It’s not too hard to figure out. “Leon” backwards is “Noel.” It’s June 25, not exactly halfway to Christmas (that would be tomorrow, I think), but the 25th is cooler than the 26th because why not?
The only thing that makes me happy this time of year (like right around summer solstice) is that the days are finally starting to get shorter rather than longer. And it’s not just the holidays. I truly don’t like summer days, and my birthday’s in June, which means I’ve always kinda dreaded my birthday. That’s not an exaggeration — the thought of my birthday is always a bit upsetting to me, not because I’m getting older, but because it means I’ve got about three months of heat and sunshine to (not) look forward to.
My brain just doesn’t work when it’s warm. I mentioned that it was the solstice to my wife, and she was all, “I know, finally summer!” And I was like, “No, no, I mean the sun won’t be up to scorch us all as much each day.” Her response was a legitimately pissed off, “Why do you have to ruin it for me!?” as I momentarily forgot one of the unspoken rules of our marriage which is not to verbally disagree with each other about things we don’t share but which the other feels deeply. One of those things for her is warm weather. She really gets seasonal depression of a sort during the winter. But, as I sat at one of the countless outdoor graduation parties we have to go to, sweltering in my miserable cloud of humid warmth, I forgot to pretend to be happy.
I’ve gotten better over the years. If you meet me outside in June or July now, you’ll no longer immediately notice that here’s a guy who truly has no interest in what’s going on around him other than figuring out the shortest route to a dark, artificially cooled area. I can engage in long conversations where I don’t seem particularly bothered by pint after pint of sweat dripping from my forehead and my shirt slowly changing color to a darker, wetter shade of whatever it is. I can seem normal.
Inside, though, I’m probably going on another TED-talk-for-one about why human beings (or at least this human) ought to be able to reverse-hibernate from April to early October. Or I’m dreading the fact that my body reacts to even the slightest amount of humidity by opening every pore and turning the perspiration valves on full blast. I’m only comfortable outside if it’s below 60, and even the 50s can make me itchy if it’s a damp 55.
I’m not joking. A friend of mine makes fun of me because I constantly wear Tommy Bahama or other “hawaiian” type shirts when it isn’t winter. It’s not because of my beach-loving nature, tho. No, I call those kinds of shirts the Fat Man’s Salvation because they’re roomy and airy enough to both keep you cool and, if you do start sweating, they don’t show it as easily. They’re pricey but worth it, trust me.
So all summer, it’s either that or quick dry stuff like Under Armor, which actually makes me feel hotter and grosser but doesn’t show.
This is my life half the year, and I don’t even live in a particularly hot place. But I grew up in Texas, so you think I’d be used to it. I remember one summer (’85? ’86?) with like more than 30 days straight of over 100 degree highs. But in Texas, you just never went outside. Around here, people spend the summers outdoors, and some fools don’t even turn on their air conditioners.
But I digress…I think this was supposed to be something out Leon Day? But whatever, it’s a made up excuse to post Christmas-y stuff in June. To me, though, it’s still friggin’ June, and the means suffering. I’m heading down to the basement just on principle.
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