Hurricanes with feminine names turn out to be deadlier in the United States than their more macho-sounding counterparts, probably because their monikers make people underestimate their danger, the researchers conclude. In fact, the two deadliest storms to make landfall in the U.S. since 1979, when male names were introduced, were named Katrina and Sandy. - Seth Borenstein, AP
So what have we learned from this study? We've learned that people are stupid, obviously. Hurricane Ivan and everyone gets out of Dodge: Hurricane Katrina and everyone stays put. People are dumb, DEE-YOU-EM, dumb. But we knew that. So what else.
The main thing is, we're going to have to be much more selective about picking names. Next season, for example, we were thinking of naming one hurricane, Hurricane Fluffy. Fluffy is a great name for a hurricane, and we'd chosen it by unanimous vote. Now, however, it seems Hurricane Fluffy is not to be. No one would take a name like that seriously enough. On the other hand, the hurricane after Fluffy we were going to name, Hurricane Gnarly Bad-Ass. Now Gnarly Bad-Ass is a name that will make people sit up and take notice. No one's going to take any chances with Hurricane Gnarly Bad-Ass.
Looking over the proposed list of next years' hurricanes, some names are fine as they are, and some will have to be changed. Hurricane Endor, Dark Lord of Blood, is a fine name for a hurricane, although it's a little on the lengthy side, but at least everyone will take Hurricane Endor, Dark Lord of Blood seriously. If anything, they might take it too seriously. You'd hate to name a hurricane something like Hurricane Endor, Dark Lord of Blood and then have it turn out to be a dud. People would stop taking our department seriously. But the name Hurricane Mr. Winkles, which was to come between Hurricane Nimrod the Destroyer and Hurricane Lollapalooza-Doozy, is a terrible name. Honestly. Hurricane Mr. Winkles. I don't know what we were thinking on that one.
The jury's still out on Hurricane Lollapalooza-Doozy.