Here's what the National Hurricane Center has to say (public advisory and forecast discussion) about the storm melodramatically (and cross-dressingly) labeled "the mother of all storms" by the mayor of New Orleans. (How many people remember the origin of that "mother of" formulation? I think it's time to retire the phrase and try some new personifying descriptions. A hurricane of Gustav's reputation could be called anything from "unwelcome visitor" to "mannerless brute." Any other suggestions? While we're at it, we'd like also recommend a lifetime media ban on use of "The Big Easy" to describe New Orleans. If some hard-up news writers need a colorful handle for the city, let them use "The City that Care Forgot.")
What's it like down there in hurricane country? A blogger acquaintance I've followed for quite some time is named Rob. He lives near Bush, Louisiana, about 50 miles north of New Orleans. His blog is called Crabapple Lane, and he's reporting on his preparations for the storm--including explaining why he's choosing to ride it out at home rather evacuate. It's compelling, immediate stuff. Thanks, Rob--we're pulling for you.