July 10, 2006

…avoid Phoenix in July. The monsoons with their humidity have departed, thankfully (you haven’t lived until you try and play golf in 108-degree temps with 60% humidity and a constant 30-mph wind; it’s like playing in a convection oven!), leaving us high and dry with some generic, intense in-your-face summer desert heat. I think of days like these as a New England January cold-snap in reverse – rather than groove your way from one heated environment to another and avoid being outside as much as possible, here you do the same, except it’s from one AC-cooled environment to another.

Say, looking for some “cool” facts about summer life in the Valley of the Sun? A basic primer for outsiders can be found here.

Ten things not to do when the weather turns this hot:

1) Go barefoot on anything other than green grass.
2) Casually lean against your car, especially if it’s a dark shade.
3) Leave a ceramic or metal coffee cup on your dashboard.
4) Attempt anything athletic between 10 AM and 7 PM.
5) Make hot soup.
6) Drive anywhere without a container of water.
7) Ditto sunglasses.
8) Bring a cold drink outside and expect it to remain that way beyond 5 minutes.
9) Touch metal anywhere, in any form, at any time.
10) Spread peanut butter over your body and lay down on any green grass. If the sun don’t kill ya, the ants will.

If there were an 11th reason, it would be to avoid trying to cross the desert and illegally immigrate here. It’s this time of year when you unfortunately start to read newspaper articles like this and like this.

And a 12th might be not to walk or bike outside, period. After all, you might get shot.

There is one way to beat the heat, however – if you don’t mind watching bad baseball. And that is to attend a Arizona Diamondbacks game at Chase (formerly Bank One) Ballpark. How do they do it? Jeff Summers (no pun intended) of NowHitting.com explains:

With temperatures during the summer reaching 120 degrees, baseball in Phoenix, Arizona could become unbearable if played outside. For this reason, [Chase] Ballpark was created with a retractable roof. The roof can be opened and closed in less than 5 minutes. During the months of April, May, and October; most games are played with the roof open. The opening and closing of the roof is a show by itself. The Arizona Diamondbacks had music composed to choreograph the parting of the roof. On days when the weather permits, the roof will open approximately 30 minutes before game time. The roof will typically close 10 minutes after the game’s conclusion. If this is your first visit to [Chase] Ballpark, this experience is a must. When the roof is closed, the stadium is air-conditioned. The temperature inside is maintained at 77 degrees. If you have seats directly in line with the air conditioning ducts, it can be quite cool or even cold. On those occasions where a day game is played with the roof open, the third-base side will usually be in the shade while the first-base stands will be in the sun for nearly all of the game. Those in the pool will be in the sun for the entire game.

Regardless of the brand of ball you often see played by the hometown nine (who have fallen on hard times since their World Series championship in 2001), it is a fabulous place to watch a ballgame.

Here in the Phoenix area natural forms of water are non-existent, so what city planners have done is to create artificial waterways linked by a canal system. One of these is Tempe Town Lake, which attempts to make this area look like some half-a$$ed oasis in the desert. Of course, trying to maintain something unnnatural in natural surroundings poses its own set of challenges, but that won’t stop city planners from making the most out of this ambitious project which (I will admit) is a very attractive way to turn undeveloped desert land into a hot spot for development, regardless of God’s original intent. But that never stopped the march of progress before, so why should it now?

And, speaking of being a “hot spot”, did you know Arizona is a hot spot for UFOs? Well, it is, and you can read about it here.

Filed in: Uncategorized by The Great White Shank at 14:44 | Comments (2)
  1. heh. Come to Boston, OK don’t go to Boston it sucks…come to Cow Hampshire where the temps have been hovering right around 100 degrees this week.
    Hazy hot & Humid…so New Enlgand summers go.

    At least we get rain up here too. 🙂

    Comment by Raven — July 14, 2006 @ 5:48 pm

  2. Yes, I’ll be coming to Boston (not going through any tunnels, BTW, and me and my Goodboys pals will be in Southern NH playing some golf next weekend. Where do ya live, Raven?

    Comment by The Great White Shank — July 15, 2006 @ 11:34 am

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