Kage Baker loved heat. But she was nuts.
Whenever summer reaches the inhuman levels of heat – as it is presently doing in Los Angeles – it comes clear to me that Kage was insane. Even before the days when my metabolism short-circuited if the temperature got over 80 degrees, I wondered about it. I was so miserable in the heat, and she was so happy! Triple digit heat, and Kage’s solution was to put on a silk pajama top and pin her hair up. Even more frustratingly, it always worked for her!
I don’t think she even usually sweated. Not like me. I start deliquesing when it gets hot; which is an interesting phenomenon when observed in exotic salts, but grotesque in a human being. Kage just glowed like metal in a forge. I suspected she might, if it got hot enough, either dissolve into white-hot droplets or simply burst into flames: but it would never be, you know – sticky.
After a mild July and August, Los Angeles has begun its annual end-of-summer heat wave. The temperature is into the 90’s, and expected to stay that way for several days. I have changed into nocturnal mode, observing the heat and light from the safe side of the windows. I wander from fan to fan, clutching my spray bottle/fan combo, flinching like a vampire playing chicken with the daylight.
In fact, it’s too damned hot to write. My writing hat is sticking to my brow. I shall regale you all, Dear Readers, with my amusing adventures in Nuclear Medicine later on – there were some interesting moments – probably late tonight, when I can sit in the cool (er) darkness and write for a while without melting on the keyboard.
For now I’m just hitting my mark, in a heat-exhausted effort to maintain the bare vestiges of discipline. Most of you are probably in similar shape … go drink iced tea or cold beer; eat frozen grapes and get into the Magnum ice cream bars. Sit as close to your fans and A/C as you can, and try to stay cool.
I think Kage was maybe part dragon. Or something like a cactus dryad. Me, I’m more like a Jello salad …
That autumn heat use to annoy the heck out of me as a kid. Here was June, when you were free from school, fractions, and the Baltimore Catechism, it was cold and gloomy a and misty. Then, just as they march you back into school, the temperature would soar to ridiculous levels. At least in high school, we had that little polka dot of a pool for cooling off. With Miss Jasmine up top eyeballing candidates for basketball JV, it seems one could snatch some blessed coolth.
Next time the doctors check under your hood, ask them (if you already haven’t) if you have a wonky hypothalamus.
Mine misbehaves if it gets too hot, egging on the pituitary, which is its stooge, to throw me into a panic attack, or make me vomit. Sometimes both. Such fun, the hypothalamus!
No, my hypothalamas is just fine – my doctors checked it. My thyroid long ago joined the Dark Side, and my pancreas shut down just recently – all my other glands seem to be behaving normally. At least, for someone who has passed their warranty period.