The Sledgehammer – Version 2.0

August 16, 2008

Welcome to the Dog Days of August – Now With Actual Dogs

Filed under: Dogs — Brian Lutz @ 9:53 pm

According to Wikipedia, The term “Dog Days” dates back to Ancient Greek times, and generally refers to the warmest period of the year, roughly between early July and the middle of August (which was generally believed to have been caused by Sirius, which at the time rose in the northern Hemisphere sky at roughly the same time as sunrise.)  The ancients seemed to ascribe a particular evil to this period of the year, with one account calling it a time “when the seas boiled, wine turned sour, dogs grew mad, and all creatures became languid, causing to man burning fevers, hysterics, and phrensies.”  These days, we seem to have a lot fewer wrathful gods around to cause trouble than there were in ancient times, so we generally don’t think of any particular time of year as being evil.  Even so, in modern usage the Dog Days of August (as the phrase is more commonly rendered these days) are still regarded as something of a time of laziness and inactivity.  And for some reason, I ended up with actual dogs this year. 

In case you somehow have managed to avoid noticing, it’s been freakin’ hot around here the past couple of days.  Temperatures have been regularly reaching the nineties for most of the week, and there’s been plenty of humidity to go around generally making it generally hot and sweaty around here.  Thanks to the modern miracles of air conditioning, this has been a bit more tolerable than usual this year (Back when I was driving my old beater Camry with no air conditioning, an unreliable fan and windows with broken roll-down mechanisms, this weather wasn’t all that much fun to drive in,) but when it’s this hot and this humid, it doesn’t take long for an unoccupied car to turn into an oven, which means that if you’re around town doing short errands you’re probably going to spend a lot less time in air-conditioned bliss than you’d like.  Then there’s the little issue of what you’re supposed to do when you’re not in the car.  Around here, air conditioning is something that’s not generally considered to be a necessity, so mosr homes don’t have it.  This means that the cooling in my apartment is provided primarily by a pair of fans which push air around with varying amounts of success.  Fortunately, my apartment also stays somewhat cooler than some places due to limited exposure to direct sunlight, even though it can still get uncomfortably warm, especially during the night.  Nothing I can’t deal with, but it can make it a bit tough to get to sleep on some nights.

Oh, and about the dog part:  Somehow my parents managed to miss the memo about going to Arizona in the middle of the Summer, and are currently down near Tucson visiting my grandmother.  Surprisingly enough, the weather down there isn’t much hotter right now than it is here, although that probably has something to do with the severe thunderstorm warnings going on down there right now.  That doesn’t help out much when it’s still expected to hit 95 tomorrow (when we should be cooling down to just 85 up here tomorrow, and the forecast is currently calling for rain and 70 by Wednesday.)  With my parents out of town, that means once again for the next week or so I’ll be taking care of Imola and Minardi again.  I’m pretty sure I won’t be dogblogging the whole thing again this time around (after all, there’s only so much you can write about a couple of dogs without starting to sound like a disturbing pet person) but I might sneak in a post or two.  So far, the Dog Days seem to have induced more lethargy than madness in the localcanine population, but hopefully the rest of the week won’r provide too much opportunity fot the latter…

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