Wednesday, June 27, 2012

The popcorn belt.

Hello from the Great Indiana Desert!

We are on our 24th day without any measurable rainfall in Indianapolis, and the total rainfall for the month of June thus far is a whopping 0.05". To put this in perspective, the previous record for the driest June in the Circle City was the horrible Drought of '88, which saw only .36" for the month and a 21-day rainless streak.

So it looks like we're on pace to shatter that record. Combine that with daily highs that are scheduled to flirt with triple digits the next couple days, and the corn would be popping off the cobs out in the fields, if it had enough moisture to pop, which it doesn't. On a perhaps related note, corn futures jumped thirty cents on the CBOT yesterday.

BONUS!: The patriotic State of Indiana has a state fireworks preemption law. Hoosiers may not be prevented by local ordnance from explosively celebrating the independence of our great nation between the 29th of June and the 9th of July. Even in a tinderbox.

As a good Wookie-suiter, this is where I have to trust the good sense of my neighbors. (And stand-to with a fire extinguisher on the night of the Fourth, because if good sense were dynamite, most folks wouldn't have enough to blow their nose, it seems.)

29 comments:

Fuzzy Curmudgeon said...

Hmm. Not even by emergency order?

Well, I suppose Hizzoner could just go on TV and radio and ask the fine people of our fine city to lay off the incendiaries till we get some rain.

And pigs will fly, too.

Tam said...

Nathan,

Oh, I am not in favor of any actual legal prohibition on fireworks. Where I grew up, they were against state law, and we just drove to Alabama or Tennessee to get them and the sky still turned red, white, and blue every Independence Day.

I'm just hoping against hope that my fellow denizens of Hoosieropolis will exercise an unusual amount of restraint this year...

Larry said...

Hopefully you have a better class of neighbors than I do. I'm not worried about the ones right next door, but the ones down the road...

They have settled down a bit since I made it clear that I will return fire.

Anonymous said...

It's tinder dry here in KY but fireworks are going off every night, so far without any field fires.

Farmer Frank called it as a dry year. Hay price is up 20% and in short supply.

Gerry

Fuzzy Curmudgeon said...

Tam, I suppose I was really lamenting the fact that common sense isn't common.

Which is more or less what you said, I think. :)

FWIW they were illegal here when I grew up, too, but that didn't stop us from getting them from Kentucky.

perlhaqr said...

As an old tinderbox hand, I advise Bobbi to water the roof at dusk. And yeah, keep the hose at the ready.

NM definitely has strong things to say about fireworks... which means basically nothing at all with all the Indian Reservations we have in the state.

Tam said...

Nathan,

Growing up, a neighbor kid went to boarding school in NC and used to spend all his allowance on fireworks to bring home, and on the evening of the Fourth, I'd help him carry a 50-gallon aquarium piled full of bottle rockets, Roman candles, and firecrackers out into his driveway, and we'd flout the law from sunset until that thing was empty.

Frank W. James said...

I had a bad feeling about the weather for this year when I decided to 'retire' from farming.

Turns out I was an oracle...

All The Best,
Frank W. James

Tam said...

Frank,

I was just commenting to my neighbor yesterday on your impeccable timing as we were both engaged in desperately trying to keep the gardens alive.

It's dry enough that I've actually had to water mint and chives...

Ken said...

I was on the road with my band during the drought of '88...Columbus, Cincinnati, Louisville, Toronto, Milwaukee, Chicago, St. Louis, Kansas City. Van gave up the ghost as we were fixing to head to Houston and Little Rock. Lost 25 pounds in 24 days, but it was fun.

Gerry N. said...

When the houses in my development were built 30 plus years ago they all had cedar shake roofs. My idiot neighbor set his roof and the neighbor's on the other side of him on fire two years running with fireworks. He didn't seem able to connect "Roman Candles" with "fire". His fire insurance more than doubled. I put a top end asbestos shingle roof on my house, and my fire insurance dropped 50%. Now all but one of the 82 houses here have fire retardant of fire proof roof coverings. I still stay home on the 4th of July to stand watch with hoses deployed front and back of my house. Ya just never know when that bastige Murphy will show up.

Jay G said...

Tam,

Fireworks are illegal in the state of Massachusetts. Yes, I know, it's shocking.

They have been illegal for my entire life.

Yet every year, from the end of May until the end of July, it sounds like Beirut in my sleepy little burb.

There's a street a couple over from us where several families have a competition to see who can have the best amateur fireworks display. Sometimes the cops stop by to watch, that's how good it gets.

Why the bloody hell do we even *have* laws that no one wants to enforce?

Lergnom said...

When it was unrelentingly hot and drought-y in the U.S. of A., I and a few other lunatics decided to go bicycling in Nova Scotia, where it rained every day for two weeks and the temps never broke 60. My cycling gloves rotted to nothing and I wore my one and only sweatshirt("you don't need to pack warm clothes, it's SUMMER!") every day until we got to the ferry at Yarmouth.

Anonymous said...

We survivors of the great Texas heatwavedrought of '11 give your our sincerest sympathies. But I'm glad it's finally somebody else's turn: Texas is finally off brown alert http://droughtmonitor.unl.edu Hope it stays that way.

jf

Erin Palette said...

Believe me, Tam, if I could box up a chunk of Debby's rainfall and send it your way, I would.

I'm happy for rain, don't get me wrong -- living through the wildfires of '98 where every county except the Keys was burning will do that to a person -- but after a full of rain, I'm ready for it to go away for a bit.

LCB said...

Rode the long way home yesterday after work, enjoying the sunny 80 degree weather in dah Greater Miami Valley. Corn everywhere here is in distress...leaves all curled and pointy from lack of mositure. I even saw several fields where the field corn had already gone to tassel and the stalks were turning brown/yellow. I hate to see this, cause it means a horrible year for our farmers...

perlhaqr said...

http://www.gazette.com/articles/proportions-140896-waldo-canyon.html

DirtCrashr said...

We don't get any rain from May till November...

Mr.O said...

Tam...

Where's that lunatic Algore when you need him?

The all-time high since official record keeping started here in Knoxville is 104°F. Predictions are for higher temps this weekend.

No rain here at the house in more than two weeks. Drier than Melba toast in the back pasture. Even though the grass crackles when you walk on it, there's an incredible blackberry crop. No garden this year [whew!] and it doesn't cost much to keep the bird bath topped up.

I may have to hand wash the vehicles as a last resort.

...Mr.O

...Mr.O

Bubblehead Les. said...

Let's just hope the Grid stays up.

STxRynn said...

Had a fatality down here recently due to corn crop. Seems an old timer was plowing his corn field, when it started popping. He thought it was snow and froze to death in the field.

It was a sad day to be sure.

Yesterday was 111 at my house.

Take care.....

Once Free Man said...

"if good sense were dynamite, most folks wouldn't have enough to blow their nose, it seems"

Tam, don't you know your not supposed to use those keys to the internet yourself? Those are for sharing, not for hoarding.


Fireworks were illegal in Indiana for most of my young life. You always made sure to give some cash to whomever was passing through TN on the way to/from Fla. Opening the trunk to see the booty was like Christmas in July.
When I was a teen, my brother was stationed in SC and we visited 2-3 times per year, so I always had extra cash for stopping in "THE WORLDS'S LARGEST FIREWORKS STORE" that seemed to be on every other exit near the TN border. Wasn't long after that IN passed the confuddling "you can buy them but you can't light them" law that was universally ignored from day one. ("I bough these in Tennessee, officer. The ones I signed for at the fireworks store were set off during our vacation in Canada. Honest.")

Eric said...

We have some HUGE fireworks going off here in CO...or the pines are popping from the fire.

MikeyB said...

Tam,

Been so wet and cool here in the Pacific Northwest, the moss is still growing between the toes. Come the 4th, it'll sound like Beirut, circa 1982/3. Only place fireworks are illegal is in liberal Seattle. They're illegal further north, but no one pays attention to that law.

MikeyB

Tam said...

MikeyB,

"Only place fireworks are illegal is in liberal Seattle. They're illegal further north, but no one pays attention to that law."

You mean you don't have state-level fireworks preemption laws?!? ;)

mikelaforge said...

Ditto, Gerry N. "I still stay home on the 4th of July to stand watch with hoses deployed front and back of my house".

roland said...

I drive to Daytona every other weekend to take Grandma to church. Lately it's been like driving a frigging submarine.
Would that some of the clouds that parked over north Florida could have made their way to you.

One ping only, Vasily.

Jon said...

Here in Arizona we call that "summer". *g*

Of course, we also have roughly 52,000 acres worth of wildfires burning right now too.

Goober said...

Mikey - you are a coastophobe, or a inlander-acist, aren't you? :)

There isn't a single county west of the Cascades that allows fireworks. The areas you're speaking of are all on the west side of the mountains, where it is so wet year round you can't start a fire with 100 gallons of diesel fuel and a crate of road flares. Over here on the dry side (I live in Spokane) we can usually get our farts to spontaneously combust by July 4th because it gets so dry over here.