20 07 2010

my body is not equipped for high temperature regulation.  thus, over the last two weeks of MOTHERFUCKING RIDICULOUS HEAT, i have been a little wilted. and by a little wilted, i mean possibly suffering from heat stroke. why just saturday afternoon after sizzling in the summer sun as amplified by the heat coming off the generators and fryolators  at the yarmouth clam festival carnival, i passed out on the couch in a stupor. this would be an otherwise unremarkable event (as i am often passed out in a stupor from various causes ranging from sleep deprivation to excessive champagne consumption), but the boyfriend foolishly handed my partially conscious self a glass of ice water, which i then proceeded to dump all over both my crotch and my couch as i lapsed into complete unconsciousness  (which was brief on account of the ice crotch).

point being, it’s hot, and i’m no good at it.  in my other life at part time vagabond, i was just writing about (as part of my article about how to make stay-cations less suck-cations) how maine is not really an AC state. it’s cold here most of the time, and foolish things like central air just don’t make sense. window units are somewhat more sensible, but not if you can already barely afford to pay your electric bill.  buying an expensive piece of equipment that will make said electric bill even less manageable, isn’t really an option.  also not an option, putting an air conditioner in a room where the only window is a skylight (stupid sweaty 3rd floor condo). so not only is it hot, but there isn’t a whole hell of a lot i can do about it:

1. build up a cross breeze- my place is really not very well ventilated. 2nd & 3rd story with slanty ceilings and oddly placed windows, i’ve got to get at least 2 box fans going in combination with opening every window in the house. the major downside to this is that not all of my windows have screens, and after sundown, throngs of angry mosquitoes flock to my light sources and cover me in itchiness. it’s exactly like camping without actually camping.

2. cozy up to a cold pack- yeah, i’ve been sitting on those freezer packs that you put in the mini cooler with your juice boxes and tiny yogurts. as it turns out, they’re just as good at keeping my juiceboxes cool. although, unless you wrap it up in a towel first, you are in danger of getting some frostbite on your cooch. not cute.

3. make some popsicles-  when it’s soul meltingly hot outside, sometimes even ice cream is too heavy to be refreshing.  popsicles (take it. break it. share it. love it.) on the other hand, are perfection. kate over at the blueberry files inspired me to make some sophisticated adult popsicles, but all i bothered to do was freeze some limeade into ice cubes and throw it in my tequila. as it turns out, heavy drinking is not good for dehydration. maybe i should have just dug up my old snoopy sno-cone machine.

4. embrace the power of chiffon- what i hate about the heat is that there is only so much you can take off before you have to start peeling off your own skin. but even when naked seems like a good idea, i still don’t have curtains on my downstairs windows, and i don’t really feel like subjecting my neighbors to such horrors. zsa zsa knows best, so i found myself some frilly chiffon numbers that cover up most of the unfortunate bits, while still being almost as light as nothing at all.

5. escape to the mall– at the most dire of times, i often escape to target or the mall. basically, anywhere with AC and a starbucks. it’s not glamourous, and it’s not even the beach, but sometimes it’s nice to seal yourself into a windowless box and forget about the smelly sweatworld outside.

yeah, this list is pretty sad. that’s why this is the part where you tell me what humiliating things you’ve been doing to stay cool, so i can feel less bad about myself.



9 responses

20 07 2010

Well I have been running our 3 window A/C units 24/7, I don’t even want to see my CMP bill next month. Might need a side hustle giving handjobs to pay that bill off. 🙂 However in a 127yo 10 room house 3 units don’t really make tha place cold, just not as oppressive. Let’s just say without them there is no way I’d be cooking anything in this house.

The heat is definitely screwing with my budget since generally I am seeking activities that involve ample cool air, so I have been hanging at the mall, Goodwill, etc. Sadly I lack restraint so going to these places is like asking a recovering crack addict to visit a crackhouse…you know you are going to use or in my case spend. I just realized I have barely gone to the beach this summer, but let’s be real its been 800 degrees, why would I want to go some place and still be hot.

I don’t even have the benefit of A/C at work, only my office has AC but I run a community center so barracading myself in the coolness of the cave is not an option.

If I were not on a no-spend kick I’d have to seek out some chiffon since right now I have ran through my real summer clothing. Like you said its Maine, so unlike when I lived in the midwest and had a wardrobe of skimpy clothing for 900 degree days that has not been required in Maine till recently.

21 07 2010

dear lord. i both envy you and am sort of horrified at the prospect of your electric bill. i would definitely start working on your wrist strength though- you’re gonna need it for all those parking lot hand jobs! along with no AC, another thing that maine has going for it is that the houses are big and OLD. especially in portland proper, there’s like no new construction. cold and drafty in the winter, oven hot in the summer… what were the victorians thinking when they built all these monsters? i am lucky enough to have AC at work, and have recently found myself coming in early and staying late (eek!). good luck locating your chiffon!

20 07 2010

1. Cold Showers. On a hot weekend day, I can take 3 of them. One in the mid-morning, one mid-afternoon, one before bed. It’s the only thing that enables me to actually do *something* around the house. Do an hour of chores, cold shower, lay very still and read.
2. No-cook cooking. Lots of salads, sandwiches, and cold cereal. If I absolutely must cook, then the grill and the toaster oven are my friends.
3. Careful climate control. We have a window unit in our bedroom, but otherwise the house is un-air conditioned. If the sun is up, the blinds are closed tight. (Seriously, blinds or curtains will be your best friend. I recommend getting some!) Once the sun goes down, I keep a close eye on the outside temp. When the temp outside is lower than the temp inside all the windows get thrown open so the house can start cooling off.
4. Escape. This is absolutely sometimes the only option! Luckily living in DC, we have lots of free, air conditioned museums, which is good if you want to cool down and not spend money. The library is good for that as well. In fact my grandparents didn’t have air conditioning and they used to go to the library almost everyday in the summer for an hour or two.

21 07 2010

how could i forget cold showers?! absolutely essential. yeah, the general consensus seems to be that i get some curtains, but i’m not sure what kind. do they need to be heavy? is it a mistake to get dark colored curtains? what about blinds, do they have the same effect? (sorry so many questions! i’m a curtains virgin). you are exceptionally lucky to have some many great free and (air conditioned) places to haunt. We do have a brand spanky new library (which is a great idea from a number of budgetary angles), and the museum is free on fridays… but it hardly compares. DC is one of my favorite cities.

23 07 2010

I’m afraid I don’t have much advice about curtains. I’m sort of anti-curtain, so we don’t have any (I like the way they look, I just don’t ever want to clean them – so blinds it is!) I can tell you that blinds work quite well – and can be gotten for relatively cheaply at the Home Depot or Lowe’s.

20 07 2010

if you have the funds (which i know don’t have much, but maybe find these) have celing fans installed. i don’t give a flying fuck what all the HGTV idiots think about them, they’re awesome. here in tx, even WITH central AC standard (and legally mandated in rental properties!), you can’t survive 80% of the year without them. they can be installed on slanty vaulted celings with a little more work (there are extender thingies). they are your friend and will become your favorite lover soon.

21 07 2010

i always wondered about why they hated ceiling fans so much. they’re completely practical, and not ugly if you get something simple. whatevs HGTV. unfortunately, my bedroom ceiling is REALLY LOW, and a ceiling fan would definitely be a decapitation hazard. i can’t believe that central air is LEGALLY MANDATED for rental properties. maybe it’s time to relocate?

20 07 2010

I bought a $30 ceiling fan on clearance at Lowes. Probably w/ a 10% coupon. Works like a charm unless you’re over 6 feet tall, in which case it’s a scalping hazard. Also, no raising the roof near the ceiling fan. We also keep the curtains closed during the day to keep our 1,394,036,852 cats cool.

21 07 2010

that’s exactly my worry. my upstairs ceilings are just not tall enough to not seriously injure everyone who isn’t laying down or crawling, and those are the rooms that really need the help. although it does seem like the general consensus is that i should get some curtains. i’m sure my neighbors would greatly appreciate it!

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