You folks in my neck of the woods may have noticed that the temperature has dipped a bit at night — temporarily, I’m sure. Granted, temperatures have dipped across much of the U.S., but when it gets down into the lower 30s in the South, even for just a night or two, folks around here basically act the way you normal folks would if they were stranded on the planet Hoth.
I’m just kidding, of course. I’ve been out of the South many times, and y’all ain’t normal. I mean, sure, we’re crazy from the heat down here, but y’all got some frozen brain cells in other parts of the nation. None of us are normal … thank goodness. Normal people are boring.
Now, if you don’t remember the planet Hoth, it is the sixth planet in the Hoth system and is where the rebels were hiding at the beginning of “The Empire Strikes Back.” The planet is infested with tauntauns, and the rebels got so tired of hitting the creatures with their land-speeders that they finally decided to just ride them around instead. I learned all this on Wookieepedia, which I swear is a real thing that I’ve known about for literally minutes now.
Because it got a little bit cold here last night — not as cold as Hoth, of course, where it can dip down to -60 Celsius at night, which, in Fahrenheit is exactly, well, really cold, too — I was able to sleep well for a change. I still flopped around like a salmon caught by one of those bears on that live YouTube channel for the world’s most easily entertained humans (I have it bookmarked.), but I got in hours of sleep. I slept almost as long as Han when they froze him in carbonite in that unforgettable scene after Princess Leia said, “I love you,” and he responded, “Yeah, that’s the word on the street.”
I’ve tried to find some carbonite to help my sleep, but the closest thing I’ve found is melatonin, which has fewer side effects than carbonite with the notable exception that it causes you to make way too many Star Wars references in a single post.
It was the best night’s sleep I had since I spent a week in Opelika, Alabama. It was October, which is still summer in the South in our new climate, but I set my hotel room temperature to its lowest level (Hothy, I believe it’s called) and turned the fan I brought from home to its highest level. At night, I curled up under the covers with my nose peeking out until it froze. It eventually fell off, but I slept like Han.
When I was a kid on family trips to Florida, my dad would turn the hotel air-conditioner to Hoth-like levels. This was the same man who wouldn’t let us run the A/C for more than 5 minutes at home and would fuss if you put your face right up in the vent of the window unit.
“You’re blocking the air!”
But get a room at the Dead Squid Smell Motel in Panama City Beach, and he became a polar bear. Meanwhile, my sister and I would come in from the pool and turn into popsicles, much like Han. They would have to shut down the Miracle Strip amusement park to redirect the electricity to our motel room.
Now that I’m older, I get it. Conservation is important, and you shouldn’t waste electricity if you’re paying for it. However, if it’s free A/C, use it all. You should leave a room of free A/C refreshed and just a touch of frostbite.
Thank goodness Mother Nature is finally cooperating a little bit at night. It’s definitely more convenient than going down to the Circle K and stringing my hammock in the Beer Cave between the piles of unsold Bud Light cases.
When it comes to getting a good night’s sleep, my advice is to make the room as cold as possible. If it’s chilly outside, open a window. If you’re in room 213 at the Dead Squid Smell Inn, run it full blast even if it does sound like an F-14 Tomcat taking off from your balcony. And never sleep without a fan blowing on you at a minimum setting of Category 4 hurricane.
And may the Force be with you.