If there was a sun god, I imagine the last month would have proven he was a bit of a prick.
The problem isn't July's heat. Hundred degree days are par for the course when you live in the south--and yes, Oklahoma is southern even if it isn't "The South" as some of my Confederate-rooted friends like to remind me. I spent some time earlier this week in Chicago and I can assure you that the upper 70's highs make it clear what the difference between north and south is.
Anyway, the problem here at home isn't July's heat. It's been the abnormally high June heat here that has created an infernoesque cumulative effect on the mind and body. How could my birthday month be such a bastard? Nevertheless, when you're given sun-scarred lemons, you've gotta make some scalding hot lemonade, right? As of late, that's involved traveling. Which I already do a lot for work, yes. But in the last week, I was given the opportunity to schedule creatively and America did not disappoint. I did this in Austin. This in Memphis. And capped it off with this in Chicago. Mere days from July 4th and I'm reminded why I'm so hot for this country of ours.
So what will I do for an encore? Why, I'll be visiting America's greatest territory/not-state/un-state. Yes friends, you guessed it. And even if you didn't, the answer is Puerto Rico. Time to explore my paternal roots so very thoroughly via the beach/rum/rum/beachy rum experience of the official island paradise of this blog. I'm leaving in a couple weeks and have plans that include almost no plans whatsoever. My brain needs to defrag for a a bit. I plan to rest, ponder, swim in the ocean, meditate and pray. All in 85 degree weather with swim trunks as my primary clothing and the coastline as my refuge.
Either way, the heat is both a blessing and a curse due to the cumulative effect on all aspects of our being. And while it slows us down to a crawl, maybe that's a good thing. Are any of us really complaining that we're not moving fast enough in day to day life as it is? The only unfortunate thing to slow down a bit of late is production from this blog. But there has been so much good strong music released of late helping me to cope with the ice cream genocide outdoors that I haven't often known where to start in terms of birthing playlists. But alas, I always and usually often sometimes come through when I'm needed most and today is no exception.
Lots of new mixed with a few recent rediscoveries. If I may highlight a selection or two:
1. Pete and the Pirates: The best British rock band going these days that no one ever talks about.
2. Ty Segall: People disappointed that none of John Lennon's vocal talent really rubbed off on his kids will enjoy this rocker. The diversity of his rock arsenal and pop sensibilities grows with each release.
3. The Postelles: Stumbled across this band in the past week and the tunes are infectious with pop pleasure. A sunnier version of The Strokes/non post-punk American version of The Futureheads and certainly proving to be a summer staple for me.
Anyway, this week's playlist has been posted on 8tracks for 3 hours and already has 15 plays and 3 "Likes" which essentially translates in to Michael Jackson's Thriller in terms of popularity. So go ahead and embrace the awesome tunes, fire up the grills, and enjoy America no matter where you may be or even if you're not American. There's always a reason to party. Just don't melt.