Summer – or, How Does He Turn That Color?

- by Michael!

I do not like hot weather.

This may come as a surprise to you if we have never, ever met. Otherwise it should be pretty much obvious, as I must say at least once daily how warm / stuffy / sweltering it is in whatever space I find myself, and then turn on a fan. Or find an airconditioner. Or climb into a cryogenic embryo storage container. I’m not picky, as long as it’s cold.

There are many reasons for this heat antipathy, of course. Physical reasons. Like, I’m a large and hairy person with some obsessive compulsive tendencies. The second part of that sentence means that I absolutely MUST – at a physical, atomic level, I MUST – shower if I get really sweaty, while the first part of that sentence ensures that, in the summer, I’m almost always really sweaty. How much fun!

Also, I am pale. Very pale. So pale that I can achieve a brutish, lobster-colored, blister-laden sunburn in less time than it takes most people to open their car door to actually get out and go to the beach.

Needless to say, summer is not my favorite season.

Not to say I don’t have fond memories of summers gone by. Armed with gallons of sunscreen, I spent hours upon hours at the local swimming pool when I was a kid, and those were some of the happiest times of my childhood. I typically enjoyed summer camp, as none of my summer camp experiences involved outhouses. And my family has been known to take trips to the beach on a regular basis.

But even that last sentence is misleading.

For instance, there was a span of about four years wherein we went to a house that was technically at the beach – not right on it, but within a three-minute walk – and yet we spent perhaps a total of half an hour actually on the beach itself. On our first night there after the car ride. Yes, at night.

The rest of the time, we would sit in the house – or, if we were feeling truly adventurous, on the covered and screened in porch – and read. I used to bring a dozen books at a time to these excursions, and would invariably end up begging my parents to let me read some of theirs by the end of the week as I had already plowed through all of mine.

Other times, I went to the beach with friends, and I would certainly get out in the sun and be more active –which, of course, led to horrific sunburn, which led me to swear, every time, that I would avoid the sun like the radioactive ball of gas it is in the future. The sun is not my friend.

That’s not to say I don’t like the beach. I just tend to like it a lot more in February. It’s just as pretty, less crowded, and I don’t feel like I’m roasting slowly within my own juices.

So if you see me in the summertime, and it looks like I’m cranky or worried, don’t fret. I’m probably fine. Just looking for a shower.

Or a cryogenic embryo storage facility.

Whichever is closer.