It is often said that baseball is a game of inches. There are many times during a game when an inch or two difference in the location of the ball would change a strike to a ball, a swing and a miss to a hit, a double to a home run, a catch from a error.
On a much larger scale we can think of meteorology as a game of miles. The last two snow falls have been from coastal storms that were just far enough out to sea to only dust the city with snow. Had those storms been only a few more miles closer to shore we might have woken up to several inches of snow on the ground this morning.
There's a new storm expected to form over the southeastern U.S. tomorrow that looks like it will follow a similar track. Thursday night and Friday morning could be interesting. Because of that game of inches though, it is too soon to tell how interesting. The Weather Channel isn't giving the potential storm much thought, while the Weather Service has issued a special weather statement, which is their way of saying "Kids, perk up and pay attention!" but falls short of a watch or warning. Too bad Staten Island Chuck isn't making his prediction tomorrow instead of Friday.
Today should remain sunny, if a tiny bit on the cool side. Clouds arrive tomorrow and the storm, if there is one, tomorrow night. Groundhog Day is currently looking like a rainy, snowy mess. Friday is also the day that the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change releases their fourth assessment of the "present state of knowledge of climate change". Expect lots of hootin' and hollerin'. Skies should clear by Saturday as we head into another significant cool down through the early part of next week.
Northeastern snow cover map, it's not too far away, from the National Operational Hydrologic Remote Sensing Center.