Ten ways to beat the heat

Ugh. It’s hot.

I’ll try to remind myself this weekend about how much I dislike winter — enduring practically frozen eye balls from walks in the bitter cold, chopping hard-packed snow at the end of my driveway and spending weekends cooped up at home during a snowstorm when all I wanted to do was roam.

I need to remind myself of those days to get through the scorching heat and humidity these days.

I’m a fair weather Minnesotan. My made-to-order day would be somewhere between 68 and 72 degrees with a gentle breeze. This year, those days have been few and far between.

What does one do when it is so miserably hot outside that you can fry an egg on your driveway in less than a minute?

Well, here’s my Top 10 list:

10. Actually try frying an egg on the driveway to see how long it will take. Then, so as not to waste the protein, leave it there to feed some poor, hungry feral cat roaming my neighborhood.

9. Rent a stack of movies from the local video store. Might I suggest Cool Runnings, New in Town or Grumpy Old Men — all flicks that feature the snow and cold we in Minnesota are forced to live with for about half of the year.

8. Make an ice cream cake … or root beer floats.

7. Read a book. Straying from my “keeping cool” theme, I’ll suggest reading Laura Hillenbrand’s “Unbroken,” which tells the true story of a World War II bombardier who survived a plane crash into the Pacific Ocean, floated at sea for more than 40 days and was captured by the Japanese and held prisoner until the war ended in 1945. I finished my copy last weekend, and it was an amazing story.

6. Lay on the couch with the fan blowing cool air from the air conditioner vents while multi-tasking by watching movies or reading a book.

5. Drink lots of water … and other liquids in moderation.

4. Dig out the blender (mine hasn’t been used since I moved to Worthington nearly eight years ago) and make shaved ice.

3. Dress in your coolest clothes and take a drive to one of the many community festivals in the area this weekend.

2. While you’re in your car — with the air conditioner cranked up as high as it will go, obviously — steer in the direction of Luverne. I’ll be there Saturday afternoon to help judge the barbecued rib cook-off fundraiser for Habitat for Humanity, and I’m a little nervous about the so-called “spicy” ribs I’ve been told a couple of the chefs are grilling.  I might need some moral support!

1. Only because it is my No. 1 priority this weekend: Spend some quality time in my basement, cleaning up the remnants of Mother Nature’s deluge. I’m thankful for risers and Shop Vacs and the invention of the broom. I’m also thankful I live in southwest Minnesota. For all of the snow and cold, heat and humidity we love to complain about, I think we all know it could be worse.

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