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The Devil Went Down to Georgia

When I walked out of my office building this afternoon I slammed into a brick wall--a brick wall of humidity. See, in Georgia (and other parts of the lovely southeast), we have this anomaly called 200% humidity. The weirdest part about this anomaly is that even with the impossibly insanely high humidity, we still get very little rain, and we are in a "severe" drought. Now, that's just what the weatherman says. I don't know how much of it I believe. But The Stook at UGA, who is the State Climatologist, says we are, and I like ol' Stooksbury, so I try to believe him. I find this excerpt from the FAQs very insightful:

7. How can we be in a drought if it's raining out, or even flooding?

A drought is a shortage in the amount of precipitation that falls in a particular place. There are two types of drought: short-term, or agricultural drought, and long-term, or hydrologic drought. Short-term droughts are usually periods of little to no rain over several weeks, and most often occur in the summer when temperatures and evaporation from ground and plants is high. They are called agricultural drought because they are especially hard on plants and farmers, and usually occur during the growing season. They can disappear relatively quickly once a rainy spell occurs. By contrast, long-term droughts occur over long periods with lower than normal rainfall, even though there may be enough rainfall to keep plants reasonably healthy. The consequences of the extended drying are reduced ground water levels and lower base flows in streams.

This can cause problems both for users who draw water from the ground and for people and ecosystems who depend on reliable water flow in the streams. Hydrologic droughts take a long time to go away because it takes months of above normal precipitation to make up the long-term deficits. However, many people may not even notice them until water supplies are restricted because of the shortages.

It takes a long time for water to trickle down from the surface into the groundwater. Because of that, it is quite possible to have flooding at the surface and still have a hydrologic drought. In thunderstorms, particularly, the rain fall so fast that most of it runs off into the streams before it can affect the groundwater, and can cause local flash flooding even while the long-term drought continues.

But, I digress. I say all this to say that I now know why "the devil went down to Georgia". It was because it felt a lot like home. That, and the fact that I'm sure there are plenty of souls ripe for the picking. And I now know why he was "in a bind cause he was way behind" (this is a very cute video with the actual song playing, but you'll have to watch it after work...sorry). It was because he was sitting in that God forsaken Atlanta traffic. I also know how Johnny beat him. It is because the devil sucks, and Johnny is a good ol' country boy. There ain't nothin' better.

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