Climatologists say that the most dire consequences of a warming climate will not be the actual temperature rise, but the disruption of long established patterns, and extreme swings in weather. The problem will not be the warm, but the weird–more storms, freakier storms, deeper droughts, bigger floods.
It seems to me that something similar is occurring in the news. As the 24/7 news cycle heats up, and new media fans the flames, the news has gotten pretty–well–weird. Even if we exclude the face-eating zombie attacks, god particles, any headline containing “UFO,” and all the political news, the mean global weird level appears to be on the rise.
I base this on science; an exhaustive fifteen minutes of research on Google yields the following evidence:
- Man pulls out crossbow in road rage incident
- Ted Nugent’s drummer flees police in golf cart
- Bjork serenades Denmark in giant worm dress
- Squads of mimes deployed in an effort to reduce nighttime noise pollution in Paris.
- Legoland employees replace manager’s Volvo with model made from 200,000 Legos
- The Pope’s astronomer says he would baptize aliens
- Two giant tortoises who spent 115 years as a couple “can’t stand the sight of each other any more”
- Family finds moldy image of Jesus in their bathroom
- Dozens of poisonous snakes, destined to be made into wine, escape on bus
Leaving aside for a moment the question of why anyone would want to make wine from poisonous snakes, I have to wonder whether weirdness, like carbon, accumulates in the atmosphere, and whether over time, we will reach a tipping point of runaway weird. Or did we already pass that point sometime back in the ’60s?