It’s not actually raining outside in any capacity, men or otherwise, but it isn’t sunny anymore so that song popped into my head. For the last week or two, England has been going through a ‘heatwave’. England is a weird place for weather, and I am not talking dramatic; I am talking mild. There is no better word for our weather. Our summers are 90% cloud and 10% half-hearted sunshine. When us Brits talk about the weather, I am sure the rest of the world just scoffs and stops paying attention. Our heatwaves are a mild summer’s day for some countries and our ‘masses’ of snow are only about 6 inches at most. The reason we over-react to any weather that is not cloud cover, mild sunshine or rain is because we are just not equipped to deal with anything but those three. When it is hot like it has been for the last few weeks, roads start to melt, rails buckle and people just give up, spontaneously dropping dead because IT MUST BE THE END OF THE WORLD!
I think our mild weather is the reason British people get such a thrill out of talking about the weather and the first day of sunshine in the year (even if it is mid-February) suddenly sees people sauntering about in shorts despite the fact you can visibly see them shivering. You think about asking them, “Wouldn’t you rather wear a few more layers?” But you just know you would be met with, “Nah, we have to make the most of the sunshine. Won’t be getting too many more days like this.” I think these people are clearly nutters and I normally stare for a moment and wonder when hypothermia and natural selection will kick in.
The BBC had an article this week titled: 10 ways the UK is ill-prepared for a heatwave. I am going to take a moment to comment on this. Do you know why we are not prepared for a heatwave? BECAUSE WE DON’T LIVE IN A HOT COUNTRY. Okay? Did I clear that up for everybody. I am going to point to number 2 on their list: No air con. Of course we don’t have bloomin’ air con. 90% of the year it would be unnecessary and you just know people would use it even when it was unnecessary just to justify the expense. “Hey, Jerry, isn’t it a bit chilly to have your air con on?” “No, I spent £750 on this chillinator 5000, I need to get my pennies worth out of it.” Okay, I don’t think people are actually this bad, but most households are not going to spend an unnecessary amount on air conditioning when it is largely pointless for most of the year.
I have a few questions about this article too. The principle of metal expanding when hot is one of basic science, but if all rails expand when it gets hot, why is it only the UK that is having these massive problems? Our roads haven’t been handling well either. It does make me wonder why we don’t have better roads. Before the article, I had never heard of a ‘cooling centre’.
The US has been using ad hoc “cooling centres” to cope with heatwaves for some time.
Okay… Good for the US. I don’t really understand why this makes the UK unable to cope with a heatwave. I think a lot of the things on the list are a little… How to word this… Err… I don’t know where I was going with that one. The reason we don’t have a lot of things on the list is because of our normal British summers. Who wants to sit outside when it is cold and drizzling? That is why there is a lack of outdoor seating. No siesta? I don’t see that as much of a problem either. It is cool in the part of the office I am in. If we had a siesta, I would have to walk home in that time only to try to find more shade in a different building. Plus, my flat is hotter than the office because it is tiny and doesn’t get a breeze. Silly idea.
I am going to stop moaning about the weather now because I am going to go spend more money on Steam in an effort to compulsively collect badges and add to the growing list of games I haven’t played. Since the Steam sale has fallen just before payday and at the end of the payroll month, my saving for Europe is going to have to start next month… It just has to. I am going to end with some pictures and a video about the weather (and how not to keep cool) because I can.