The weather, or: People can be such wusses.

The NOAA issued a hazardous weather advisory for most of New England yesterday. Apparently, 90°F counts as a borderline emergency out here. They also flip the fuck out whenever the ambient humidity drops below about 40%, and issue fire risk notifications.

Naturally, I took all the proper precautions: I refilled the ice trays, and put the vodka in the freezer.

One of the more amusing side effects of living in civilization now is that the people around me seem to consider Mother Nature to be dangerously insane. I suppose when you've built up your city to the point where sufficiently clever planning means you never have to walk more than about a hundred feet in the open air, you tend to lose your sense of weather as just ambiance that happens, and consider it to be an event that is happening, right now. I quite understand why this is the case for, say, major hurricanes, which amount to short bursts of environmental violence that pose a direct and immediate threat to anyone standing in them. I just feel slightly askew whenever I'm reminded that the lifelong ability to avoid the damn weather at all times translates into people needing to be told that if they're so hot they're seeing sparks and getting the whirlies, they should probably go inside and have a drink of water.

Arizonans go all the way in the other direction, to the point of macho stupidity. You don't really complain about things in cowboy country; you either endure them, or you get the fuck out. This goes for everything, not just the climate -- "America: Love it or leave it," is also pretty big out there in the red states, which explains a lot about their rather scary policies in re: correctional facilities, and illegal immigration.

It hit 122°F once when I was in grade school. Rather than shut the city down for temperatures that really might, in fact, kill people who had to be out in them, some bright soul printed commemorative t-shirts. I am not sorry I moved.

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