Light a candle. Draw the required sigils. Now, raise your arms above your head and slowly, gently, exhale your soul. You won’t need it here. This is Audioccult, and it’s time to get low. Illustration: SHALTMIRA
“THERE SHOULD BE ANOTHER SISTER ACT SEQUEL!!!”— words shrieked at 4am in haste, yet no more shall I repent nor suffer gray malaise, for summer is here at last. A quick stretch and a casting of Anthony Kiedis’ finger bones for luck. In the distance a bird cries out into the early morning sky, signaling another day of listening to music and looking at people’s thoughts about listening to music. By 6pm, however, I can flip both birds at work and spend the rest of the day in the sun, listening to music and talking to my friends about listening to music. But before I leave the house, I always make sure to pay attention to a few important rules—after all, isn’t the heat of summer a lot more ‘cool’ when you feel secure? I can’t always be swaddled up in a blanket, wrapped tightly so my sissy-boy arms can’t struggle while I get rocked and cradled, but I can be swaddled in helpful tips! Here’s a few, from me to you.
– Looking for your summer “hot spot”? Try the park!
You gonna sit in an office all day there, buddy? Heck no, you want to get out there into the world and put your feet and body all over it! Relaxing in the warm summer grass will suck the cold void of day-to-day cognizance from you in no time flat!
– Go to a fun restaurant and hang out with pals; or maybe with a lady, you Romeo!
“Everyday’s a Friday,” when you’re chowing down on a deep-friend mound of beer-batter quesadillas with friends, but get this—you can bring a date in on that action! Imagine yourself sitting in one of Chili’s gourmet thrones, you and her; freeze-frame and spin it in bullet-time as you throw another calf-elbow popper at her mouth like you’re a cool, partying Neo. Laughing it up, too bad she didn’t laugh when I ordered a “Penis Colada”, nor when I repeated it louder and funnier and also elbowed her in the ribs. Yet her dating page very specifically emphasized liking to have fun and a sense of humor. Who’s the real douchebag here? Not you, pal, as long as you remember these summer safety tips!
– Ride bikes in a t-shirt and shorts!
What are you doing walking around, when you could be biking instead? Not only is bike-riding an excellent way to reduce your carbon footprint, it’s also a way to have fun while exercising. Ditch those pesky subway ticket prices and pedal on down to the lake, the park or maybe to the community college where I’ll interrupt your writing course to loudly read all the emails I wrote you, including the ones I never sent and the ones you didn’t receive because of unconstitutional filtering software. Don’t forget a bottle of water or Gatorade!
– Get some books from your local library!
“Whoa, hold up! You want me to stay inside and read during summer? Are you fucking stupid?” Guess what though, instead of reading them inside, curl up on your deck, patio or backyard chair. The sun is nature’s reading lamp, and when you’re outside you aren’t driven into panic attacks by all the letters from so-called legal authorities. “Please transfer my client the money you owe her”, hmm how about I transfer my love of contemporary adult avant-garde fiction on to her instead. I have a dozen limited-edition journals about why cities are allegories for fear.
– Try joining a local sports team!
Every night when I wake I’m covered in sweat. My teeth ache from clenching them, though whatever dreams I’m conjuring vanish from memory upon waking. Occasionally I will sit on the edge of my bed staring at the wall opposite and squeezing my hands into fists, wanting to just take my head in my hands and hit it again and again and again and again. If you have the same kind of moxie, why not try softball? Many teams require uniforms, but some accept casual wear. Beat the heat with your favorite t-shirt, just like I’ve beaten it by developing an especially cold attitude toward my associates and friends!
AND REMEMBER: Always ask a parent before you go somewhere!