Edgy Mama: Is it just me?

Are you hot, or is it just me?

I’m so frickin’ sweaty and uncomfortable. All the time. Are you?

If you’re female and more than 38 years old, you probably know exactly what I’m talking about.

I’ve been sweating pretty much nonstop since the day I first got preggers. But it’s getting worse. It’s not just the damn external heat, although that’s bad right now. After all, this June and July have been the some of the hottest Junes and Julys in recorded history (actually, July isn’t over yet, so the data’s still pending, but I’d bet my swamp-butt panties on it).

Yes, we’re having heat waves and 90-something-degree weather in Asheville. I know those of you down in South Carolina and Georgia must be dripping like ice cream in a toaster oven.

At least you’ve probably got air conditioning. Many folks here in the mountains don’t because, well, it usually doesn’t get that hot up here. Of course, burning coal to power all the a/c is part of the whole climate-change problem, but still, I’m jealous.

The heat makes me as irritable as a duck stuck in a pâté pen. I feel claustrophobic and chubby, and I’ve got heat rash on the inside of my thighs from waddling around while runnels of salt water irrigate my skin.

And no, it’s not just the external heat; it’s that internal combustion engine that my unstable female hormones attempt to control. You’d think someone could have built us a better engine.

Yes, I’m perimenopausal and I’m melting here. (Why don’t the docs just say premenopausal and use a prefix we all understand? Damn doctors!) Plus I look like, well, a feisty middle-aged woman who can’t be bothered to blow-dry her hair or put on makeup, because both of those make me even hotter. Nothing’s sexier than a woman wiping her glistening brow and coming away with a bronzer-coated palm, right? Glistening, my heinie.

And while it’s worse now than it used to be, being hot seems to be a lifelong female boulder we carry. Even my pre-adolescent daughter is hot all the time. In fact, her second favorite sentence (after “Leave me alone”) is “Are you hot, or is it just me?” I don’t even want to think about what her hormones are up to right now.

Example: The other day, we drove by the dude who dresses up in a chicken suit and dances on the side of the road in front of Picnics restaurant. The management seems to believe that seeing a tall guy wearing a chicken suit will make motorists crave actual chicken, slam on their brakes and swerve into the parking lot for a snack. But, hey, I’m clearly no marketing genius. The ploy seems to work.

“Wave at the chicken guy,” I say to the kids as we drive past fast, way too fast to even attempt a snack break without getting rear-ended on the racetrack otherwise known as Merrimon Avenue.

“He must be burning up,” says my girl. I can tell by her tone that she truly feels for the chicken guy.
“Yeah, he must be really hot,” I reply.

“I’m so glad I don’t have to wear a chicken costume,” she says.
“Me, too,” I say.

I think, oh my God, am I glad.

The boy, who came down from his room wearing a long-sleeved turtleneck the day it was 94 degrees, has no comment.

Then I wonder, what if? What if my job consisted of dancing around on super-heated asphalt in the blazing sun wearing a chicken suit? What if I had no other choice?

The result, I’m sure, would be death from hormone-induced heatstroke. Or I’d just go frickin’ crazy and start throwing chicken legs at passing vehicles.
Chicken guy, are you hot? Or is it just me?

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9 thoughts on “Edgy Mama: Is it just me?

  1. Suzanne Jones

    Have no worries, my dear. Once you turn 60 you’ll be cold all the time. You can bet your penguin-butt panties on it.

    Your MIL

  2. Summer

    “The heat makes me as irritable as a duck stuck in a pâté pen.”

    I love that line. That said, this weather’s lovely, but even I’m having to crank the a/c from time to time. *sigh*

    I’m ready for FALL already.

  3. Rio

    I have never had the hot thing, except for some night sweats in recent months. I had a March baby and absolutely froze all winter because I was too big to get enough clothing around me. Weird. I have had plenty of other symptoms – extreme irritability, unbelievable exhaustion, acne worse than when I was a teenager, and lots of cramping (I’ll leave out the other symptoms – tmi).
    So much fun being female.
    But I am glad to hear Chicken guy is still out there. My kids used to wave at him when they were little too!

  4. Mama

    It’s heredity ! All the women in our family are hot! (pun intended)

  5. Lila (The Artist Formerly Known as Linda Wells)

    I want whatever Suzanne’s having. I turn 61 in August and although I am over the flashes, I am still waiting for the cool down. The other day an 83-year-old woman came to visit me in long sleeves. That’s what I’m waiting for, if I last that long.

  6. Well, I have to be honest with you darlin’….

    Chicken suit or not, I’m ALWAYS Hot!

    The truth is, I am a musician and painter who lives on Merrimon and who has worked at PICNICS for years because I genuinely love the food–and the pie!–and I have found that this gig, including The Chicken Suit, is ideal for pursuing my muse.

    So no one should ever pity me. In fact, as The Chicken I have a unique perspective on what kind of community we actually have here in Asheville. You’d be surprised how much you learn about the human condition when you’re dancing in 95 degree weather in a fur coat, attempting to persuade people to notice your business/place where you earn your living so you can chase True North with every roasting ember of your being….

  7. MO Daddy

    If you are seeking sympathy, you won’t find it here — South Central Texas. After enduring 5 lonnnnnng years in this feces hole, thoughts of returning to “hot and sweaty” Asheville are cool, calm comfort. Consider yourselves lucky.

  8. Old Horsetail Snake

    What a difference 3,000 miles make. Here in Oregon we nearly set a record for most days below average high temperature in July. I feel sorry for you.

  9. Jason,
    I love that you’re not just a guy in a chicken suit, but a philosophical guy in a chicken suit. I’d love, some time, to hear more about what you’ve learned about people and our fair town while doing your thang on the main drag.

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