Both of which were predicted yesterday for today and the coming days.
But what could be the difference, I ask you, between isolated and scattered?
Scattered thunderstorms might be as numerous and harmless as sheep, let’s say, gone here and there astray across a high, green, bucolically grand English moor.
While an isolated thunderstorm will be your outrider, your renegade, your gunslinger who rides solitary into town, shoots up every innocent soul in sight, and rides out again in a moment, leaving witnesses and the wounded, but no one untouched.
This is histrionic meteorology, of course, but fun too.
So tell me, when it comes to scattered flocks of unharming sheep or that single, malevolent gunslinger, where do your storm-sympathies lie?
Perhaps it’s not a question that needs asking.
Because there’re few things more reasonable, rational, pragmatic, or complacent than wooly herbivores grazing a sloping hillside.
But that gunslinging and stormful isolate (to fall in, for the joy of it, with the psychologists, who may be nothing without their vernacular) is all solitude, with his wild poetry, and direness and extremity and, finally, emotion.
Shoot first, in other words, and ask no questions later.
Have you decided which you’ll have?
Is it the gunslinger, that wrecking and vengeful thunderstorm, and not the sheep, the scattered unimportance of the flock?
As I would.
So here we are then, two irrational and isolated storms, two malevolent loners and lovers and dark heroes with a taste for gunpowder dramatics, facing each other from either end of Main Street in this one-horse town, this dusty and breezy high-plains place for the heart’s excess, with our boots, our vests, our broad-brimmed hats, our holstered six-guns slung low, and our hands out while the timid townsfolk peep from behind filthy curtains and shutters.
In other words, this is the showdown.