Reprinted from my weekly column at the Platte County Landmark
As a writer, you are taught to look for new ways to say the same thing. You want to find colorful adjectives, similes and metaphors to paint word pictures for your readers. Today, readers, I’m going to explain what a terrible process this is.
It’s hot. That’s it. That’s really all I have to say. I can’t think of anything else because there is sweat running down the small of my back into a dark, dark place. It is hot, okay?
It’s to be expected. It is July in Kansas City. I guess that 45 days of rain we got earlier in the summer made me think that it somehow wouldn’t be swamp gutter hot four seconds after I walk out of my house – but I was again wrong.
There aren’t words to describe how uncontrollably hot it is when I get in my car after work. I’m beginning to think that the folks who created those sun shades for our windshields actually are trying to see if we’d notice that our car has turned into the inside of a microwave set to high.
It’s hot. That’s the only word. Stop trying to make up new words. Steamy. Stifling. Sweltering. Nothing makes me feel any better about the fact that I have liquids dripping off of my body at a rate of a gallon a minute.
And you can take that “feel like index” and put it where the sun won’t shine. What is a “Feels like index”? How is that helpful? The weather person tells me, “It’s going to be a hot one today. Highs in the mid-90’s, but the feels like index will make it feel like 104. Here’s Larry with the sports.”
How? Why? Why do we need to append an already bad thing with a worse thing? I don’t understand? You don’t see people saying, “well sir, your pizza is going to be 30 minutes late, but that will also make it feel 20 degrees cooler. Here’s Jim Bob with your check!”
How about we just have one word for things and that can be all inclusive. Hot means hot. Don’t touch that, it’s hot. See? That was easy, right? Weather people are infamous for this with their “wind chill” and “radar indicated threats.” How about you tell me to bring an umbrella or call me when I need to get into the basement – and stop lighting up all the sirens in the county for a gust of wind 30 miles away?
I move that we retire the “heat index” and replace it with the GSI – the Genital-Sticking Index. The description of this index is somewhat, um, graphic. So please cover your children’s eyes as you read the next sentence, but basically, the GSI is either a YES or a NO and computes the level of uncomfortably with the heat outside. Every morning, I’ll step outside and if there is adequate sticking to the inside of my thigh, it will be called a GSI ALERT day. If there isn’t, then you’re free to relax in the comfort of the weather outside. Think of all the time that’d be saved hearing about indexes and humidity.
This past week, there have been seven GSI ALERT days. So much so, that I am having difficulty walking. But that’s another problem for another time.
Let’s just cut through the crap, weather people. Stop making stuff up in the dog days of summer and just tell me that it’s hot.
Or maybe I should look into buying some Gold Bond powder and get a thesaurus.