5 Things I Hated About The Summer Heatwave

Just as we thought our children would grow up without ever knowing what a British summer was, we were delivered an entire decade's worth of sunshine in one go this year. Was I celebrating? Was I heck.
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Of course I didn’t actually hate it. Who could? Maybe slugs? Or long john salesman? In fact, life is always more tolerable in the heat (unless you’re at an 18-30s holiday resort). People are generally happier and friendlier. Urban areas become livelier. The streets throng with revellers. And rather than getting pointlessly drunk in a pub or an alleyway… you can go and do it in a park.

But… it isn’t all jugs of Pimm's and ice cream. The sun brings with it a darker side.

As soon as the temperature rises a few notches, a chain of simultaneous events occurs. The idiots put down their copies of FHM and Heat, turn off whatever celebrity-driven show they are watching and emerge to spread misery and pain like a giant plague of morons.

Let’s take a look at some of the biggest culprits:

1: Riding in cars with boys blasting out horse-shit music

You know that moment when you are happily walking along in the sun, enjoying the murmur of everyday life i.e. the din of traffic, ear-piercing emergency vehicle sirens, car horns being used like machine guns, incessant mobile phone ringtones and the relentless use of the word ‘fuck’.

And then you hear something. A deep repetitive thud. The water in your bottle of Fiji water shudders on every beat. You scan the horizon for an approaching T-Rex. Then a car, souped-up to the max, pulls closer. Its occupants, an array of dead-eyed testosterone-fuelled meatheads glare aggressively at anything that casts a shadow. Woe betides if they see a woman.

But it’s a wonder their ears aren’t bleeding as the inane house music or aggressive hip hop music or God forbid, Crunk, is being blasted out from the car’s speakers at a volume that would even shame Spinal Tap.

These morons probably think they are doing everyone else a favour, sharing their finely developed musical tastes with the masses. I wonder if at some point somewhere a member of their entourage has had the courage to say to their alpha male superior: ‘Hey Kev… shall we turn Flo Rida down a little? I know it’s an amazing song but I think it’s a little well… anti-social?’

2: Fifty pairs of redundant shades

Let’s face it… shades are pointless. People argue that they keep the sun out of your eyes but the simpler solution is to just not look at the sun.

Some people wear them because it gives them a layer of confidence. A psychological gain from people not being able to see their eyes or perhaps more sinisterly, that they can gaze at will unnoticed.

Others don them on the narcissistic assumption it makes them look, that most sought after and almost undefinable of man-made human traits, ‘cool’.

Either way, the shades always end up spending most of their time perched on the top of the wearer’s head after they’ve realised that actually they impede movement and ability to do simple tasks.

Bonus points for those who persevere and insist on wearing them in the supermarket and for the embarrassing middle-aged man on the train wearing an ill-advised pair that make him look like a sexual predator/football hooligan.

There also appears to be some sort of competition among woman as to who can wear the biggest most stupid-looking pair of sunglasses possible. It will only be a matter of time until Posh Spice is spotted in a Milan Jewellery boutique wearing a couple of satellite dishes over her eyes.

3: No ball games

Ahh... parks. Oasis’s of green amongst the man-made sprawl. Bastions of flourishing nature. Shimmering ponds and mighty trees. And when the sun comes out… watch out for the stampede!

So, you’ve found your nice peaceful spot. You’ve popped open your BBQ flavoured Pringles. You’ve found the page in the modern classic that you’re a trying to read but has actually become a chore. The peace and harmony washes over you.

Then… you glimpse something out the corner of your eye. Before you can react, an object bounces through your space knocking your bottle of special-offer Sauvignon Blanc over like a bowling pin.

You look up and there’s a group of gurning belly-laughing lads playing with some sort of projectile. They are having the times of their lives!

But everyone around them has lost their sanctuary.  The opportunity of some R&R has gone. Now you have to keep one eye on the football they launch at each other. Or the Frisbee that is hurled like a morning star. Or my personal favourite… the rugby ball. With its unpredictable bounce keeping everyone on their toes.

Please note: Beware the Aerobe. When that thing comes out you might as well go home. Many a head has been severed by the lethal red ring of death.


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4: Topless men

Naked woman are more accessible than ever in 21st century society just a click of a button or a glance at the contents of inane ‘lads' mags’ away. Or even more cringe worthily still on page three of The Sun

But have no fear defenders of equality, the sunshine takes steps to level things up. Walk down any High Street when the solar system’s biggest star is high in the sky and you will be greeted with a gallery of male upper torsos proudly on display.

These swaggering yobs can normally be spotted popping in and out of bookies, sipping Magners in downmarket boozer beer gardens or just simply hanging around on unfortunate town centre benches or walls.

Another side bonus of these visual treats is a plethora of ugly blue tattoos and the more modern phenomenon of a few yards of Calvin Klein jockey shorts.

5: Parklife

If you wondered what an apocalyptic wasteland looks like then you’ve no need to go to Manchester anymore. Simply take a look at a park after a long day’s sunbathing.

The bins will be spewing out litter but at least those people made an effort to actually dispose their waste in a sociably correct way. The rest of the once welcoming green space will be in danger of vanishing beneath a sea of garbage.

Beer cans and beer boxes, Lambrini and WKD bottles, kettle chip packets, empty bags of Haribo, tubes of Pringles (although these provide excellent homes for hedgehogs) and dishes of dried out crusty dips will decorate the landscape.

People have long since fantasised about robots one day taking over the world but what about plastic bags?

But seriously, if we can learn anything from the glorious heatwave the UK has just enjoyed than it is that there’s a very fine line between a developed intelligent civilised society and a feral bunch of wild animals.