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Covering All Bases: July 5, 2012

A Demand Of Environmental Scientists

Dear Scientists,

Last Sunday, I spent the most peaceful, serene and pleasant time, sitting beneath a tree in my backyard. The temperature was a perfect 80 degrees Fahrenheit, the skies were a pristinely colored blue and the cool and gentle breeze was just blissful. There were no phone calls to make, no errands to attend to, and no traffic jams to fight through. I sat there with my feet up, reading on my tablet computer. If there truly can be paradise on earth, this was it. So scientists, I implore you, please find a way to extend the summer.

I know that climate change is a serious problem that many of you are working on to solve. Well, if you’re fixing it anyway, just don’t put things back to the way they were with colder winters and more snowy days. Instead, if you’re going to work on it, do it right. Let’s have summer extend from March until October. Please figure out a way to make this environmentally feasible.

Now, before you dismiss this as unreasonable, please hear me out. First of all, I think the majority of the population would agree with me. Many people always lament the passing of summer because there was not enough time to enjoy it. Think about how true that is. For those of us who work a traditional weekday schedule and aren’t lucky enough to have the summer off as students do, there are only 20 non-working days left between now and Labor Day, and that’s including both Labor Day and the Fourth of July. Figure in at least a couple of rainy days and perhaps days already booked with family obligations, and it just doesn’t leave enough time to experience all that the season offers. Whether it’s sailing along Long Island’s beautiful coastline, splashing in the ocean at Jones Beach or just watching the fireflies on a summer evening, everyone has something in the summertime that they treasure and would like to enjoy more of. Something has to be done. More time is needed.

Now, I asked nicely, but if I need to, I can get nasty. You see, I know about this little conspiracy you have been covered up through all these centuries. Since before the time of Galileo, you have been telling us that the seasons are determined because the earth tilts on its axis and as the incline changes, so do the seasons. Accordingly, each season should last for the same time. Except, I know this isn’t what really happens.

Winter lasts much longer than summer. I do not care what it says on calendars, the month of January is longer than July. I know you claim that each of those months has 31 days of equal length, but I’m not buying it. Why you continue spreading this illusion, I do not know. Maybe all of you own stock in a snow shovel company or a winter clothing manufacturer. Whatever the reason is, it doesn’t matter. To quote Jackie Gleason, “You know that I know, that you know, that I know,” that you’re hiding something. You have even used the trick of February only having 28 days just to throw everyone off track. Extend the summer or I’ll work hard to uncover the truth and expose the conspiracy.

Now, I’m not unreasonable. I understand there has to be a period of colder temperatures. Thanksgiving wouldn’t be the same if the leaves on the trees remained green instead of turning those vibrant colors of red, yellow, orange and gold. Santa Claus won’t come if the temperatures are too high, because he would overheat in that big, bulky, red suit. Watching the ball drop in Times Square in shorts and sandals just doesn’t seem right. Those who love skiing and ice hockey should get some time to enjoy their sports. And I’ll even give you February, because there is something about a romantic dinner in front of a fireplace. But that’s it. That’s where I draw the line.

Beginning on March 1, the weather must be summer-like. St. Patrick’s Day is considered a harbinger of spring, so changing it to a summer holiday wouldn’t be drastic. In fact, four leaf clovers are probably more in abundance during warmer weather when grass is thriving and not dormant. Mother’s Day could be celebrated with all of the dads grilling up something special on the barbecue. Even Halloween costumes could be more creative, if keeping warm from the autumn chill wasn’t factor.

Think about it, scientists. Wouldn’t the world be a nicer place if we all had extra time to enjoy dinners in the outdoors underneath the stars, rocking in a porch swing, and bicycling around a coastal town? We’d probably all be a little bit healthier too. If you ask most folks, they’ll probably tell you that they tend to gain more weight in the winter when they are less physically active. So, by extending the summer, it may even fight obesity.

C’mon scientists. Let’s get to work. You know, that I know, that you know, that I know, that you can do it.


Ronald Scaglia and anyone else who agrees with me