A Week in Slightly Over-temperate Hell
I know you were all worried about me but it's okay, I'm still here
Readers, I’m officially a Survivor.
No, sadly I don’t mean the beloved game show that’s restarting tonight. This isn’t an ad, though it feels like I should get paid for mentioning it? U up, CBS? I’m sure we can work this out, baby. Just a little cash for your loyal pal Rick.
And no, I’m not referring to one of my many previously documented medical issues or a car accident or something like that. No, it has been a much more dangerous week here in the homestead (my cramped little apartment). Full of trials and tribulations, the likes of which would give even a hero like Indiana Jones pause.
I have survived a week without air conditioning.
*shock* *gasp *awe* *faint*
I know, I know. Enough to work any southern belle into a tizzy. It may not seem humanly possible, but I have done it. A week in the Florida summer with nary a frigid blast of air in sight. A scale of suffering I struggle to find a parallel for in all of human history. Also, I didn’t try or think about finding one for a single second, and I encourage you not to either. (Let’s just support my inner narcissist and pretend for a moment here).
As the timeless Lil Jon & The East Side Boyz sang, “The sweat drop down my balls.” Unfortunately, the rest of the lyrics involving “bitches crawling” to me did not materialize. Like usual, these big Hollywood songs like to mislead with a heightened version of reality. Every day I opened my door expecting to see the prophecy come true. Every evening, as the sun set, my aforementioned bits (not to mention the rest of me) were left looking roughly like this:
This state of affairs was only made worse by my loneliness in confronting it. In Florida, this kind of suffering is expected post-hurricane. When the power is out and nobody has air conditioning, it’s a communal experience that lessens our own individual pain. It’s wholly different to stroll through my complex and see hundreds of working AC units. Fans spinning, mocking me with their continual whirring noise. Watching my neighbors return to their little hovels, smug as they lorded their comfort over me.
Is it even possible to have a more miserable first-world problem? I tried to look up Power Rankings for the various issues and couldn’t find anything. Prime examples include:
Having a cold/stuffy nose/allergies
Dealing with long hold times for customer service
The server putting WAY TOO MUCH ICE in your drink (god I hate this)
Forgetting your absolutely essential Chap Stick at home (part of me dies)
Having to wait for assistance in the self-checkout lane when it breaks
Being hungry, having food, but not wanting any of it so you have to order takeout
How do we even begin ranking these? The line between the different issues is pretty thin. What’s worse: no AC in Florida summer or no internet connection at the annual family getaway? After my harrowing experience, I’m going with the AC butttt if I’d spent the last week on family vacation with no mental escape, my answer could be extremely different.
The point is: Hardship is in the eye of the beholder. Probably the most difficult first-world problem is the one you’re actively going through. That extends to the more serious problems as well. We’re all the center of our own lives. And we’re all going through some shit, good and bad, small or large. There’s a great quote from Friedrich Nietzsche regarding the concept of Amor Fati, a love of fate, that I think is relevant here.
Amor Fati - Not merely to bear what's necessary, but to love it.
It’s important to remember, much as my air conditioning did eventually get fixed, that we can endure the issues that come our way. That’s pretty much what being a human is. Hell, I hear that people lived in Florida for thousands of years before this without central air. I don’t know how the hell they managed, but manage they did. Mad props to those folks, I bet it sucked a ton. I’m sure glad I don’t have to bear that particular burden.
Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’ve just stubbed my toe and I’m trying really hard to learn how to love it and I think I’m just going to have this be my theme song for whenever I’m struggling like a short-haired modern societal Karen:
Guess what? I write funny things like this one each week. Sometimes they’re even funnier than this one was. You can get more of them by putting in your email below:
3 Funny Things
1 - Larry David as Offensive Coordinator
Gotta respect the confidence to LD’s game. Honestly, would take him or just about anyone else over the offense the Steelers are currently putting out on the field. At the very least, the post-game press conferences would be 100% worth it, win or lose.
2 - Organize Much?
I think I’m going to start doing this when I go visit people’s houses. Really figure out who among my friends is a clean person and who is just putting on a good presentation. I mean, I already have a fairly good idea, just need to confirm it.
3 - Roman Empire Skit
If you’re out of the loop, the current social media zeitgeist has all the ladies asking their boyfriends how often they ponder the Roman Empire. The answer is, “a hell of a lot more than anyone ever suspected.” And for good reason: the Roman Empire was pretty damn awesome. So this is a fun little skit mocking that. Lost in the current madness is, of course, the male affinity for Greek culture as well as the life and times of Genghis Khan and the Mongolian Empire, but I don’t think the females in our lives are prepared to handle that information at this point in time.
Rarely in life do you get a chance for a do-over. This is one of those moments. You scrolled past the sign-up prompt above BUT NOW you have the chance to correct that mistake. Go ahead, give it a shot: