A proud moment in Okie twister history
... occurred yesterday afternoon when a CLOCKWISE tornado destroyed an aircraft hangar near El Reno, Okla.
You see, tornados almost always rotate counter-clockwise in the northern hemisphere. This wrong-way whirlwind wrapped itself around its work against coriolis forces, mesocell dynamics and tradition.
Many people wonder how Okies can remain mentally stable living in such an environment that produces tornados, if things are normal, several times a month from March through August. First, who says we're mentally stable? Second, we pay attention to the weather. A lot of us can read Mr. Doppler about as well as the guy on the TV set. Some of us can feel the approach of tornadic storms in our bones (or sinuses). A great number of us anxiously await the first wailing of the sirens so we can hurry outside and get a good look at the funnel. It's part of our shared cultural heritage.
Naturally there will be those who will "tut-tut" about safety rules, but the fact of the matter is that most Oklahomans also know when to quit the rubber-neckin' and get to shelter. And each person has their own tolerance for just how much distance they need between the vortex and the hidey hole.
Personally the Oklahomilist has witnessed a couple of funnels already this spring, one a jim-dandy connected to a lowering wall cloud that for a few minutes actually appeared to represent a real threat. The other was much less magnificent. But that's the way it goes. A few years back, while running the news operations at a medium-sized Oklahoma daily newspaper, we tried for five years to get a decent photograph of a local tornado for our front page. Sadly most of our storms came at night during that time, and we never did score.
El Reno is a considerable distance from the OBOO (Oklahomilist's Base of Operations) but we are grateful to those who managed to capture the images of the Anti-Cyclonic Twister, one of which graces this post.
True Okies, one and all.