El Niño: Please. Call me "L."
GW: All right, L. We haven't met formally, but in 1998 you did ruin my best dress shoes.
L: Sorry, man. Nature of the beast.
GW: Weather forecasters insist you will be paying L.A. another visit this winter big-time. But they said that last year too.
L: Last year I got a last-minute freebie to Orlando. You got lucky. But I'm already ramping up for this year's gig.
GW: Do you intend to cause widespread flooding and mudslides?
L: "Widespread" is a such a loaded term.
GW: But you expect to live up to the hype?
L: Hey, does Noah sleep in hip-waders?
GW: Um, yes?
L: It's not like I can control it. I'm like the Hulk.
GW: Anger is a factor?
L: How would you feel if you had a giant plastic-particle trash island for a belly button?
GW: I see your point.
L: Look, you've had a four-year drought. I'm about to do you a favor.
GW: Scientists say it won't be enough to end our shortage.
L: Scientists can kiss my sweet Kiribati.
GW: They have dubbed you "El Niño," which implies a selfish, spoiled and impulsive nature. How do you feel about that?
L: I'm good.
GW: You'd say that's accurate?
L: Well, I'd prefer "random periodic warming of the equatorial Pacific," but you pick your battles.
GW: What would you like people to know about you that maybe they don't already?
L: I'm single and looking. I like smooth jazz, although whalesong makes me nuts. Doesn't it make you crazed?
GW: It does.
GW: It sounds like cats bungie-jumping.
L: What are cats?
GW: Um...like fish, only more aloof.
L: Like clams?
GW: Yes, like furry clams. Listen, I know you can't help yourself. I know you're just a weather effect, and you do what you do. But people are worried you're going to rip out piers and docks and wreak havoc this winter.
L: You want your lakes refilled, don't you? Your trout streams?
GW: Yes, but...
L: Your farmers want to grow those thirsty almonds?
L: You got to take the bad with the good. Buy a new umbrella. Get your roof replaced.
GW: Every roofer is booked until next summer.
L: I am good for business. You know what they say—every random periodic warming has a silver lining.
. . .