When you say the ‘s-word’ in Mississippi

Published 11:14 am Monday, January 8, 2024

In Mississippi when the meteorologist says the “s-word”, aka snow, citizens of our great state well, lose their minds.

They invade grocery stores like we are going into the apocalypse. Battle lines are drawn along the bread, milk and toilet paper aisle.

And even though it is not even raining outside we all lose the ability to drive.

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Parents cringe in fear as teachers and school children giddily await that 5:30 a.m. news report or phone call.

When I was a child, my dad would go and dig out the snow chains to get them ready to put on the car. The next day either nothing or a dusting, no chains needed.

I do remember a few epic snows growing up and in my adulthood but they were rare.

Why are snow chances in Mississippi – particularly in central Mississippi – so rare? Well to achieve snow, the moisture and cold air must match up perfectly.

This rarely happens in our part of the state.  This perfect mix of moisture and cold air makes forecasting snow extremely challenging.

If you’ve lived here long enough, you’ve seen trusted local meteorologists forecast a snow event (or a non-snow event) with confidence only to see the total opposite happen.

It’s easier to forecast severe storms with tornadoes five or six days out than a winter weather event within 24 hours in Mississippi.

So, Mississippi meteorologists, unless you are really serious that we are going to have snow, and I mean real snow, aka accumulation, please don’t say the “s-word” during your weather report.