Arts & Culture

Stay Cool

By Norb Rug

It’s the middle of June and the air conditioners have already been running. My neighborhood sounds like a Luftwaffe air field late at night. I’m not ready for this kind of heat and with all of July, August and the first part of September left, here are some ways to beat the summer heat.

Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate. Keep a bottle of water with you during the day. To reduce your costs, carry a reusable water bottle and fill it with tap water. Keep a big pitcher of lemonade or water in your refrigerator. Your body depends on water to survive. Drink a big glass of your favorite soft drink. Store the glass in the freezer overnight and use lots of ice to make it as cold as you can. Pour yourself a big, tall glass of iced tea, load it up with ice and let it set till it is ice cold and the glass is sweating. Every cell in your body needs water. Your body uses water to maintain its temperature and remove waste.

Enjoy the cool. Get up early and enjoy the cool, pre-dawn time. Sitting on your porch having breakfast and listening to the birds is a summertime treat. If you are a walker, take your walk late at night when it is cooler. Look up at the stars. Listen to the sounds of a summer night, the crickets chirping, the frogs croaking and the crack of a bat hitting a baseball.

Get wet. Run through your yard sprinkler with your kids or grandchildren. Act like you are 5 years old again. If you don’t have children to do this with, put your sprinkler in your back yard so your neighbors won’t think you are losing it. Dangle your feet in the water of a pool or if you are so lucky a small stream. Nothing cools you off as good as having cold feet. Run out into those short summer rains. Let it soak you down. Dance in them like no one is looking.

Go swimming. Immersing your whole body in the cooling water of a pool is very refreshing. Go to the area pools and local aquatic parks. For a small fee, you could go swimming.  Just be sure to use a waterproof sun screen if you are outside. Soak down a midsized hand towel. Drape it around the back of your neck. Hold your wrists and the inside of your elbows under cold running water. Your blood vessels and veins are close to the surface in these areas. You will cool your blood and this will make you cooler.

Eat cool. Have a really big bowl of vanilla ice cream for lunch. Savor the frosty coolness as it slides down your throat. Cut up a big cantaloupe and set it in the fridge for later. A bowl of chilled melon makes an excellent summertime snack or even a lunch. Have a big piece of Key Lime Pie, right out of the refrigerator. Eat it slowly so you can enjoy every morsel. Remember that a salad makes an excellent hot weather meal. Plus it is light and low calorie. Eat a whole juicy peach right out of the refrigerator. Let the juice run down your chin. Make yourself a sandwich with mayo, white bread and a big, red, juicy center cut slice of a fresh home grown tomato. A fresh tomato sandwich is a summertime treat. Now that you are an adult, you can eat anything you want.

Relax. Take short naps in the heat of the day. A Siesta is a great way to recharge your batteries. Get a good book and read it in the shade of a really big tree. Occupying your mind with a good story
will help you forget how hot it is.

Find some air. Catch a breeze and stay with it. If you can’t find a breeze make one of your own by using a fan. Turn up the ceiling fan to high. We have a ceiling fan in our bedroom and dining room. We also have   one on our front porch in case Mother Nature doesn’t provide a breeze.

Dress cool. Break out the shorts, loose-fitting Hawaiian shirts and the big T-shirts. Leave the shirts untucked. GQ isn’t going to come over so you might as well be comfortable. Wear a hat, everywhere. That way you can make your own shade. Skip those hot shoes. Sandals are perfectly acceptable hot weather foot wear. Just don’t wear socks with them. Speaking of socks, skip the socks when you can. Socks or knee highs are out and unless you are a Catholic school girl.

Find the cool. Go to the public library. It’s always cool in there. Plus they have current magazines and
newspapers there not just books for you to read. Go to the shopping center or the mall. Get a really short haircut. Feel the breeze you were missing. Drive way out in the country with the windows down. Play the music loud and sing along.

Lastly, just remember that winter will be here way too soon and you will be complaining about the
cold and snow.

Norb is a writer from Lockport that is trying to stay cool this year. You can write to him at

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