Human beings often strive to create something that will endure long after they’ve shuffled off of their mortal coil (what’s a coil?). Some raise children, some produce great works of art, and I have that giant rubber band ball in my backyard. If we can’t manage anything substantial, we can at least take comfort in being a part of things that are bigger than any one person.
And so Seattleites found themselves entering the history books when it was announced that March was the wettest March on record in Seattle history. According to KOMO News, a whopping 9.44 inches of rain fell on our heads, shoulders, and asses, breaking the old Sea-Tac record of 8.40 inches in 1950, and, utterly embarrassing, the 7.23 inches of rain also recorded at the Federal Building that year.
Yeah, baby! Who’s the best March of all? Fuck those other Marches. They’ve got nothing on this March, the bunch of amateurs.
But remember, we’re just talking about March here. There are at least 11 other months to account for, including that one with Christmas in it (a good month, as months go). March is actually the second wettest month on record, falling far short of the 15.63 inches that fell in November of 2006 (we were all so young then, and wet, mostly wet). Unfortunately, January and February were not the wettest on record, which ruined our chances of getting a royal flush of 12 in a row. We would have gotten a free pizza or something.
The numbers are certainly impressive. There are approximately 630,000 people in Seattle, and 9.44 inches of rain fell in March alone. If you do the math, that means there was a single rain drop for every happy thought in Seattle, each of which was quickly snuffed out by the accompanying drop.
Apparently, Seattle weather records date back to 1891, when they first started keeping records (unless a big rainstorm destroyed the previous ones). Before 1891 was a dark time for Seattle weather history. People could exaggerate how bad the weather was all they wanted without any certified facts to contradict them. “Worst rain storm this side of the Lord,” would say old Mathias Higgenbottom, the town drunk and meteorologist. “Seen me fishes climbing rain drops up to the sky.” He had a good run.
When you consider how many Marches occurred before 1891 (40 by my count), it’s highly unlikely that this March was really the wettest. Oh, you disagree with me? Have you even seen the new Russell Crowe movie?
The weather nerds began measuring in 1891 at the Federal Building, and then switched to measuring at the airport in 1945, which was a mistake. How often are people at the airport? It’s entirely unrelatable. I want to know what the weather was like at the precise places where I was standing and moving during the month. At least measure at some place people regularly go, like the I-5 bridge, Pike Place Market, or Best Buy. “There was half an inch of rain at Best Buy today,” they could report, causing people to think, “Yes, I do go to Best Buy on occasion.”
Not to challenge the record keepers (is it the same guy who recorded the crowd roar?), but I wonder how accurate the rainfall measurements are. They probably just put out a cup with little markings on the side. Is someone always watching the cup? Does the cup ever tip over? And what if some thirsty worker accidentally drinks out of it, not realizing its importance? Do you arrest the guy and wait for him to pee so we don’t lose the history? I hope you’re not judging me for asking these questions. Somebody has to.
In any case, it was truly a wet month. No matter how many Marches come after this one (40 by my count), we should all take pride in having been here for this very special moment.
How wet was it? I thought you’d never ask! It was so wet that umbrellas needed an umbrella! It was so wet that every eternal flame at cemeteries was extinguished! It was so wet that when wet dogs would shake, other wet dogs flew out (what?)! I’m saying THAT it was wet, wet like a puddle in a bigger puddle, wet like an underwater water balloon fight, wet like clothes in a washing machine that stopped halfway through.
Don’t even get me started on April. Seriously, if I make another Seattle rain joke I’m going to vomit.