You are sick of the heat. You are sick of feeling like you’ve been dipped in a tub of sweat and grime after 10 minutes of being outdoors. You are sick of everything that makes you warm. Clothes. Fire. Human touch.
You are officially broken up with Summer.
In an attempt to cool down, you’ve tried everything you remember from your childhood. You’ve flipped your sweat-soaked pillow more times than you can remember. You’ve clumsily jumped through your sprinkler while your neighbors watched, concerned, from their windows. You’ve put bags of peas on your forehead as you lay on the cold, tile floor in the basement.
And yet, you’re still too hot.
You try to think cool thoughts. Penguins, the arctic, the opening scenes from the 1993 X-Files episode, Ice. Mind over matter and all that. Think cold and you’ll be cold, right? You sit next to the AC vent, letting the forced air push the hair from your face and evaporate the sweat that has pooled in your eyebrows.
You waft your shirt over your stomach, hoping that the improved airflow will lower your internal temperature. You stare at the digital thermometer, questioning its accuracy. Your mind wanders to Spring, Fall, Winter; any time when the world isn’t trying to burn you to death.
You fill a large glass with water and add four blocky ice cubes until the contents almost overflows. You feel the relief penetrating your throat and chest as you take your first gulp. Before you realize, you’ve finished the glass of water. That was good. But you want more.
You pour another glass. Cranberry juice cocktail. The sweet and tangy concoction brings a smile to your lips, but your body cries for even more quench. Another glass. Chocolate milk. Bad idea. Refill. Unsweetened lemon-laced iced tea. Getting there, but still missing something.
The hiss as the cap comes off alone makes you feel cooler. The yellow glow of the beer in the glass is worth at least a degree or two. You take a sip. Hop bitterness, a hint of fruit. Cleverly balanced doughy malts.
9 out of 10.