A Day at the Races
Gale-Force Winds


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October 10, 1999

Well, it's mid-October, as good a time as any I suppose, for summer to finally arrive in Southern California. It's been hot here. Sticky, sweaty, relentlessly, hot here.

I should have seen it coming.

Yesterday was my company's summer event. Our summer event has taken many faces. We had a couple of your standard-issue picnics. Then, a couple of times we went to the Hollywood Bowl. (In the cheap seats, way up up up up up in the back. And for a girl who's used to sitting in a box three rows from the stage, this is a major hardship.) Then there was Knott's Berry Farm, Catalina, a couple more park events, and then yesterday's event: a day of racing at Santa Anita.

There are two things that tie all these events together: the fact that it's sponsored by my company, so the same people I see every single day of the work week are invading my time off, and the fact that no matter what month the summer event is scheduled for, from May to October, it is always the Hottest. Day. Of. The. Year.

It's been delightfully mid-70's, low 80's around here for most of the summer. A few of weeks of hot weather. One in July, one in August, and one in early September, but since October is here you'd figure we're out of the woods, and into fall. I have this to say about that: HA!

The picnic was actually a hoot. What's to be bad about a day at the races. It would have been perfect if you couldn't fry an egg on the tarmac, but besides that: gambling, alcohol, and wide open spaces so I didn't actually have to spend any time with my coworkers. Pretty darned delightful.

I love the horse races. I used to go with my stepmother and her friend Doris when I was a kid: Hollywood Park, Santa Anita, or Del Mar. Doris used to call me Miss Luckybritches. I have a knack with those ponies. I don't think I've ever lost money. I left $60 ahead. OK, not enough to quit my job but money in is always better than money out.

But it was really fucking hot. I felt totally wilted by the time we left after the 8th race.

Here's the thing. I bought this fan a couple of months ago. For our bedroom. We had a fan. One of those standing oscillating jobs. I've had it for who knows how long. I like to have the fan on in my bedroom. I like the air to be moving. I like it cool. I cannot sleep if I'm even a little bit warm. My preference is that the room is chilly so I can be snugly warm under the covers. This is especially important since Chuck generates about 3000 Btu in his sleep. Anyway, the old fan broke. Suki knocked it over and the fan part broke off the base so it no longer oscillated and posed a significant electrical fire hazard.

So, the fan has been in the box waiting for next summer since it seemed fall had arrived. Then we get this hot spell. So, Friday night I set up my new fan. It's called a Cool Breeze.

Conjures up images of cool winds, soft breezes. Doesn't it? Well, I have this to say about that: HA.

It might more appropriately be called Gale Force Winds. Man does this fan pack a punch. I put it on low and got plastered to the opposite wall and had to call Chuck to turn off the electricity. "Don't come in the room honey, it'll suck you in too!"

Every single item that was not nailed down is now plastered to the wall.

Until next time. . .