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The Dog Days


You're familiar with that term, that idiom, that brutal truth—the dog days of summer.

I'll spare you the etymology of the phrase. Suffice to say it's been around for a long time and starts sometime in mid to late July.

In places all over the northern hemisphere, there are dog days.

But.

In Arizona, we are talking some nasty ass dogs. And it's gettin' worse.

The weather folks in town love to track the statistics related to heat. There's the number of days over a hundred, which is a big number. Then there's the days over one ten. That total has been creeping up over the years, and this year we're way ahead of last year's rate—and the dog days have only just begun.

Me thinks there is some change going on in the climate.


Last week we broke the record for heat two days in a row—at 116. We've knocked off a handful of records already this summer, and more than a handful of high lows. By that I mean the overnight lows were record highs. It's averaged ninety-three degrees for the last three weeks when I start out on the bike at five in the morning. Over ninety. At the coolest point of the day.

You feel me?

It's the flip side of winter blues. In snow country, you get sick of the cold and snow in February, which I regard as every bit of dog days as the summer. Of course, in this real estate, February is prime time. We haven't had a hard freeze in three or four winters. That's no less an indication of the rising temps of climate change. No freezes, no dead bugs, particularly mosquitos. I wonder if mosquitos spread the virus?

Anyway, today when I got up, I decided I've reached dog day attitude. I’m so sick of riding in ninety plus heat…I just didn't go. Nope. Not today. It's Monday, I gotta get some things done, I can't afford to do a workout and then be knackered the rest of the day. The heat just sucks the energy out of ya! I can get a good workout in, but I'm shot for the rest of the day.

This is when I really miss the pool at my old address. Not the ghetto, the one before that. The artist's compound. They had a pool, a lap pool, not a big one, in fact, for swimming, I could get seven strokes before I had to turn around.

But.

It was great for running!

Serious, I could run laps in the little pool, which incidentally had a cover, so during the summer it stayed very cool. When it got too hot on the bicycle, I could still go out to the pool, often twice a day, and run some laps.

My current residence has a pool. Unfortunately, management won't open it Due To Coronavirus Restrictions. That means that pool prolly won't see any use for the first two years. Bummer.

There's something I hadn't thought about. If gyms are history, that takes out a chunk of swimming pools, and if gyms are history, aren't public pools as well? Where do all the swimmers go? I know, that's not a huge demographic…I just know I'd be real, real unhappy if someone took my bicycle away. Can't be a good situation for people who depend on swimming to stay in shape.

Sorry. Really, I didn't know where this was headed, but clearly, it's not towards a rose-colored future. I can just see me cataloging all the awful things that are about to transpire. A lot of things will be different. And it appears we are just now reaching the limits of the surreality we have been living, and we're going to see the emergence of hell on earth.

That's right. I'm talking about the dog days of the pandemic.




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