Comfortable with discomfort

The universe is not required to be in perfect harmony with human ambition.
~Carl Sagan

It’s winter in Texas. Which sometimes means I’m running around in shorts, but not always. Right now the thermostat is reading about 62 Fahrenheit, set to kick the heater on at 60. If the thermostat is to believed, anyway. I think that it lies sometimes, but I digress. I’m wearing a coat and the dog I’m babysitting is wearing his sweater. I slept under a quilt. The cats snuggle as only cats can.

In the summer, it’ll probably be close to 80 in here, with brief periods of 75 at night. Roommate has a floor fan, I just kick the overhead fan up another notch and deal.

Uncomfortable? Most people would scream a resounding yes. But our electricity bill is minimal. We spend half as much as other people do in the summer. But when it’s 107 outside and you walk in, it doesn’t matter if it’s 80 or 60, it still feels good. And stepping back outside isn’t so much of a jump. I still laugh at people who come into my restaurant bitching about the weather. “It’s so hot!” Yea, it’s fucking hot. It’s also FUCKING TEXAS. I live here because it’s hot and the winters are mild. If this planet was built for the comfort of modern man it wouldn’t have this climate, or it would just come with climate control. It wasn’t and it doesn’t. Summers in the northern hemisphere are hot and winters are cold. Acclimate. If you don’t like it, move somewhere with a Mediterranean climate.

My roommate doesn’t have a car. I do, but I try to avoid using it as much as possible. We walk to the grocery store, regardless of hour, season, or weather. Driving the three blocks to the damn store is just stupid. Even on my way back from work it’s often easier to just drive home, park, and walk than it is to fight for a parking spot. If I need to run an errand, I’ll walk or bike unless I have some sort of time issue going on. If I have to drive, I save the errand and do it before or after work, when I’m in the car anyway. Sure, biking across town to go to the bead store can be awfully cold and wet. But gas is expensive and I need the exercise.

I’m often a chauffeur for the carless. If you don’t have a car and need a ride, I’m your bitch. I have a car, and if by giving you a ride now and then can keep you from owning a car, let me introduce you to the Roach, your new-to-you occasional method of transportation for unwalkable/bikable/busable distances. If you pay for my gas I will drive your ass (and the rest of you) to Austin, Dallas, or fucking Arizona if I can. I consider it my duty as a car-owned citizen.

Fuck the lap of luxury. I’ll take my showers a little too cold for comfort (in the summer, anyway), the apartment always a little off from “perfect,” and long walks through immense heat and humidity. It’s part of life. It’s not perfect and isn’t supposed to be. If it was, it’d be boring.

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3 Responses to “Comfortable with discomfort”

  1. littlehousesouthernprairie Says:

    we also keep the heat at 60 degrees in the winter — live in NC. it’s chilly and we wear sweatshirts in the house and curl up under blankets on the couch, but yeah, it’s winter. it’s not supposed to be 80 degrees. low heating bill, good for the earth.

  2. Texas heat? I’ll miss it if I ever leave.

  3. falnfenix Says:

    Baltimore resident here – our house gets no warmer than 65 in the winter and we don’t have central air, but we usually turn on the window boxes if the humidity gets to the point where we’re sweating while lying in bed. usually the ceiling fans do a heck of a job keeping the place cool.

    i can’t fathom walking to the store, though. do that in my neighborhood and you’ll get mugged.

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