Why It Never Rains At Your House

July 31, 2016 | By | Comments (5)

Photo: Timothy Clary/AFP/Getty Images)

These are the times that try gardeners’s souls. Fearsome August will take possession of our weather for a dreadful 31 days. Hydrangeas will melt. Tomato plants shall shrivel. Lawns will combust. Not everywhere, though. Just where you are. To understand why, you must do as Grumpy did. You must talk to the clouds.

The clouds say, “You humans think we owe you. We don’t owe you one damn thing. When you sip your gin and tonic, do you thank clouds for the water that made the ice cubes? No. When you pump so much of our water into the ground that poor Oklahoma starts rocking like Stevie Ray Vaughan, do you consult the clouds? No. When we forget to drop our water over your farmlands, you seed us with silver iodide to force us to. That doesn’t work. That just ticks us off.”

The clouds say, “You think you know all about us, but you don’t. You describe us as “angry,” “lustful,” “ominous,” “gloomy,” and even “poofy.” Poofy? Oh, please. In fact, the overarching character of a cloud is a keen sense of humor and eternal perversity.”

The clouds say, “With your weather radar and supercomputers, you still haven’t a clue what we will do. How many people desperate for rain see a big red blob heading in their directions on the Weather Channel and wail, “It’s coming right for us! There’s no way it can miss!” And then before their anguished, incredulous eyes, we split and pass to either side, spilling nary a drop on their parched gardens. We do this day after day.”


Another unsatisfied customer. Photo: polkadotbarn.blogspot.com

The clouds say, “Our favorite maneuver is the ‘doughnut hole.’ This is when, laden with rain, one of us splits, passes you on each side, and then reforms on the top and bottom, encircling you with showers you can see, but never feel. That just cracks us up. Oh, and let’s not forget ‘the curtain.’ This is when we drop a shaft of rain at the end of your street that never moves an inch towards your garden before it stops. You drop to your knees in supplication, but no rain for you today.”

The clouds say, “But do not mistake our humor for cruelty. We will rain on you. We will rain on you a lot. When you’re lying on a beach. When you’re moving into a new house. When you’ve just lit a campfire. When you’re painting your garage. When you’re at an outdoor wedding. When hay lies in the fields. When you’re on a long hike without rain gear. When you’re free-climbing El Capitan and halfway up.”

The clouds conclude, “But mostly, we’ll rain in winter when plants are dormant and don’t need the water. It has always been this way. It always will. Get used to it.”

Thus spake the clouds.


  1. Mya

    But there are no clouds.

    September 8, 2016 at 11:36 pm
  2. Carolyn Choi

    A strange Spring/Summer this year with rain after rain for a week , then no rain and extreme heat for another. We just had one of the biggest rainfalls I’ve ever seen , falling at 2 inches an hour.

    August 3, 2016 at 4:06 pm
  3. Kathleen

    You can have some of our rain. It’s been raining like clockwork every evening around 4 pm here….Good luck mowing grass after work. If you turn your back, it’s a jungle.

    August 1, 2016 at 9:25 am
  4. Brynn

    I’m truly terrified for August this year. We had a miserly eight days of rain for July (I don’t remember what June was, but it was about the same), and most of those were tiny piddly showers that barely wet the deck. Green grass is a fond distant memory, and the trees started turning yellow and dropping leaves weeks ago. Hours puttering about in the flower beds has turned into a quick water drop and dash, lest I be fried into bacon. The birds and butterflies cashed in their frequent flier miles and are off in greener pastures, save for one lone mockingbird who ain’t playing with a full deck anyway… You get the (brownish, lifeless) picture.

    At least we’ve had no mosquitoes.

    August 1, 2016 at 5:47 am
  5. Carol King

    August is give up month in the deep south. On August 1st every year,I give up. I pull up all my annuals, put what’s left of my potted plants in deep shade and go about my business until the mums show up at Lowes….

    July 31, 2016 at 8:30 pm

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