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Tuesday, July 03, 2012

The Long Hot Summer

Tomorrow is Independence Day in the US of A.  As I walked the rat dog this evening, I could hear fireworks exploding in the middle distance - a mildly disturbing imitation of a wartime mortar attack. It was 90 degrees  with 70% humidity at 9:30 in the evening.  The drought has turned all unsprinkled plants dry and dead. Electricity consumption is spiking as everyone cranks up the aircon.  I haven't felt or seem anything like this since the summer of 1988.  Coincidence - in the summer of 1988, I was finishing up a divorce from my first wife.  I also met my current wife during that heat wave.  Now, in the heat of 2012's equally long hot summer, I am in the middle of another divorce proceeding.

I hate long, hot summers.

I learned a new word today - anosognosia.  Anosognosia is a condition in which a person who is suffering from a mental illness seems unaware of his or her disability.  Unlike denial, which is a psychological defense mechanism conjured up by an individual who knows that something is wrong, anosognosia is part of the disease - a bipolar disorder sufferer or a schizophrenic can be incapable of the insight necessary to recognize that he or she is suffering from a mental illness.  Anosognosia can cause heaps of trouble for the mentally ill person and their family members.

For some reason, this heat wave and anosognosia seem to go together.   Some of us lack the insight to see that climate change is a problem, even when we are living through record-breaking heat.  This may be viewed as the "New Normal."

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