Doc Seidman Says……
………Enjoy this post from my friend Austin Pert. Austin is a student at the University of Miami.
CORAL GABLES, FLA– The palm tree in Coral Gables– on the corner of Ponce de Leon Blvd and Bird Road– has seen its shadow today.
Meteorological, astronomical and agricultural experts in South Florida all can agree– this can only mean one thing– twelve more months of summer.
“When it is sunny, and it is indeed sunny today as it is slightly under 11 out of 10 times in this subtropical microclimate, the palm tree sees its shadow and summer is extended by another 52 weeks,” says Joe Aronson, a leading researcher at the National Weather Service.
Farmers in the nearby Everglades were ecstatic to hear the news: “Each year, I nervously wait for this day,” says citrus farmer Joey Borai, “if the result is not the one like we got today, it would often plunge below 65 degrees during the ensuing year. I would have to work hard to save my citrus crop and I would also have to invest in a ski jacket.”
Ryan White, a resident of Coconut Grove for over 15 years, has seen a handful of occasions where the palm tree did not see its shadow, and panic ensued in anticipation of a dip in temperature, “It was crazy, Starbucks hot latte sales went through the roof, and people stayed inside all day, so Netflix subscriptions increased by nine-fold.”
Like the naysayers surrounding Pennsylvania’s Punxsutawney Phil, many people doubt the legitimacy of the phenomenon, but unlike the hype surrounding the northeastern groundhog, the Coral Gables palm tree, it has 100% accuracy when predicting extended summer.
“Each time the palm sees its shadow, the twelve-month daily temperature mean is above 24 degrees centigrade, or 75 Fahrenheit,” says Aronson.
In pre-colonial North America, indigenous people would pray for sun on this day because it signaled another year of warmth and prosperity.
Spanish settlers soon caught wind of the custom and soon named the occasion Dia de el Arbol or Tree Day.
Today, millions of people descend their attention on Coral Gables in hopes of avoiding a “chilly” spell.
It is a unique phenomenon, but it may explain South Florida’s year-round, warm weather.
Austin is a regular contributor to The Odyssey Online