The Sound of One Fan Clapping

5-27-2013 1_05_01 PM002

I don’t know about where you live, but where I live, here in Oregon, the day is building up to be a scorcher. They’re forecasting 98 degrees. That’s only two degrees from a hundred, people!

And it’s humid so it’s not like an Arizona 98, where you still might want to pull on a sweater in the morning. We lived in North Carolina for several years and I vividly remember the first summer there, and the first genuinely hot day: walking outside the air-conditioned house was like being violently assaulted by a heavy, wet blanket of rolling heat that wrapped you up and squeezed you like a boa constrictor–it literally took your breath away and you melted into a puddle right there where you stood. Visitors are regularly being scooped into buckets by the locals and hauled to the next air-conditioned place. I seent it happen.

Also, it was the thirteenth year of the cicada. Cicadas are insects that burrow into the ground as nymphs and live there for a specific number of years, depending on the genus (in this case, Magicicada), until they emerge as locust-like critters to shed their skins and swarm the nearest available tree. It being the Thirteenth Year, this meant that every treetop shook with the rattle of a million-billion tiny maracas, sizzling the air with sound just as our skin (and insides) sizzled in the sun. Imagine a massive, region-sized pressure cooker that only got louder as it got hotter. You couldn’t hear yourself think while you were boiling to death.


The green part with eyes is what ends up at the tops of trees, rattling its little ‘tymbals’ at us.

The brown part is what you see here, in piles, where they can come into contact with unsuspecting, innocent bare feet going about their own business.

The brown crunchy part is what you see here, in piles, where it can come into contact with unsuspecting, innocent bare feet going about their own business.

It’s just as humid here–I looked it up once, and we have exactly the same amount of moisture in the air!–but it feels different. Or, at least it used to. Yesterday, when I walked out of the cool store and into the bright sunshine, I had to look around to see if I was in the right state. I smelled salmon instead of livermush, and didn’t hear even one cicada, so I figured it was still Oregon, but I’m telling you. Lawd.

What with all this climate change going on, affecting every area of the world, I wonder if humanity will end up melting into one giant puddle of goo that god will have to scoop up and carry in a bucket to the next place?


Stay cool.

Love. xo



Filed under Beloveds, Folderol

4 responses to “The Sound of One Fan Clapping

  1. It’s 17C here, or so my phone tells me. In your strange odd temperature measuring methods that’s be 62.6F, or so google tells me.
    I don’t think I’d be able to cope with 98/36. That’s just too hot!

    • What is this ridiculousness?? 62.6 degrees (F) on the first day of JULY? That’s a lazy-ass spring temperature and should be rising to the occasion! Honestly. :) Actually, that’s about our usual temperature here; there’s a reason one of our state slogans is : “Oregonians don’t tan, they rust.” So this is unusual and some of us are having trouble coping! And others of us, like Torie, are out at the river with their boyfriend, baking and gamboling in the sun. Some of us is obviously crazy.

  2. Frokes

    My brain is half fried( picture bucket of grey mush … not from the heat just the busy-ness of these days. I’ve actually rested today- i think it’s made it worse!) I sympathize with you… and won’t rub your face in our coolness. I remember heat and humidity! It happens here too sometimes, just not our turn right now.
    I loved reading your post! so glad I had the chance to pop in! That cicada is quite beautiful in its cool summer outfit.
    Now I could drivel on but I think I will pour my bucket of mash onto my pillow and hope it congeals by morning!
    Love to you my dear friend!
    And happy 4th.

    • Yes, I imagine the difference is even greater for you, having moved from NC to Guelph! Thankfully, this Oregon morning is good and cool, even a little gray-skied–not a surprise for the 4th, as most of the time it even rains on this day. It’s gotten to be something of a joke around here. :)

      Happy belated Canada Day! Love to you, too~ xo

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