Some of our most-read stories are the ones you would expect.
Crime, fires, taxes, triumphant sports winners, a UFO in Shawnigan Lake.
But sometimes it’s the stuff we think of as more mundane that actually attracts a lot of eyeballs.
Everybody reads a weather story, for example.
It seems funny on the face of it, since it’s something we can all see for ourselves if we get up out of the chair and stick our heads outdoors for a second or two. But weather, it seems, is something we like to share.
It’s a cliché to say that Canadians love to talk about the weather, but it’s a cliché for a good reason. We do talk about the weather, all the time.
We talk about what the conditions are like right now. We speculate about what they’re going to be like tomorrow and next week. We love to tell friends and strangers alike about the worst and best weather we’ve ever seen in the past.
One of my most memorable weather stories was when I was working as a reporter in Yarmouth, N.S. We had a blizzard, and recorded over 90 centimetres of snow in one day. The most snow I’ve ever seen. People were literally snowed into their homes, doors stuck shut by snow mountains.
See? We’ve all got a weather story to tell.
Sometimes we even discuss it multiple times a day.
Lately, there’s been plenty of fodder for this favourite topic of conversation. Heat wave. Smoky skies (driving down Herd Road towards Maple Bay I couldn’t even see Saltspring one day last week it was so bad). Sitting at my desk at the Citizen I’ll ask reporters as they come in from assignments how hot it is out there now (compared to five minutes ago when I asked someone else who came in).
And today, we bet everyone is going to read the story about how the weather it about to change, bringing rain and clearing out the smoke.
I admit, I’m looking forward to clearer skies, where my lungs don’t have to work so hard. And I think I’ll miss the heat a little bit, too.
I think we love to talk about the weather so much because it’s something we all have in common. It unites us more than almost anything else. So, forecast for the Citizen: weather stories will continue for the foreseeable future.