Feet spread wide, his body leaning sideways, Weather Channel reporter Mike Seidel braces himself against the furious winds and rain being hurled at Morehead City, North Carolina, by Hurricane Florence.
“We’re in one of those bands,” he says loudly into his hand-held microphone, as he struggles to keep his footing. “This is about as nasty as it’s been.”
Then, in the background, two men in shorts appear. They stroll casually past, chatting to each other, without even the slightest hint of a lean.
— Tony scar. (@gourdnibler) September 14, 2018
What IS this magic? They don’t seem to be struggl… Oh. Right.
— KristapsRobinson (@CarlosDngrfield) September 14, 2018
To be fair to the reporter, i think they said that the strong winds are localized…. like down to the 3 square feet he’s standing in…
— Paul Busch (@CaledonMoneyPit) September 14, 2018
The Weather Channel reporter certainly isn’t the first to have, shall we say, amplified the conditions during a live cross on US television.
There was this head-scratcher:
Oh, and this:
They attempted to make us take them/the weather event seriously, but alas...
It boggles the mind, really. Especially in Seidel's case, when the devastation being wrought by this slow-moving storm is so plain to viewers.
The text at the bottom of the screen during his segment captured a fraction of it. "More than 600,000 without power." "State of emergency for all counties in Georgia." "Evacuees congest roadways."
Since the Category 1 storm made landfall on Friday, it's been confirmed that at least five people have been killed in North Carolina, including a mother and child who died after a tree fell on their home in Willmington.
Winds have been clocked at 155km/h, seas at three metres and rainfall at 50cm within just a few hours. Conditions aren't expected to ease for several days.
In the meantime, at least there's been a tiny moment of comic relief. And not just from Seidel's antics.
As The Washington Post put it, "Come for the footage, stay for the official explanation from the Weather Channel".
"It’s important to note that the two individuals in the background are walking on concrete," the network told the paper, "and Mike Seidel is trying to maintain his footing on wet grass, after reporting on-air until 1:00 a.m. ET this morning and is undoubtedly exhausted.”
Get that man onto the concrete.