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film criticism by maryann johanson | since 1997

it’s too hot to think; my laptop concurs

So, in case you don’t follow me on social media (if you’d like to: Twitter|Facebook), it’s been too hot to think in London all week. It’s been in the 90sF/30sC, and barely cooling down at night. For days. This is really unusual for London: even on the occasional sweltering summer days, it almost always gets nice and cool at night, so at least you can sleep. Not this week. I’ve not slept other than fitfully and for only a few hours for days now.

Of course, air-conditioning is hardly a thing in the UK — usually, it’s not needed. It is certainly not to be found in most homes (and not in the one I’m living in), which have been built to retain heat, not defeat it. What’s worse, because of the pandemic, most of the places where one might escape the heat — coffeeshops, pubs, libraries, cinemas — are either still closed, too stressfully unsafe to linger in, or not readily accessible, requiring reservations and social distancing that limits capacity. There’s just no getting away from the brutality of the weather this coronavirus summer.

Worser still, not only am I finding it difficult to think, but even if I did feel able to write, my MacBook Pro is not having it. Apparently the top of its operating range, temperaturewise, is 95F… and when it gets beyond that, so much of its resources go into trying to cool itself down that it slows to a near halt, and isn’t up to doing much else.

I suppose I could go sit and write in the frozen-food section of the nearby mega supermarket, but I think they’d frown on that. And I’d still have to wear a mask.

This is all very frustrating. I was looking forward to getting back to work this week, and nature has thwarted me.

I presume this bastard heat is part of the changing globally warmed climate for the UK, and is a New Normal that there will be no going back from.

I hate this timeline.


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