Tuesday, June 19, 2007

hotter in the city than it is in the summer

I've developed concern about the environment my new Breedlove lives in. It lives in the living room, next to the piano. It being the Central Valley, I figured it was likely to be too dry here. So I checked on this at the Breedlove guitar site, to find that the ideal relative humidity for my guitar is between 40% and 50%, or else it's between 45% and 50%, because the site has two different comments to make on this. It also notes that it was built at between 41% and 45%, so why it should ideally live in a somewhat damper environment, I don't know. We've made an inquiry.

Anyway, that led me to want to get a thermometer/hygrometer to check the environmental condition. Radio Shack sells one, but only one, that comes with a wireless extension so you get the outdoor temperature and relative humidity. It also comes with a barometer and atomic clock, so that it can, it says, predict the weather, but also keep totally accurate time (it checks in with the atomic clock in Denver, where we keep the time, every couple minutes, I think). This has the welcome side-effect that we can now monitor the outdoor temperature without relying on the national weather service. And this is good, for two unconnected reasons.

One is that the national weather service issues the temperature update 7 minutes before each hour. So you don't get up-to-the-minute temperature readings. That makes a difference especially between 9 am and noon, because it can rise several degrees over the course of a few minutes.

Second is that the national weather service's official Turlock temperature is taken at the airport (as it is for most locations). In the words of George Carlin, that's stupid, man, because nobody lives at the airport. Yesterday, the NOAA jokers predicted it would be 96 degrees in Turlock and Modesto. They recorded an official high of 100 degrees. We got a high of 102 in our yard.

It's been like that all year. The forecast calls for a temperature 5 or 6 degrees cooler than it actually gets, but the forecast remains unaltered. I figure the fact of the matter is that old temperature data skew predictions downward.

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