New York -- Almost a quarter of the American population has shifted its views on the existence of hurricanes, according to a Harris poll conducted in the aftermath of hurricane Irene.
The 24% rise brings the total of "hurricane believers" to over 312 million US citizens.
The number of Americans who call themselves "hurricane deniers," meanwhile, has dwindled to three. They are:
-- A 36-year-old woman who lives in Death Valley, California and has been blinded by the light.
-- A 24-year-old Brooklyn Heights atheist who doesn't believe in anything.
-- And Sen. John McCain (R-Arizona) who believes we should get out of Vietnam.
Among those who shifted their views and now believe in the existence of hurricanes is Sheila Watson, 42, formerly of Hilton Head, South Carolina.
"Irene converted my house into a fishing trawler," she said. "The house was already underwater, according to my mortgage banker. Now it's a moneymaker, all thanks to the miracle of the hurricane."
Republican presidential contender Michele Bachmann was also among the converts. "Now that I believe in them, I'm going to make hurricanes illegal, just like we did with marijuana and other dangerous drugs," she said.
"We'll see how hard these darn things blow after serving some hard time."
Former Vice President Al Gore, now an environmental opportunist, noted that hurricanes are gaining popularity because they have cute names.
"For instance, when I started calling my ex-wife 'Tipper,' I found that I needed fewer therapeutic massages," Gore said. "Makes me think of the days Tipper and I were battling that freaky Zappa guy. I'm going to personally make sure they never name a hurricane after him."