The wind and our nothingness

It’s been all about the WIND lately in L.A. The local news oozes with stories, features and excessive infatuation, with all things wind-related and its ensuing damage, both serious and amusing, in every photographic and anecdotal incarnation imaginable. Turn on the local news and you will see…wind tops the charts! L.A. is a relatively sedate meteorological non-phenomena. Our weather, balmy and mild, is also torturously bland and nondescript. It never snows in the L.A. basin. We don’t experience tornadoes or hurricanes, and high temperatures rarely exceed the century mark, and strong winds are as foreign a concept to us as North Sea gales.

Now our news is aflutter with scintillating and dramatic observations about our blustery overnight debacle, with more to come possibly this evening, into tomorrow. It’s WIND, all day, all night.


from KTLA.com

These are some of the most powerful off-shore winds we’ve seen in years. Shit was turned upside down last night. Trees uprooted, other ostensibly stationary items were tossed about casually. Off-shore winds are dry and they scrape the skin off your lips and arms. Many of us went to sleep last night to a placid urban wasteland and woke up to glowering havoc and disarray. People I know were awakened by the shrieking wind in the middle of the night. Still it strikes me as a significant non-event. It deserves some coverage, but this is ridiculous. It’s only wind. Some of our precious landscape was savaged by the intense winds, but everything is “uprightable” and I don’t think anyone was even killed. It’s just a dramatic perturbation in our insignificant weather patterns.

The hullabaloo is what is most noteworthy. The pure amount of unabashed overstated bullshit and lost work hours and idle, agonizing small-talk related to the wind is what I believe the KTLA’s of the world need to really address. The lost man-hours. The distraction we feed upon.

This morning, a couple of people I work with came in late, one citing the “crazy winds last night.” Huh? This person lives in the concrete junglehood of Mid City. What the hell there can possibly be affected by high winds? It’s all concrete slabs and chain link fences. Later, she let slip out that the winds had merely kept her up all night. Ahh.

The buzz at work this morning, and most of the afternoon, was about The Wind. Wind this, wind that…no one was seriously affected by the wind but it didn’t prevent them from pointing out the havoc that lined their parade routes to work. So much time was spent talking about the wind that I began to wonder if talking about the wind would prove to be more profitable than actually doing some work. Still, The Wind obviously represented a departure from the normal trodden path. We love deviations from the norm when they are essentially harmless, as The Wind was. This is what epitomizes small talk. Inconsequential crap we can all share in our communal tub of idiocy. Why do we prefer to fill our days with groundless frivolity? Why do we engage such petty diversions? Is it because we cannot concentrate, and thus lazily succumb to boredom so effectively? It’s the memes, they are everywhere. This type of verbal synchronization serves a purpose, an emotional, visceral need, but I’m not sure what it is because I’m not very human.