How to Fry Your Brains


It's  pretty simple. Live in Arizona in the summer...particularly the last few days. Triple digit heat is livable, but not over 112 degrees and up, that's not fit for any living creature except scorpions. Every year around October, a million people in this state undergo a collective memory loss. It only takes a week or two, and it's quite amazing in its effectiveness. By December, those days of summer (you know, the ones that the rest of the country celebrates with picnics, balmy green backyards full of trees and flowers, happy children playing outside, firefly-laden evenings, all the stuff Bradbury stories are made of) fade into the same dropbox. Arizonans seem to have no memory of blistered hands from steering wheels and seatbelt clasps, sunglasses fogged with sweat, constant showers and clothing changes, burned soles, never being more than two feet away from a bottle of water and electric bills the size of house payments. By December, they are nodding smugly at news stories of blizzards everywhere else and love to call people up while sitting outside sipping margaritas in the winter sunshine.

By June, it all comes rushing back, though, and since it's too hot to move yourself, let alone your household, another three months of hell is on the docket. It does sort of give you a sense of pride, though. You are a survivor, baby, you made it through the gates of hell and are now in weather paradise for 8-9 months or so.


Although I say this every year, next year I'm planning ahead. July and August will be the time to go North. Doesn't even matter where, just north, or go west until you reach the Pacific. Arizonans get in their cars in the summer and after the initial horror, drive until they can open the windows without getting sandblasted. After that, it's all good. Yep, that's the plan, unless I have that collective memory loss thing going on. I'm making notes this time.

Yours, from the seclusion of a darkened air-conditioned study, Raven