Monday, August 3, 2020

The secret storm namers
     The secretive people whose job it is to assign such commonplace names to hurricanes as Fran, Bertha, Charlie, Irene, Floyd, Florence, and Dorian, all of which (and more) I’ve experienced to greater or lesser degrees of expense and chagrin, living in the Hurricane Hook of eastern North Carolina as I do, must have gotten bored this season. They apparently decided to assign some names that will be a challenge to pronounce, Isaias being one they likely giggled over. “Let’s see those pompous, spotlight-hogging TV weather guessers try to pronounce this one.”

     I have some suggestions of other potential names that should send the namers into happy tearful paroxysms.

     How about Andrze (Polish). Or Zariyah or Aksiniya or Fimochka or Kotyusha, all of which are Russian? Or Eiichi (Japanese)? Or Xiaoice (Chinese)?

     The Irish have some especially good ones that the namers could use. Saoirse, for example, or Seanán, Líadain, or Aoibheann.

     The ultimate in names that could tie square knots in a newscaster’s tongue, though, are African. Examples: Achieng (not a Tanzanian sneeze), Tafadzwa, Sithembile, Nosizwe, Onyekachukwu, or better yet Oluwafunmilayo.

     If they do a perplexing enough job, some of the storm namers might even graduate to the ranks of those charged with assigning creative names to thousands of new drugs.

     Then there are those anonymous six-year-olds who are given different colored chalks and cut loose on a big floor map to scrawl those various predicted hurricane spaghetti tracks . . .

Please mask up in public and keep a six-foot distance from other people in public. Together we can beat this virus that’s sickening and killing way too many of our fellow Americans.

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