Here in Texas, the Sun has turned into a morally bankrupt psychopath, and it wants to kill us and our families. All the cities around me are breaking records for 100-degree consecutive days. Wichita Falls is up to 52 days (previous record of 42), Tyler’s up to 47 days (previous record of 20 days), and Waco has 43 days (previous record of 42). The other day, I saw Diane Sawyer talking about the heat wave, and she described a heat dome—which sounds like an alien doomsday device—trapping a huge portion of the U.S. in a sort of pressure cooker. She then pointed to a diagram of the dome, and, sure enough, there was north Texas right in the fucking middle. Her smug expression seemed to say, ‘Thank God I’m not right there where I’m pointing with those cowboy redneck losers.’ Fucking Diane Sawyer.
The high temperatures are causing the ground to dry and crack open like the movie 2012, with deep fissures running through streets, houses, and water pipes. Utility companies are reporting four times the normal number of water pipe leaks for summer, and some cities like Kemper, Texas face serious water shortages. Kemper, home to 1150 thirsty people, had to shut off water service entirely for two days after 14 major water line breaks emptied its water towers. In Robert Lee, the town’s reservoir is down to 1%, which means if the drought continues through March, the National Guard will have to truck in water from, um, who knows where—all the towns within 40 miles are also running low on water. The nearest operating car wash is 32 miles away in San Angelo. Robert Lee’s on phase 3 water restrictions which means there’s no outdoor watering whatsoever and officials encourage families to find multiple uses for bathwater.
Since Texas has an inordinately high number of people with, shall we say, poor decision making skills (cough—Rick Perry—cough), this means, from 1998 to 2011, we’ve had more children left in cars to burn alive than any other state—71. The next highest is Florida with 56. Kids aren’t the only victims; over in Parker County, nine horses died of thirst when left without water for several days. An elderly woman in Dallas died of heat stroke after her AC unit was stolen and she couldn’t afford to replace it. In my own town of Plano, a football coach keeled over and died during practice.
Taken together, how does one interpret this information? Well, I will tell you: the sun seeks to murder us and reduce the amount of cumulative global happiness. The outdoors has become, for all intents and purposes, an uninhabitable wasteland. The only reason to be outdoors is because you’re traversing to another indoor facility. Pools, water parks, and lakes, previously an unfailing refuge from the heat, are boiling like hot tubs. Hawaiian Falls, a water park in The Colony, dumped one ton (more than 2,000 pounds) of ice into their wave pool in a desperate attempt to bring in attendance. Sooner or later though, that ice will melt, heat up, and boil again; then they’ll need another ton of ice.
If it were up to me, the federal government would begin investing in a complex network of underground tunnels, connecting homes to gigantic state-run industrial facilities where mankind would toil in cool comfortable darkness 200 feet below ground. The tunnels would also connect to museums, theme parks, food courts, and schools. Soon, our bodies would grow pale, thick, and weathered; hair would begin sprouting in odd places. When food ran out, we would breed the weaker members of our species above-ground like cattle, then devour them as necessary. This is the “morlocks scenario,” and although it’s a morally repugnant dystopian nightmare world, I feel it’s the one best suited to present climate conditions.
I only participate in a few outdoor activities and they are all untenable at this point. Swimming in the pool is like jumping in a hot bowl of chicken noodle soup (I have Styrofoam noodles). Running around the nearby high school track during the day is some blistering Mephistophelean shit; the only time I can run is around midnight, and even then, it’s uncomfortable. When I take the dog for a walk, she turns around after a few yards and drags me back to the house. The leather seat of my car scorches skin, and if the seat belt buckle brushes my arm, it will cauterize my deliquescent flesh like an iron pressed to ice cream.
So enjoy your mild weather, New York. Enjoy your low of 62 degrees, Los Angeles. Fuck you, Diane Sawyer. You probably all think this weather is some sort of punishment on the region of the country least likely to believe in global warming, and maybe it is, but there are innocent bystanders here. I don’t deserve this. It’s unreasonable, it’s unnecessary, and I don’t appreciate it.