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It's That Time of the Year

I'm afraid…it's that time of year.

Yes, the time of year when the temperature never drops below ninety overnight. The time of year when gnats are abundant, more than abundant, they inundate the atmosphere, and for some reason can't find a way to do their little gnat dancing somewhere, say, oh, a dozen feet higher.

When you're on a bicycle and you fly through a cloud of gnats, it's no fun. I always hate the prickly feeling the little phuckers make when they collide with my skin. You take a mouthful, or, worst of all, an eye full.

That'll spoil your ride.

But then imagine if you will, that there's not one cloud, but many clouds. Cloud after freaking cloud. I mean at the end of that ride, I look like someone has come after me with a bottle of course ground pepper!

Then there's the sweat.

I know, this is TMI, but it must be understood that when I get hot, I don't just sweat. I pour. Guys from other teams would refuse to guard me in basketball because of the profusive nature of my diaphoresis. (As an aside, when I eat really flaming hot sauce, the same thing happens, often leading to certain members at the table remarking, rudely, I think, and overly harshly, about the inappropriateness of my inclination to sweat. Looking at you, former spouses and girlfriends.)

For me, of course, sweating is a life saver. For real! I mean, I'm like Hunter S. Thompson—the time to worry is not when you're sweating profusely but when you stop sweating. I sometimes tell people I'm like a little nuclear reactor. (The aforementioned partners would also refuse to let me sleep under the covers with them, as I caused the under-blanket temperatures to rise uncomfortably—and not in a good way.)

My engine just runs hotter than normal, and has the cooling system to accommodate it.

No, the sweating isn't a problem. The problem is when I’m on a bicycle in mid-summer in Phoenix, Arizona at this time of year. It's only when I have to ride in ninety plus degree temperatures, with humidity above average, adding that extra little discomfort to the occasion. (I always like to think the humidity feels like you've added a parka to your wardrobe amidst all the heat.)


What really causes problems, though, is when my Gutr fails and the sweat flows freely from my forehead, like a water wall for an indoor nursery, trying to keep the plants from perishing in the unnatural heat. The sweat pours and the Gutr channels it to the sides, dumping the flow out onto the fertile grounds of my temples. Wait, what?

The Gutr works superbly—as long as the load isn’t too extreme. For two thirds of the year, I can use it and it's no sweat. (See what I did there? I know, I know, Dave Barry wouldn’t even ask that question. All I can say is: I’m no Dave Barry!)

But.


At this time of year? That wall of water comin' off my forehead is unstoppable. In no time, the latex damn has lost the battle and sweat is cascading down over it, rolling, following the contours, right into my frickin' eyeball. Ow! Salt water stings! Maybe instead of diverting the water, I should build a desalinization band that processes the salt out of my sweat as it courses down my forehead. Maybe throw a little hydroelectric in there, generate some electricity, just from the supply coming off my scar-faced forehead. (I have a lot of scars on my head—and you can read about how I got some of them in the members area of my website, unkillbilllysbombshelter.)

I don't want to say I sweat a lot but the Central Arizona Project identified my supply of sweat as an emergency resource in times of drought!

It does take some of the pleasure out of the ride.

On the other hand, I don't have to stop riding my bike at any time of year in this city. Can't say that about every city.

So I shouldn't complain! If it just wasn't cloud after cloud—with the sweat stinging!

My suggestion for curse of the day: "May a cloud of gnats dance in your linen closet".




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