I have a new hobby: sweating. Unfortunately, I do not like sweating—I don’t even like the word, which has an unfortunate sound in the mouth, almost as unfortunate as the act itself. There are a few good “sw” sounds—sweets for one, or swing dancing—but there’s also swearing, which I’m only happy about when I get to do it. I am not accustomed to sweating a good deal, so my recent sweatfest is not fun. I don’t sweat much normally, at least no more than the average and, in fact, I try to avoid activities that will make me sweat, as my dear sister reminds me of when I complain about my thighs and generally roly-poly stomach.
However, in Alabama, it seems, the mere act of being is enough to make one break a sweat, and I seem to be in a state of perpetual moistness all day, except for the moments when I enter my workplace and the AC hits me in a glacial blast. This feels good for about three seconds, and then it just makes me cold, and I wish I had brought my sweater. A little moderation would be very nice, both in the weather and the AC. This is why I loved Oregon, in which the temperatures swing at most about 70 degrees all told, from the coldest to the warmest, and usually in a very gradual way.
The sweating, and the weather that causes it, is also a problem because I’m useless in hot weather: unable to move and barely able to think, my posture reminiscent of the chickens in the Gary Larson cartoon of the boneless chicken ranch. So how I am going to get anything done this summer, let alone pursue any serious critical thought, is beyond me. If I were wealthy, I could have the help of a pool, AC, and someone to bring me beverages of crushed ice and many fruits divinely combined, but I am, alas, anything but, and the only beverages I will get are the ones I retrieve from myself from my overcrammed, yet somehow empty of anything really nice, fridge.
I’ve been grateful for the evenings, when things have cooled off, though stymied a bit in my efforts to bring maximum cool air into the apartment by the mosquitoes who, the moment I open the (unscreened, sadly) patio door, launch themselves through it and proceed to subject my body, already miserable with sweat, to even more discomfort. In an effort to alleviate the bites, I’ve been rubbing salt on them, a remedy I picked up on the Internet, though doing so, while somewhat effective, also makes me feel a bit like a human margarita, then I just wish I had a margarita, then I wish…well, then I lose all energy for wishing and simply lie on the floor moaning and missing the delights of an Oregon May: often-cool, sometimes-wet, certainly always ready to torment one with the promise of a summer that won’t really come until late June, but definitely not humid, and delightfully mosquito-free.