I grew up in the San Francisco Bay area. I spent summers in Southern California. When I grew up, I moved to the desert. The one thing all of these places have in common is weather reporting.
The minute it rains in California, the world stops. Every single news station's weather person dons their raingear, finds a puddle to stand near, and begins shouting into the microphone, reporting on "Storm Watch 1985" or "Storm Watch 2010", etc.
I now live in Tornado Alley in the panhandle of Texas. As I was driving to work the other night, our local news reporter was updating the weather. He said, and I quote, "this storm contains 60mph winds and quarter size hail. We do not expect any severe weather out of this storm".
It's all a matter of perspective.