Surf's up -
My grandfather was a keen observer of the weather, and during my visits with him, Skipper (as we all called him) had a chestnut or two to share. As I recall, he was the first person to explain to me why a pretty red sunset was great news -especially for a trouting enthusiast like himself.
Sailor's delight at night, sailor's warning in the morning - those are the things we learn about red skies as kids. But there's a lot more than that, you know.
A weather synopsis that's worth saving is just the start of this week's web tour. We'll also keep you posted with a local eye on the World Cup, pour up some laughs from one of the best comedy troupes in the world, and dish some politics from the right side of the political pew.
How to forecast weather without gadgets
I downloaded this oversized graphic after thoroughly enjoying the clever way it presented a trove of common-sense information ab-out weather and how we can observe the world around us. Did you ever think it was folk wisdom, for instance, that you could smell a rainstorm in advance? Well, actually, you sort of can; plants release waste when a low-pressure system moves in, meaning that that earthy smell is a sign to take in the laundry.
One of the young reporters working with me at the CBC newsroom these days is Andrew Brown (you may remember his dad, Jim Brown, from his years hosting "The Morning Show"). Andrew is also writing a blog on the World Cup for our sports colleagues. Andrew has been having, from the looks of it, quite the slice keeping track of each day's action, as seen through the lens of St. John's fans. The link above is for Andrew's Twitter feed, which features blog links and more.
Speaking of soccer, no doubt the vuvuzela, the contentious instrument that makes a buzzing racket, will be a key memory (good or bad) from this World Cup. Why limit your exposure to just the games? This Dutch company has made a wildly popular - more than 1 million downloads, if you're curious - app for the iPhone that lets you blare away, whenever you want. Surely this could bring a whole new element to staff meetings, no?
Gulf oil spill map
I wanted to draw your attention to this interactive map prepared by the U.S. Environmental Response Management Association, which shows the area in the Gulf of Mexico involving the massive Deepwater Horizon spill. Using overlays of data, you can select from many facets, from the infrastructure of the oil industry to the flora and fauna of the area, to industries like the fishery. It's a great way to get insight into one of the biggest, most complex stories of our time.
UCB comes from Upright Citizens Brig-ade, a comedy troupe that launched Amy Poehler and other funny folks to stardom. The current batch is funny enough; I and many others (a couple of million, actually) have had a jolly good laugh at their take on the BP disaster, which depicted executives at a loss as to how to respond to a coffee spill. There's more where that came from.
For several years, I've enjoyed a short, bright podcast called Martini Shot, written and read by Rob Long, a writer who made his bones on the sitcom "Cheers." It's largely about the entertainment industry. While he writes it for the U.S. public radio station KCRW, don't assume Long fits the Volvo-Democrat-organic stereotype; he's also well-known for his conservative punditry. Ricochet is a project he's backing, aimed at centre-right voters. (That is, voters who are way to the right of Barack Obama, but not at all comfortable with the Palin brigade.)
John Gushue is a news editor with cbc.ca/nl in St. John's. Twitter: @johngushue