fun · San Francisco

"Summer Lovin’" is Putting it Mildly

So here’s how I see it: I get to REVEL in the marvelousness of this completely unseasonable
warm, sunny, vibrant climate-change-induced weather. But to make up for it,
I’ll practice conserving water? Deal?
I know it’s awful to
feel like this shadenfreude kind of feeling about the planet – getting off on
the poor withering and decimation of natural resources. However, I gotta tell
you – I probably haven’t felt this open-chested in years.
I. Love. The. Heat. I know Bay Areans are of mixed minds –
most of the locals love the fog and the temperate, mid-range, year-round
temperatures. I, however, can’t stand
that I feel like I never get the time to thaw out properly. This was especially
worse for me when living in SF, and despite my claims of woe-is-me about living
on this side of the bridge, the weather
is better.
See, the problem that no one else seems to think is a
problem is that the nice days tend to be COMPLETELY unpredictable. When I moved
here, everyone claimed to high heaven about the “Indian Summer,” i.e. the warmer months of September and October. But in my tenure here in the Bay, each year,
there’s maybe 3 days where it hits 80 or above, but those days are not in a
row.
So, really, there’s no predictability,
and no sense, for me, of ease and comfort that comes with the knowledge that
“it’ll be hot this week.” Nope. Not my experience here. Sure, it gets warmer in
those months, but, nevertheless, even so, at 7pm, as soon as the sun hits the
water, the temperature drops radically, and we’re back to the whole “layering”
theme that San Franciscans seem to have learned at birth.
On the east coast, which is all the other experience I have
– well, in South Korea too, — there are seasons. Say it with me people – SEASONS. There are ENTIRE MONTHS when you
have the absolute knowledge that you will not need your winter coat. We call
this Summer. Not qualified Summer. Not Indian Summer. Not mythic summer. Just
damned Summer. We call it wearing tank tops INTO THE NIGHT. We call it warm summer
evenings, sitting out with a glass of iced anything, and the slight coolness just enough to warrant jeans, maybe, but you will NEVER need a jacket in August at
night.
Perhaps this is a rant. But, I’m genuinely chagrined at the
unpredictable nature of weather here. I NEED time to defrost. To thaw out. I
need consistent time to sleep naked with just a sheet and all the windows open. I need to feel
that each and every last cell in my body has sloughed off its introverted
winter layer, and has come out to bask in the glorious healing power of the sun
– my very blood cells want to hoist on an inflatable duckie and high dive into
the glistening pool of hot.
In Judaism, there is a law. If there are two people in a
room, and one is cold, and the other is hot, the cold person gets the say on
changing the temperature – this is an old law, having been written when the
person who was cold was more likely to get sick and die, so it was a
preservation thing. But, I dig that law. I’m ALWAYS cold – unless, of course,
I’m not. Unless I really get to sink into the warmth and sun and gut-releasing,
lung-expanding breaths of sun-caked air. I personally really need the heat.
Furthermore, and I’ll wrap it up, for me, there is
something that feels so closed off about too much coldness. As I’m always on
the colder end of the spectrum, I spend a lot of my time “out” thinking of the
next warm place I’ll be, or just thinking “fuck, i’m cold.” In winter anywhere, you see people huddled into their
coats, marching as fast as possible to the next sanctuary of warmth – and to me, it
just feels so isolating. No one to nod hello to, no one to stop and chat with; you’re inverted, huddled, hurrying, and busy getting somewhere. Summer is quite
the opposite. You laze. You loll. You amble and stroll.
I know this unseasonably warm weather we’re having is just
another death knell of the planet. I realize that perhaps even the very next
generation will have zero concept of what seasons are, as the weather continues
to play “Gotcha!” on all of the coasts. But, I will gladly take an army shower, carry as many
reusable bags as I need to, and even… G-d help me – take public transit, if it
means I get to go outside today wearing a dress, flip flops, and the world’s
goofiest grin. 

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