Sunday, August 2, 2009

Hot Enough For Ya?

My reader asks how we're doing in the heat. These days are like them Santa Ana winds days in SoCal: "wife beating weather" a cop friend calls them. It's rare for the winds to blow for as many days in a row as this heat spell has lasted, but while the Santa Anas just make things miserable, dry and hot (when they are not fanning some wildfire upwind that is depositing day after day of ash on you), they don't bring in these swell thunderstorms.

Me likee thunderstorms. Munch 'n' Music at the park on Thursday got all thunderstormy, Friday night's Elks baseball game got briefly thunderstormy, and last night was dramatic as all get-out. But when the time lag between the flash and the sound dropped to, well, zero, I decided it was time to get our asses off the deck and come indoors.

The rains came sleeting down right then, too. And the power went out. Killing the window-mount new Frigidaire A/C unit we had picked up at Lowe's a couple days earlier. That little sucker is going to slam our electric bill, but when it's 99 degrees outside but 80 inside -- as measured by a thermometer located between the living room, where the unit is mounted, it's doing a right fine job.

Sitting in front of it, as we do when watching TV, it's downright frigid. Money well-spent, make the place quite tolerable.

But this heat doesn't carry a candle to the misery I'm feeling right now withdrawing from pain meds. I've been on opioids since May, at times quite heavy dosages, and have been tapering for the past couple weeks. The meds ran out 36 hours ago, and I was only taking one pill every 12 hours at that point anyway.

Even so, it's surprising how much pain the body manufactures when one's opioid receptors are no longer being plugged with exogenous narcotics.

I'll take heat over withdrawal symptoms, hands down, no questions. I'm not talking Trainspotters-grade symptoms here, but the next time I hear about someone who has managed to kick heroin -- like a niece of mine, brave girl -- I know I'll have a slight idea what they had to go through.

Lyle Lovett's performing at the Schwab tonight. I like his music. I bought the expensive tickets back when they were first on sale. I hope I feel good enough to see the show.

9 comments:

  1. "Me likee thunderstorms."

    Me likee thunderstorms too. They're actually one of the few weather phenomena of Central Oregon I like. But not EVERY DAMN NIGHT.

    It's too hot to be outside during the day, and then when evening comes and you'd like to have a couple of drinks and dinner on your patio ... Ka-BOOM!

    Jack, me thinkee you one those people who say he likee everything. You likee cold, you likee hot, you likee rain, you likee snow, you likee thunder and lightning, you likee plague of locusts. Only thing you don't likee is nice weather -- it too "boring," you say.

    Me thinkee you one very weird dude.

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  2. I believe that has already been established.

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  3. Speaking of drinks, me likee them too -- me likee them a lot. When are you gonna be off that vast array of meds you're taking so I can buy you a couple? You seem to be on more crap than Michael Jackson.

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  4. oh, Father.

    I wish we had some interesting weather here. It's just warm and humid here.

    I'm sorry to hear about the opiate withdrawals. That's just terrible :(

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  5. Thank you, dear daughter. The weather up here is in a cooling trend, and should be in the mid-70's by middle of week, quite a bit cooler than it was when you were here last month.

    @Blackdog: down to two antibiotics now, one orally, one iv. The good Herr Dr. J. Lutz, MD, said that one beer every so often would not likely damage my liver, and it might lift my spirits a bit. I tried a Red Strip the other night (a favorite of my son's) but wasn't impressed. Didn't feel that it was a good enough beer -- to my taste -- to risk my liver for.

    I gotta 'nother 23 days or so before we discontinue the antibiotics.

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  6. I'm a believer in the "use it or lose it" philosophy when it comes to the liver, Jack -- you gotta challenge it now and then to keep it in shape.

    Did you go to the Lyle Lovett concert? Did they continue it throughout that fierce thunderstorm? That could be really, really dangerous -- thousands of people out in a big open field with lightning striking all over the place. Folks get killed that way.

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  7. We did go to the concert. See today's post.

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  8. "Killing the window-mount new Frigidaire A/C unit we had picked up at Lowe's a couple days earlier. That little sucker is going to slam our electric bill"

    You betcha.

    Take a couple tips from a veteran Central Oregonian:

    1. You don't need air conditioning. 90-degree days here are rare. And even on the hottest days the temperature drops into the 50s (or lower) at night.

    2. Use window shades and/or blinds. Much of the heat entering your house during the day is radiant energy from the sun.

    3. Consider installing a white or light-colored metal, composition or tile roof.

    4. Put a ceiling fan over your bed. We got one for about $300 installed. Keeps you nice and cool at night and uses much less juice than an AC. (Quieter too.)

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  9. "1. You don't need air conditioning. 90-degree days here are rare. And even on the hottest days the temperature drops into the 50s (or lower) at night."

    Normally, you're right. But last week we did have some upper 60's, low 70's nights. The window-mounted AC unit is sitting atop two 4x4's to support its butt, and the window is otherwise plugged with cardboard. Thing's coming out as soon as things cool, and whether it gets pasted up again next year will be a function of the elements. Not even using it today, it's quite pleasant.

    I've had to be working up here on the second floor. The ground floor of the house is considerably cooler than up here, but this busted foot keeps me from going down, so I have to work up here in this oven (living room, bedrooms, kitchen, all up here). When it's 98 outside, and pushing 95 in the house, YOU may not need A/C but I sure do. Even with a big fan blowing directly on me, I found myself flagging.

    "2. Use window shades and/or blinds. Much of the heat entering your house during the day is radiant energy from the sun."

    Got 'em. Use 'em. Off-white with a reasonably good r-rating.

    "3. Consider installing a white or light-colored metal, composition or tile roof."

    A white roof makes plenty of sense to me.

    "4. Put a ceiling fan over your bed. We got one for about $300 installed. Keeps you nice and cool at night and uses much less juice than an AC. (Quieter too.)"

    Yep, we use a fan in the bedroom, too. Can't abide the look of ceiling fans -- most look like cheap escapees of some Olde Tyme Soda Shoppe -- but a small vertical fan does a fair job of moving the air.

    Also looking into a whole house fan to draw in cool evening/morning air and blow it out through the attic, pre-cooling the house for the whole day. Uses about 10% the power of an air-conditioning plant.

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