- Dear Abby
- Games & Puzzles
- Events & Exhibits
- Food & Drink
- Arts & Music
- Movies & TV
So, here we are, on day 47 of the worst heat wave since the days of the dinosaurs – or so it seems – and health authorities continue to treat people like imbeciles.
Following is an actual excerpt from an advisory on preventing heat-related illness issued by the Centers for Disease Control, regarded as one of the nation’s leading authorities on all things medical:
– Drink more fluids.
– Take a cool shower or bath.
The estimable American Red Cross makes this suggestion:
"If you do not have air conditioning, choose places you could go to for relief from the heat during the warmest part of the day (schools, libraries, theaters, malls)."
And the National Weather Service warns:
– Slow down. Reduce, eliminate or reschedule strenuous activities until the coolest time of the day.
– Dress for summer. Wear lightweight, light-colored clothing.
– Don't get too much sun.
Gee, I don’t know about you, but I always emulate mad dogs and Englishmen by going out in the midday sun. I also found its best to wear a wool sweater, overcoat, hat and mittens when running in excessively hot weather, and avoid consuming any liquids.
Conversely, in late January when snow flies, winds howl and temperatures plummet, these same institutions warn about the perils of hypothermia and frostbite by urging anyone venturing outdoors to dress in layers, stay dry and avoid prolonged exposure to severe cold.
With this in mind, I hereby offer similarly useful tips for dealing with a plethora of health- and weather-related situations those of us who venture into the great outdoors occasionally experience.
– Don’t seek refuge during a lightning storm by climbing a flagpole.
– When encountering a hornet’s nest it’s best not to whack it with a stick.
– Never try to tease a grizzly bear by playfully running off with one of its cubs.
– To avoid unforeseen complications most rock climbers opt to tie off the top of the rope before belaying.
– Don’t assess avalanche risk by jumping up and down on a snow shelf.
– Stop eating freshly picked mushrooms immediately at the onset of projectile vomiting.
– One way of determining if snakebite was from a potentially lethal copperhead or from a harmless milk snake is excruciating, throbbing pain in the vicinity of the bite.
– The efficacy of repeated cursing as an insect repellant has not been adequately proven.
– Never accept an invitation to hunt quail with Dick Cheney.
– A startled skunk that spins around and lifts its tail in your direction is trying to tell you something.
Anyway, I trust the persistently oppressive heat and humidity aren’t deterring fellow adventurers from enjoying the great outdoors.
Now if you’ll excuse me, it’s time to don my expedition parka and insulated climbing pants before heading on for a midday hike.
This week’s cold snap has spread a shimmering, silken coating over ponds and lakes throughout the region, creating some of the best conditions for skating in years, so you must get out now and enjoy it because who knows...
First of all, it’s way too soon to start whining about the cold. Let’s all agree that by March, if we’re still getting hammered by ferocious winds, driving snow and frigid temps, then a little complaining might be in...
The problem with New Year’s resolutions is that people, even — make that especially — hard-core adventurers/endurance athletes tend to set the bar way too high: bike across the country, qualify for the Hawaii...
When those uninitiated in the longstanding New Year’s Day tradition of running from Mystic to Fishers Island Sound and leaping into the icy water ask, "How can you stand it? Doesn’t it hurt?" we stoic veterans...
While kayaking the 341-mile Erie Canal from Buffalo to Albany a few years ago I spotted another paddler a mile or so away headed in my direction. Having encountered only one or two other kayaks nearly a week into what turned out to be an...
Isn’t life great?! Gas is so cheap now I can get rid of my puny, poky, fuel-efficient econobox and get behind the wheel of an auto with plenty of ponies under the hood that any American would be proud to drive, just like the good...
After my overwhelming victory last year in a rake vs. leafblower contest I hoped I’d heard the last of those infernal, noisy, polluting contraptions — but while out for a run the other day, savoring the fall foliage, a familiar whine as...