• Image about Shahin Takes Off 07-15-2006
Summer … What a Bummer

Summertime and the livin' is easy, my patoot. The livin' is hard. Very hard.

For example, when was the last time you got a tan? I mean, the real way? Not all that indoor salon jazz.

Tell me that's easy.

Sure, it used to be. Back before skin cancer and body neurosis. Back then, you just stretched out under a hot sun, drank beer till you passed out, and woke up hours later lookin' gooood. Or lookin' fire-engine red. Whatever. First rule of old-school tanning? Sunburn flakes to suntan. See? Easy.

But these days, you have to use protection, and I don't mean more beer. First off, I mean, well, I don't know what I mean because it is too complicated to figure out. There's sunblock, sunscreen, sun care, sun stay away, sun beat it, sun search and destroy, sun rip the rays right off that smiling face of yours, etc. Each has a secret ingredient, like aloe vera or mashed onion essence or something. Worst of all, they all have numbers that correspond mysteriously to letters, like some ancient Egyptian code. UV over SPF times 30 equals … I give up, fully clothed?

As if all of that weren't enough to deal with, proper suntanning requires that you carefully hydrate with something called - and this, I believe, is the correct technical word - water. What is this, this water? I thought you swam in it or showered in it. Now they want us to drink it?

I'm telling you, the livin' is hard.

As if tanning weren't tough enough, in the summer you also have to grill burgers. Time was, you took your ground beef, formed it into a puck, and charred it over some coals, maybe melting a slice of yellow American cheese toward the end.

Not anymore.