Storm Watch, 2010!

Or not. Networks will do anything for a rating. Fear and paranoia in the hearts of viewers is a surefire recipe for good ratings and big advertisers.

That being said, winter has been kicking our asses seven ways 'til Sunday. Eleven feet on snow in the high Sierras, ice storms in the Midwest and blizzards on the East Coast. Here in Southern California, the rain has been nonstop. The natives are whining and the transplants are enthralled. Rain is romantic.

I was taken by a phenomenon in my backyard. The dry desert heat parches the land until everything is brittle, crackling. Our fence, which had been saturated with buckets of rain water for weeks, was suddenly exposed to a warm ray of sun. The wood boiled and fizzed, spewing billowing clouds of steam. It looked as if the cabin were on fire. I had to share.

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