Via tweetphoto.com user WSMVJoshDevine and weather.com
“No single event can be attributed to climate change but the dice are loaded so that certain types of events become more common”, you know the drill…
Anyway, great swaths of Tennessee got over a foot of rain this past weekend, and the Cumberland looks to crest about fifteen feet above flood stage. There is major damage through Nashville and much of middle Tennessee.
There’s a silver lining, though an off-topic one.
Having had the unforgettable experience of spending a couple of nights at Nashville’s Opryland resort while Irene attended a conference there, I am not sorry to report that the abomination in question is significantly damaged. My sympathies to the innocent victims who were staying there, as I did, out of ignorance or curiosity or some business reason, (who were rounded into the conference rooms, then shipped off to cots in high school auditoriums without their possessions; I hope any foreigners, especially those planning to extend their visit to Arizona, eventually get their passports back…) but I have little sympathy for Opryland itself.
The name “Opry” was originally a mockery of the town’s opera-aspiring blue-bloods, who did not want their city becoming a center for a raucous and informal folk music. Now it’s become a mockery of the original mockery.
The owners, “Gaylord”, are putting a brave face on it and promising to reopen in several months, but perhaps the fates will extract some rough justice from this event, and the monstrosity will be irretrievably damaged. Then country music may go back to being a genuine folk culture rather than an overwrought pastiche of itself.
Update: Joe Romm has more, including a remarkable video and the amazing fact, via Jeff Masters, that as of May 2, this is the wettest May on record in Nashville.
5/5 Interesting Update at Sully’s. “Stinko de Mayo”.
Update August 9 2010: Hot link to Opryland picture no longer works, removed.