Thursday on WHCB, I played a weather song during Bible Buddies, our 3-5pm kids show. A few months back, a listener requested the song, as it has…well…Miss Piggy from the Muppets slamming the door (on Elvis) at the end.
The official name of that song is “The Air We Breathe,” and it’s one of the songs by The Weather Dude, also known as The Weather Channel’s Nick Walker. I’ve featured a couple of his songs here before, probably this one at one time or the other. But I’ll give it a fresh look here.
In the song, Nick and his friends sing about what they do when air quality is bad. That normally happens when pollution from cars and factories doesn’t get transported and dispersed by wind once they’re let out into the air. That makes it difficult for people with problems with their lungs (like asthma, something I have) to breathe. If the air gets bad enough, it’ll make it difficult for anyone to be outside.
Around the Tri-Cities, that happens normally in the summer. We don’t get cold fronts that accomplish much in the summer, and a lot of times it’s sunny and hot all the time. Thunderstorms do help this, but rarely are storms too widespread in the summer. That means the levels of pollutants in the atmosphere will go up to the point that it’s hard to breathe. At that point you will hear from me that there’s an air quality alert. That happened at least three or four times last year, in fact.
When that happens, the best thing usually to do is to not use cars or lawn mowers too much if you can help it, and generally stay inside. That will help you breathe better thanks to all the filters in your home. The Air Quality Index for the Tri-Cities can be found at the AirNow.gov website. That is a good one to keep bookmarked and check often, especially in the summer!
Be sure to visit Nick Walker’s website for more about his music and how you can get your own copy if you want to. He has a specific page for each of his songs, too, and here’s the one about “The Air We Breathe.” You can find lots more info on air quality there, and even some links for games to play just for kids!