Wednesday, June 1, 2011


Here's something we don't see every day.

I'm nearing the end of Ronald Wright's A Short History of Progress. In the book, Wright points out that the only reason we, humans, have been able to establish our very complex and far-reaching civlizations is that for the past 10,000 years the Earth's weather has been, relatively, stable.

Is that changing?

I can't say, but I can say that hail is not something we see every day here in coastal Maine. It's one of those things that happen that's rare enough to make us stop ... and take pictures.


  1. The last 200 years have been particularly even.

    The Younger Dryas were really bad, and lasted a little over 1000 years: helping to kick start agriculture and probably wiping out a huge percentage of the hunter gatherers that we were at the time.

    But with tree rings we can see where there have been a number of lesser ocilations- they generally have not been good for large complex societies trying to live through them.

  2. Hmmm. I didn't realize hail was rare in Maine. It's not exactly a daily event in PA, but we get hail about once a year, and it's usually at least an inch in diameter. I think the weather is really odd this year. We had no spring to speak of. The last week of May brought weather that looked like the hottest couple weeks of summer. And those tornadoes in Mass! It seems to me that our climatic karma is coming home to roost.

  3. The cover of Newsweek seems to agree with you - it reads "WEATHER PANIC - This is the new normal (and we're hopelessly unprepared). I haven't read the article yet but if there is anything interesting in there, I'll be sure to pass it on.

  4. Just read the article - if I typed out everything that was interesting in there, I'd end up typing out the whole thing. Lots of stuff in there that I wasn't aware of regarding climate change. I recommend reading left me shaken, and helped me make the decision that if I am going to buy property to live out the long haul of climate change, the property is going to be in the north.

  5. And I'm a ditz. It didn't occur to me until just now to see if I could find the article online. Sure enough, found it in a couple minutes: