So it looks like the Duluth zoo's porcupine was right -- here we are in our fourth week of rather conspicuous winter since the conflicting predictions of Groundhog's Day. So much for the least-snowy-winter record run; rather, it looks like we'll have racked up about three feet of fluff in less than a week. It's been observed to me now by a couple of people that the climate of the upper Plains is changing not so much for the warmer, as much as winter is shifting later in the year. Which sounds about right, although my experience of the region is brief enough that I find present conditions, on average, at variance only with the area's reputation. I would not with any confidence propose to derive a trend from personal observation.
At any rate, the present week of blizzards, while impressive, is little more than Poisson noise, in this case the small but real probability of getting hit by two major snow-producing systems in a short period of time. Even after this week we'll be running a snow deficit. RealClimate ran an useful discussion on El Nino, global warming, and our oddly warm winters earlier this year. Answer: a bit of both, as per norm.
On which topic, (via digby) here's an interesting post on a recent energy consuption smear directed at Gore that was manufactured recently, likely to coincide with the recent attention he attracted at the Academy Awards this week. These Republican operatives don't miss a beat when it comes to shaping the anti-Democratic narrative.
Anyway, photos of today's excitement:
Santana's is a bit hard to pigeonhole: sort of a Mideastern-American bistro, you can get your convenience store basics plus gyros, fried cheese and decent falafel from the counter. They own the after-midnight food scene in my neighborhood.