Bow Down to Pete Delkus, Weather God

Categories: People 2014

DAL_People_Pete_Delkus.jpg
Can Turk
In this week's Dallas Observer we profile 20 of the metro area's most interesting characters, with new portraits of each from local photographer Can Turkyilmaz. See the entire Dallas Observer People Issue here.

Pete Delkus always thought he'd be a pitcher. But as he and his big arm rose through the Minnesota Twins organization, Delkus suffered a career-ending elbow injury in the minors. Suddenly he couldn't be a pitcher anymore. Turning to sportscasting, the way so many do when the fates conspire to stop them from achieving their own sporting dreams, Delkus found himself in a situation. The weather reporter had died, and his boss was convinced Delkus was the man to fill in.

Despite being the station's sports reporter, and not knowing a cirrus from a cumulonimbus, Delkus gave it a go. He stuck with it. He got his meteorology qualifications. People seemed to like him. In fact, they really liked him.

Fast forward a decade or two, and Delkus has made Dallas-Fort Worth his home, while Dallas-Fort Worth has made him its weatherman. Excitedly reporting on the latest weather catastrophe to befall our windy, sun-baked burg, Delkus' personality and quirks have made him a cult figure among WFAA viewers and pushed him to wider attention.

It doesn't hurt that his Twitter account, where he consistently (and cheekily) takes credit for the weather closing schools, and endlessly retweets pictures of his favorite clouds, is one of the most entertaining ones out there. There's even a Twitter account dedicated to monitoring whether Delkus' sleeves are currently rolled up or firmly down, the status of which is said to relate directly to the severity of the unfolding weather crisis. There's a Facebook page where he is hailed as St. Delkus and constantly implored as if he were some weather god to save us from any and all kinds of terrifying meteorological horror. To some people Pete Delkus doesn't just tell us what the weather is; the weather is dancing to Delkus' tune.

Let's face it: We get a lot of weather in Dallas. Not "weather" in the sense that sometimes Dallas is bright or sometimes Dallas is overcast. We get tornadoes, hail, flash floods, ice storms, temperatures that will boil you alive, temperatures that will turn you into a popsicle. It's never dull. And we, the people of Dallas, have elected St. Peter Delkus to lead us through these crises, ever-smiling, a man for all seasons. That reflects pretty well on us. Long live St. Delkus.


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27 comments
CaptFantastic
CaptFantastic

Look, Pete Delkus is the handsome curtain, but truth is Steve "The Professor" McCauley is the true man standing behind it.

CaptFantastic
CaptFantastic

Pete Dulkus is the handsome curtain, but Steve "The Professor" McCauley is the man behind it.

WaitWhat
WaitWhat

I liked Zuri Hall.  It's one thing if you have a super weather nerd, but if it's just some personality pointing at a map, I'll take the one with the nicest profile.

thejohnykat1
thejohnykat1

All hail the Saint! We in North Texas live, simple because he allows it. Bow down, bow down I say! 

Sotiredofitall
Sotiredofitall topcommenter

Chicken Little needs to bow down to the once and forever true weather king - Harold Taft

Myrna.Minkoff-Katz
Myrna.Minkoff-Katz topcommenter

Belkus Shmelkus.  I like that Stan Henry over on channel 4. 

Dub919
Dub919

STEVE MCCAULEY IS THE ONE TRUE GOD!

RobertStinson
RobertStinson

Delkus was better than Willie Banks, but not as good as Scott Erickson.

MEMV
MEMV

Pete's perfect for Dallas.  In our house we call him the "Weather Score guy" (and Dale is the Sports Forecaster).  Pete treats weather events like sports events, cheering for us to break the records for the hottest, coldest, iciest, wettest, driest days - all he needs is some weather girl cheerleaders in the background (Go Rain Go!).

Pete_Delkus_Sleeves
Pete_Delkus_Sleeves

Yes, we do love us some Pete!  Unfortunately, or maybe fortunately, we have not gotten to experience Tornado Pete this year.  and thanks for the shout out Gavin


Love,

@DelkusSleeves

bmarvel
bmarvel topcommenter

@ThePosterFormerlyKnownasPaul  Taft was avuncular and reassuring, former Paul. But he didn't have anything like the technology Delkus commands, and therefore his forecasts were nowhere as accurate or useful.

NewsDog
NewsDog

@bmarvel @ThePosterFormerlyKnownasPaul   bmarvel you ignorant slut.

It was Dr. Harold Taft, PhD. He was the first TV weather guy who had a Doctorate, a real Doctorate not an Honary, in meterology. He understood weather the way most people understand breathing. And he educated the D/FW television audience.  

ThePosterFormerlyKnownasPaul
ThePosterFormerlyKnownasPaul topcommenter

@bmarvel @ThePosterFormerlyKnownasPaul 

On the contrary, I grew up watching Mr. Taft.  He did a lot with what little we had at the time. He was often hours ahead of warning of possible severe weather.  I remember when you only had minutes of warning of a tornado.  Knowing that bad weather might be coming in the afternoon was good to know.  It helped you plan your day.


Things were vastly different back then.

bmarvel
bmarvel topcommenter

@NewsDog @bmarvel @ThePosterFormerlyKnownasPaul Newsdog -- I spent several evenings with the late Doctor Taft as he prepared his weathercasts, and have great respect for him. But I wonder, how much of this praise for his forecasts, years after the fact, is just nostalgia?

He was good. But I'd take Delkus with his technology any day over Taft with his slide rule. (Yes.He actually used one!)

ThePosterFormerlyKnownasPaul
ThePosterFormerlyKnownasPaul topcommenter

@bmarvel @NewsDog @ThePosterFormerlyKnownasPaul 

Howard had one great piece of advice for anyone who wanted to be a weatherman: "Look out the window before you go on air.".

bmarvel
bmarvel topcommenter

@Sotiredofitall @ScottsMerkin @ThePosterFormerlyKnownasPaul @bmarvel So tired -- I remember one broadcast, just after Mount St. Helens erupted, I believe -- when  Harold Taft took out a little bag of fine grit  and poured it out. Volcanic ash, he explained. The reason our sunsets were so gorgeously crimson.It was a gimick, a "schtick." But a great one. I'm betting his viewers remembered that long after they forgot the day's weather.

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