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Hot Summer

Hot summer. Hottest on record so far. You would think that when the earth is at aphelion, its farthest distance from the sun, it would be cooler down here, but it’s not the case. In January, smack in the middle of winter, the earth is at perihelion, its closest distance to the sun. Always thought to get my hands close to the fire made them warmer. It’s early July and air conditioners are on continuously throughout the neighborhood. You can hear them, some hum, some rattle. A lot of clothes being shed. Bikini tops and shirtless guys in baggy shorts. When the earth is at aphelion and the moon is opposite side from the sun; that’s an aphelion duet and there is magic in the harmony. Even at our farthest point away, the citizens of this town are baking, and things are feeling, well, the opposite of what they should be.


Yet with North America tilting sunward, half the earth under the broiler, with the hottest days to come, there are a few folks around here dressed like it's winter. So on this hot week in July, a day when the full moon sets when the sun rises; when terra and luna are farthest from the sun, opposing forces find a common place, a narrow path, where miracles happen, in a city that may need them.


An illustration of Kepler’s three laws of motion, which show two planets that have elliptical orbits around the Sun.

Credit: Wikipedia/Hankwang

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