A Month of Summer

28Jun11

Gull & fishTuesday, June 21 was the first day of summer. I saw it on a calendar, so it must be true. Otherwise, how would anyone know? As long as the sun is out it feels almost like summer. But it’s late June and how many nights have there been when you could go out without a jacket?

86 degreesBy July, it will probably be warm enough to leave your windows open 24/7 for a few weeks, and we might even get a heat wave or two. But by the second week in August, the night air will again have that New England nip. Summers don’t seem as hot as they used to be but winters, as we saw this past season, seem to be getting worse.
Snow Storm
Tuesday was the day of the summer solstice. The days have been getting longer since December, culminating with the solstice on Tuesday – the day of the year with the longest period of daylight. It’s all downhill from here, folks.

Summer’s over.

Still, the solstice is considered the end of spring and the “official” start of summer. But it’s just one of many ways that we mark the beginning and end of the seasons.

Mound ConferenceWe’re told that Memorial Day is the “unofficial” beginning of summer. Weather forecasters talk about “meteorological summer,” which begins on June 1 and ends August 31. Most of us are conditioned from childhood to consider summer as beginning in late June on the last day of school and ending with the first day of school in September. Sports fans like to think of Opening Day of the baseball season as the start of summer, but around here that’s really still the middle of the winter. By that logic, winter just ended in mid-June along with the hockey season. That seems about right.

Halloween HippiesBut the summer solstice isn’t the only observance of note this week. According to the calendar on my desk – which I’m pretty sure was made by hippies – today, June 23, is “Let It Go Day.” It is, according to my hippie calendar, a day to “free yourself from all negative thoughts and worries. It’s time to let them go and allow the positive into your life in order to heal yourself.”

Oh wow, man. Far out.

June 22, according to the same calendar, was “Stupid Guy Thing Day.” It’s like, you know, a day for twenty-something females to roll their eyes and whine about all the dumb things their boyfriends do. So in other words, it’s just like every other day. What do you suppose would happen if someone made a calendar with a day designated as “Stupid Girl Thing Day?” (Now calm down, ladies. Remember – today is “Let It Go Day,” after all.)

Speaking of hippies, did I miss this year’s Solstice Sing for Peace? What a total bummer. I’m determined not to miss any more of these observances for the rest of the summer, and I’m sure you feel the same. So for my sake and yours, here are some of the more notable “holidays” occurring over the next couple of months.

July 5 is “Workaholics’ Day.” I’ll be too busy to work on that day.

July 10 is “Hot Enough for Ya Day.” By then, maybe it will be.
African Violets
July 18 is “Take Your Houseplants for a Walk Day.” Mine will be lucky if they get watered between now and July 18.

First zucchiniAugust 8 marks “Sneak Some Zucchini onto Your Neighbor’s Porch Night.” If I can manage to grow some zucchini this year, I’m keeping them. Let my neighbor grow his own squash.

August 10 is “Be Lazy Day.” Finally, a day to recover from “Workaholics’ Day.”

I propose a day on which we don’t have to hear or think about any inane observances or celebrations. I call it, “Day Off Day.”

Has a nice ring, doesn’t it?

[This column originally appeared in the June 23, 2011 Wakefield Daily Item.]

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One Response to “A Month of Summer”

  1. 1 Mike Davidson

    Mark;

    Just a general note of appreciation for the content and style of your writing and photojournalism. I moved away in 1973 after WHS graduation, and this forum is my only connection to the old hometown and the memories of growing up there. My brother, Bruce, guided me here.

    I’m thankful you have the initiative and talent for this, and hope you continue for many more years.

    Mike Davidson


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