Don’t @ Me: Summer is Bad

No, Seriously

Graphic Jo Franken

Unless you’ve been living under an extremely well climate-controlled rock, you’ve probably noticed the summer of 2018 has essentially been one giant heatwave, with temperatures in early to mid-July peaking at more than 30 C for days on end.

I’ve hated every second of it.

Now, before you write your angry tweets, hear me out. Despite everything, there’s a lot of good things that come with the summer. It’s perfect weather for the pool, or the beach, or even to relax on a terrace outside. But that’s the thing, it’s all well and good when you can enjoy the heat (and I use that term loosely). My problem lies with the rest of the time I’m subject to the sweltering sun.

Not to be unnecessarily gross, but even on what I consider a perfect summer day (light breeze, some amount of clouds to block out the sun’s horrible radiation), I’m a pretty big sweater. So you can imagine just how extraordinarily gross I get on the hottest days of the year. Nothing feels as self-esteem wrecking than having to bring an extra shirt to wear at work because the one you were already wearing is drenched in sweat.

I take public transit or walk wherever I need to go, so I’m subjected to the heat constantly when I’m out and about. To go to work, I have to walk ten minutes to the bus stop, where there is no shade, to wait for a bus that takes me to the outdoor bus terminal. If the first bus isn’t late, I have about 2 minutes to get to my connection, so I often have to run for the bus. After more walking in the sun, I finally get to work an overheated mess.

And to top all of that off, most of the time the buses don’t even have air conditioning.

That’s right. While both the Société de transport de Montréal and the Réseau de transport de Longueuil are slowly converting to newer, more eco-friendly buses equipped with modern conveniences like air conditioning, the vast majority of units in both fleets still offer no climate control options in the summer. Besides cracking open windows, of course, which brings in more hot air, making them about as effective as a used car from 2004.

Worse still, the extreme heat we’ve been getting this summer poses some very real health risks for those that work outside or don’t have a place to stay cool. During the heatwave that struck much of the world in early July, more than 70 people died directly because of the heatwave in Quebec alone. As someone who has worked outside in the summers, and still is, it’s scary to think that your body could just give in to the heat if the necessary precautions haven’t been taken.

And it’s just going to get worse in the future. Thanks to climate change, temperatures are only getting more extreme; while there were heatwaves before, they were nothing like what’s happening now. So when you’re out sweating like a hog, remember all of the oil magnates swimming in their Scrooge McDuck pools of money. I know I will.

To conclude, give me hoodie and jeans weather, or give me death.