July 22, 2018

Besides having a kickin' opening theme, Barney Miller was one of the staples of my youthful TV watching. This one guy from the episode The Blizzard stuck with me- he was convinced a new ice age was upon us, and was arrested for assaulting people to try and get their attention...

In viewing the episode I was surprised how little he shows up in the episode, relative to how much he stuck in my head. Later two of the detectives, Nick Yemana and Dietrich are talking about him:

"Hey Dietrich - it's snowing heavier than ever. You don't think he's right, do ya?"
"Well a new ice age can't happen overnight. However, scientists have been detecting disturbing changes in weather conditions, which theoretically could lead to a calamity, such as an ice age in our lifetime."
"I didn't know that."

And then later, Nick, Grodin, and Barney are talking, as Grodin is being released:

"It stopped snowing, Barney."
"You're not serious?? [...] I don't understand went wrong - there was research and study, measurements and observations. Could it be all wrong?"
"Maybe it's just premature, Mr. Grodin."
"It's turning to rain."
"A flood! Maybe that was it. It does make sense from a theological point of view."
"Never say die, Mr. Grodin..."

Interesting to see climate fears back then. I know some deniers are like "huhr huhr we used to think it was an ice age and now we think it's gonna heat up?" but for decades we'd known that adding energy and gasses to our climate system was going to add to some big things to the mix...