Put two Englishmen in a room and the first thing they'll discuss is the weather. Silly really because, it being England, the conversation always goes the same way.
"Spot of rain this morning."
"Rather. Clouds seemed a little heavy, probably more on the way."
"Good for the grass, though. Nice and green."
Only when the port comes out does it get fun.
As such, you won't be surprised to know that first thing every morning I make tea and watch the morning news, paying special attention to the weather. After all, don't want to find myself in a room with another Englishman and not have anything to say!
But bugger me if my favorite weatherman hasn't disappeared from my screen. And it's silly, in a way, but I miss him. He's not one of the slick, newsy types with flash and vim, and slick hair. He's a nice-looking, friendly, and welcoming chap. Shawn Rutherford is his name, and until recently he was on KXAN. He'd greet me every morning like I was an old friend, ease me into the report without fuss but always with a sense of humor and that amiable smile. He was like waking up to your dog wagging his tale and nuzzling you. And I mean that in a good way, Shawn.
In fact, I met him once. At the Cowboy Breakfast here in Austin. My kids had been desperate to go and we saw him doing a broadcast from there. The kids were thrilled to see someone they know from TV (like their dad isn't good enough, sheesh) so we went over to say hello. Shawn immediately dropped to one knee and had a chat with our youngest. That about sealed it.
And the bugger of it is, he's just gone. I don't know whether he'll pop up on another station or if he's now in Alabama or Alaska. There we are in our pajamas, which he's perfectly used to, having to make friends with a new weather... sorry, meteorologist.
And, just so you know, we're not the only ones who're upset.
Well, I better go, the honorable Nigel Havers-Smith has just popped into my office. And I've no bloody idea what to say to him.