The kult of Al Kaprielian

By MIKE MILIARD  |  February 6, 2009

"Some people use the word 'crazy,' but I wouldn't say that," he demurs. "Television is different from radio. People can see your personality come over." In the winter, when the weather sucks, he psychs folks up for the spring that will come. In the summer, "when we're having great beach weather, I try to get all excited, because I know people want that."

Kaprielian, who's not married and has no children, says "the studio is kind of like a second home to me. If I'm not home, I'm here." But, of course, he says, "being a TV meteorologist is more than just being in front of the camera."

And so he makes it a point to get out and mingle with his public as much as possible, devoting considerable time to charities such as the MDA and American Heart Association, visiting elementary schools and appearing at high-glamour events like the Derry News Derryfest Cookie Contest.

Some celebrities shun their fame, but Kaprielian embraces his heroicomic prestige. Approached on the sidewalk or in the supermarket aisle, "I'll stop and talk," he says. "You can't ignore people. I enjoy it. It shows they're still watching."

More than just watching. Indeed, sometimes his fans can sound a little like weather zealots, ready to stick up for him against any slight. On a message board recently, one poster said he'd heard Kaprielian might be somewhat brusquer in person than his happy TV persona would suggest.

Immediately, a devotee leapt to the meteorologist's defense. "Anyone who has the balls to be successful" has earned that right, he shot back. "You think john lennon or bowie or even obama are sweet as pie?"

The reply, a few lines down: "I love that you compared Al Kaprielian to John Lennon, Bowie, and Obama."

Mike Miliard wants his own green screen. He can be reached at mmiliard@phx.com.

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