My great grandfather, Enos Barnard, kept a diary. Many people in that age did; some have become a great resource of sociological, marketing, and real-time observations.
“The meeting was stirred by A.D.’s announcement more than by the Indian Mutiny.”
“Shipped 30 pounds of butter to NY on PRR for $31.”
“Patchy fog this morning but Sunny for the day. One little shower this afternoon. Breezy.”
Right. “Breezy” is showing up in modern weather reports but my great grandfather never used the word in his life.
Probably because he liked words and used them with precision.
Friday morning started pretty grim looking. 80° and 69% humidity which is better than it has been but the sky full of heavy-bottomed black clouds. It was supposed to be mostly sunny with just the slightest 10% chance of showers so the clouds confused us. And “becoming breezy.” Heh. East winds about 15 in the morning increased to 20 – 25 mph by my afternoon beach time. I guess breezy meant about 20 mph on Friday. Better than “fresh,” I guess.
Saturday was mostly sunny, and “breezy” again. Local television meteorologist Trent Aric called it “blustery” Friday night.
I see it will be “sunny and breezy” in Southwest Puffin with wind gusts up to 30 mph this afternoon.
The Urban Dictionary calls the word breezy “a combination of the two words which describe a woman that is easy. The word ‘broad’ is combined with the word easy creating the derogatory word ‘breezy’.”
That was a lot of help.
Breezy could an adjective meaning “pleasantly windy.” Yourdictionary.com comes closest to my own idea by calling breezy, “slightly windy.” And the American Heritage dictionary calls it “a light current of air; a gentle wind.” Now we’re talking.
The second American Heritage quantifies the breeze as “any of five winds with speeds of from 4 to 27 knots, according to the Beaufort scale.”
Uh oh. That’s still a pretty informal approach to a definition.
Sir Francis Beaufort’s Wind Force Scale gives wind speeds in measurable velocities and describes those speeds in terms of empirical observations at sea or on land. A light breeze (3-6 knots) brings mall wavelets and leaves begin to rustle. In the gentle breeze (7-10 knots), brings some whitecaps to the Straits and the leaves and small twigs move constantly. Moderate breeze (11-15 knots) means small breaking waves, dust and paper in eddies in the air, and palm fronds dancing. The fresh breeze (16-20 knots) is getting serious with some spray coming aboard and small trees swaying. A strong breeze (21-26 knots) takes your garbage can.
I fell in lust with Kay Lenz when she played Kate Jordache in the TV series Rich Man, Poor Man but she made her bones as Breezy, a teen-aged hippy with heart. Clint Eastwood directed her in the film of the same name. It’s a schmaltzy story of a hitchhiker who escapes a man who wanted her for only sex.
So I’m thinking the weather peeps should use the appropriate qualifiers unless they want us to use these breezes only for sex.