Rainfall reputation

What are the two things we learn about reputations?

The first is that we “earn” them.
The second is that they “precede” us.

That’s always confused me from a logical standpoint: if in fact I “earned” a reputation, that implies – at least to some degree – that I performed some sort of work beforehand to achieve it.

That would mean, by deductive reasoning, that “I” (not the “reputation”) had to be first. Otherwise (as the saying goes), if the reputation “preceded” me:

I would have “inherited” it instead!

That decisive revelation brings me to rainfall in Belgium.

I had been amply forewarned about Belgium’s notoriously reputation as a soggy, stormy and – if you are walking down a hill after a rain shower (on account of the plentitude of slugs sliming their way across the road) – slippery country.

Belgium is to rain what Florida is to sun:

Expect it every day, and yes – in both cases, your best bet to protect yourself (from the soaking and sunburn) is to use an umbrella.

That’s why I was shocked to find, in looking at the data, that Florida gets more rain then Belgium.

Clearly, one reputation is at fault – either Florida is not the sunshine state or Belgium is not the rainfall country.

(Is it apples and oranges to compare a state to a country? Not really, Florida has 12 million residents in comparison to Belgium’s 10 million.)

This is a hydrologic parlor trick of sorts.

The slight of hand is in glancing over evaporation and lumping the rainfall numbers annually.

Belgium may not get as much rain, but it makes up for that “lost water” by having a much lower evaporation rate … and here’s the kicker: four seasons of rain.

That keeps the Belgium country side green and its water barrels full …

Are reputations earned?

When it comes to Belgium rain, yes … every week.

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