Tuesday, November 07, 2006

It's an ill wind that blows nobody good

Or something like that.

For those of you not in Southern California, we're currently being fried by Santa Ana winds.

A Santa Ana wind feels like... well, you know when the oven's on "high" and you crack the door open and get that blast of hot air right in the face? That's what a Santa Ana feels like. The humidity plummets (I think it's at 16% right now), the temperature skyrockets (it's over 90 degrees), people get cranky and drive worse than usual - I've been riding my bike to work and I've been honked at, flipped off and had more near-misses than normal.

Right now, I'm very grateful to be working in the evenings - it cools off about 6 pm when we get back from dinner, and the rest of the night is really nice.

Although the Santa Ana winds are traditionally believed to be evil, they do have one big advantage:

As long as they're blowing, there's no way it's going to rain.


Meg said...

I think it was Raymond Chandler who wrote referring to the Santa Ana winds: "meek little wives finger the edge of the butcher knife and eye their husband's neck" which describes their effect on us poor mortals.

EcamirG said...

16%? i'm surprised it's that high. i feel like i need to buy stock in moisturizer. this is hellish.

i think i heard they're supposed to break tomorrow, though.

El Kabong said...

There is something uneasy in the Los Angeles air this afternoon, some unnatural stillness, some tension. What it means is that tonight a Santa Ana will begin to blow, a hot wind from the northeast whining down through the Cajon and San Gorgonio Passes, blowing up sand storms out along Route 66, drying the hills and the nerves to flash point. For a few days now we will see smoke back in the canyons, and hear sirens in the night. I have neither heard nor read that a Santa Ana is due, but I know it, and almost everyone I have seen today knows it too. We know it because we feel it. The baby frets. The maid sulks. I rekindle a waning argument with the telephone company, then cut my losses and lie down, given over to whatever it is in the air. To live with the Santa Ana is to accept, consciously or unconsciously, a deeply mechanistic view of human behavior. Joan Didion

Mark MacLeod said...

That's like a vacation from the summer heat here in AZ.

Anonymous said...

Don't the Santa Ana winds sometimes cause huge brushfires?

Iron Rails & Iron Weights

Dan said...

Violent crime goes up during the Santa Ana's. Turns out they are big positive ion generators, which makes people more aggressive. Unlike negative ions--found at the beach and during rain storms--that make people more relaxed and at ease.