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This post is part of my 2022 Word Project. You can read what that’s about here.

Tuesday, July 18, 2023

My word today is hot. STUPID RIDICULOUS HOT. Oh, and I had to wear jeans because when I put on the pants I bought specifically to wear this week, it turns out they don’t REALLY match with any of the shirts I bought, and Ralph said eh, not crazy about that. Why don’t you wear your jeans?

So I wore jeans, not because they fit, not because they felt good, but because they were the only respectable thing I had to wear today.

The word is hot and it theme is: when it’s hot, this is what you should not do.

Namely, wear jeans.

I want to go on record and say that I like it hot. I like the sun and the summer. I like heat on my skin. I would prefer to be warm than cool.

What I would not prefer is denim clinging like ten-pound Saran wrap to the lower half of my body while sweat drips down the back of my knees and into my shoes.

Ralph and I are not strangers to being warm. We typically do not put the air conditioning on until it’s about 85 degrees in the house, and only then if we’re moving around enough to feel overheated.

So when we do put the air conditioning on, you know we’re serious.

The thing is that the actual temperature is far removed from the perceived temperature. There are plenty of days where 85 inside feels much cooler than 75 outside, because it’s true what they say about humidity. Namely, that it’s miserable.

Today was, in fact, 98 degrees outside, which means it was really about 108 outside, and wet enough to turn you and everything you were wearing into a sack of drowned rats.

You can imagine my irritability level, and that’s before I get into the “what not to do’s” of living in 108 degree heat.

Here is Thing Number One you should not do in 108 degree heat: wear perfume.

It’s about 6000% humidity and you can barely breathe, the air is like a sopping wet beach towel in a sauna and a gaggle of women walked into the restaurant where we were having lunch doused in a Pigpen-level amount of perfume.

WHY? WHY???? Please, explain this to me. Explain to me why you have to soak yourself in perfume, let alone on a 98 degree day when everything is hanging in the air like laundry on a clothesline.

Not just dab it on, but enough that you’re a cloud of scented fog walking by. It permeates everything and I spent lunchtime wishing I was eating French fries but tasting perfume instead.

Is this a thing people like? Do men like women who reek of powdery mildew? I do not know.

Here is another thing you should not do when it’s 140 billion degrees, and it’s only about this town because I literally have never been in another town in my life where I have ever experienced this, but a certain faction of people think they need to inflict their musical tastes on the rest of the world. It’s not good enough to play music in their cars. It’s not even good enough to play it loudly. They have to OPEN THE WINDOWS and blast Shania Twain or something into the hanging, wet, dish towel heat.

It’s 20 zillion degrees and you’re melting, and if you’re wearing denim you’re melting worse, and these people are driving around with their windows open and the music at absolute top volume. Their back windows, mind you, because that’s how hot it is, it’s too hot to open your driver’s side window even to inflict your music on the town. You have to keep the AC on up front and open all your rear windows and play the music extra loud to make sure people within a twelve block radius know that man, you feel like a woman.

Please, explain this to me.

Shut the window, put the AC on and go away. Nobody wants to be more irritable than they are.

Finally, thing you should NEVER do, least of all in the 98 degree heat of a Tennessee July, is leave the house without deodorant.

I personally know people who are so into this idea of “natural” living that they won’t put anything on their skin. Because being a human garbage disposal is much more preferable, I guess. I try not be be judge-y but I really don’t want to be in a room with them most of the time. All I can say is that if I can smell you before I even cross paths with you, something has gone seriously awry.

Somewhere, somehow, there has to be a happy medium between bathing in chemical flowers and letting your natural stink shine through.

That’s all I’ve got for you today. Other than melting, eating perfume, listening to other people’s music, and smelling some guy from a block away, I had a pretty nice day. We spent it entertaining a friend who is in town for the conference, doing a distillery tour, cocktail hopping, and showing him around the local area.

We collectively said a lot of “hooooo it’s hot!” but were mostly having too much fun to notice. On a 98 degree day, in spite of everything else, that’s exactly how it should be.

Photo: Ralph and our friend Joel checking out the inside of a fermenting tank. It is NOT air conditioned in the distillery, but when you’re already melting and someone is offering a glass of whiskey, that’s not a bad thing.