Sunday, May 17, 2009


From WGNO TV in New Orleans:

Weather Wreaks Havoc Around New Orleans Area

METAIRIE - As heavy rain moved through the area Saturday night, Jerussa and Les Levy recorded what appeared to be a tornado or waterspout. The couple used a Flipcam and sent the video to ABC26 News.

The funnel was associated with a heavy storm that moved southwest through the Metairie area. Earlier in the evening, people reported seeing a waterspout on Lake Pontchartrain.

There were also reports of minor street flooding and some building damage, especially around Lakeside Shopping Center. Streets with water included 17th and 18th Streets, West Esplanade Avenue, and parts of Causeway Boulevard.

The storm may also have caused a power outage for around 500 homes.

Actually, that's the whole story, so no "more here" link. But if you want to see that I'm not making it up, because I'm a well known liar, click here to see the story in it's original format.

Sadly, the video referenced in the story is not online yet.

From WVUE TV in New Orleans:

Water spout touches down in Lake Pontchartrain

Metairie - A water spout touched down in Lake Pontchartrain near Metairie around 9:00 Saturday night. Severe weather caused minor damage and minor street flooding. No injuries were reported. FOX 8 viewers captured these images.

Same as above. Really small, tiny stories. But there are some pics associated with this one here.

The only reason I find this blogworthy is that I got to see it happen. Okay, that, and how interesting it is to note the discrepancy between what I saw and what was reported.

Here's what happened.

Around nine o'clock or so I was watching television and heard a massive "boom" sound from outside. It had been raining, and heavy thunderstorms were forecast, so I figured it was a transformer going down. Then my power went off. I looked out the sliding glass door of my balcony and saw a mass of sparks flying through the air a couple of blocks away. Another transformer going down.

Then I saw a bunch of debris circling around, headed in my direction. "Whoa, man, this is fucked," I thought. Cars on the street had pulled into parking lots and beside curbs--people were scared. I still wasn't quite grasping what was going on, but started trying to remember what you're supposed to do when a tornado is headed in your direction. A third transformer blew, and by now the first transformer to go down had set fire to the pole it was perched on, which burned despite the rain.

Then the circling debris headed off to the right of my apartment building. "Okay, cool, I'm safe for the moment," I thought. In the darkness, I found my phone and called my ex to compare notes. Apparently, even though she's only a twenty minute drive from where I live, nothing was happening there in the way of severe weather, but she did tell me about some hardcore radar images she had just seen on television right over me in Metairie. As the rain here intensified, I told her I wasn't surprised.

What did surprise me was how the power was restored about forty five minutes later. From what I had seen, I was expecting to be in the dark all night. So I turned on the TV news to see what the local suit and makeup gang had to say about it all. Apparently, there was some confusion as to whether the so-called "waterspout" had touched down on land, which would make it a tornado. It took another half hour before one of the local FOX guys, who was on his day off, called in on his cell phone to confirm the tornado--to the best of my knowledge, they scooped the hell out of their competitors; at the moment, nobody else is reporting this as an actual tornado.

According to this FOX guy, it tore up the roof of a snow cone place just two blocks from me. Fuckin' A. I was less than a football field away from a fucking tornado. And I just stood there and watched like an idiot. Apparently, I'm useless during an emergency.

Anyway, that's my nice quiet Saturday night at home. Just me and a tornado. And my blog. Talk about being long-winded.

Photo courtesy of WWL TV Eyewitness News viewer "j.j.avitia."