Greetings, WYMOP fans!
It’s been quite a while, I think, since I dropped an anhidrosis story on y’all, and you might have thought it had gone away as quickly and mysteriously as it came on, and I had just never mentioned this happy event.
No dice. I just stopped whining about it for a time.
There is a little twist this year, though. Spontaneously, and for no discernible reason, my anhidrosis is not total at the moment. I can perspire a little. A very little. Not enough to keep me from pushing myself into heat stroke if I’m not careful, but enough to give me a little bit of leeway that I haven’t had (without steroid treatments) for years. This little bit of leeway changes things, so I’ve been pushing myself a bit, trying to find out what my new limits are. One of the things I used to do was run, so…
...Here’s the story:
(Anhidrosis, for those of you who don’t know, is a condition where I don’t perspire, so I don’t thermoregulate, and achieving heat stroke is very, very easy for me. For the long version of anhidrosis, what it is and its effects on me, please see: No Sweat, No Problem.... Not Really! and Stubborn or Stupid? — or just plug “anhidrosis” into the search field in the upper left corner of the page to see all my non-sweating rants.)
~ ~ * * ~ ~
I ran up the hill. It was a rolling hill, so I went up for a while. Level for a while. Up for a while. Level for a while.
Up. For a while. Level for a while.
The roundabout at the top of the hill.
Down. Down is awesome. Down and level and down and level and down.
And the turnaround at the bottom of the hill...
For a while.
So I went up and down this rolling hill a few times. Okay, three times. And each time there were a couple of yards I passed where I could hear, though not see (to be fair, I was concentrating on breathing and maintaining an upright orientation — I haven’t really “run” for about six years now), people. Chatter. Parents talking to their kids. Parents talking to each-other, mostly about their kids eating things they should not eat. Parents talking to each-other while their kids were eating things they should not eat.
How should I know? I never actually saw them. Just heard them. They, however, could see me.
How do I know?
I’ll get to that part in a minute.
So I made three laps up and down the hill. By then I was pretty done-in by the heat, and I had to stop. Rest. Try to cool down.
Yeah. Cooling down would be good.
But I’m trying to see if I can cool down gradually if I keep walking. Not running any more, but not heading off into a cool shower to lower my core temp either. Just… walking.
The problem is that I’m trying to give off heat, but on a nice warm (77 degrees!), sunny day like this one, whenever I’m in the sun, the direct sun, I can feel it heating my skin.
I’m heating my skin on my own, Mr. Sun, but thank you very much for playing.
So if I’m going to get rid of heat I need to have something flowing over my skin to draw it away, and if it’s not going to be nice, cool water, then it needs to be air.
Lots and lots of air.
Direct sun? Mmm… not so much.
I could of course simply burrow into the soil beneath thickly-growing and low-to-the-ground trees or bushes to find cool earth to lie upon as well as protection from the hot sun, much like a dog. Hey, dogs don’t perspire either, and it works for them, right?
So I set off walking two more laps up and down the hill. Mindful of the long stretches where there was no shade, no cover from that hot and burning Eye-in-the-Sky, I brought along my own shade.
I… I brought along a parasol.
Okay, technically it was my father’s golf umbrella, this nice red, white and blue affair, nicely patriotic and very good at keeping things from falling on you from the sky: rain, hail, and ultraviolet light.
But let’s face it, it was a beautiful, sunny day, and I was using the damn thing to keep the sun off my pretty skin while I went out for a stroll to take in the air.
It was a parasol. I’m going to call it a parasol.
So there I was, traipsing along with my parasol, up and down the hill I’d just been running on. I was going up. And up. The parasol was working out pretty well. I’d move it out of the way every once in a while, say to myself My God, that’s hot, and slip it back in betwixt myself and the evil, demon sun.
Everything was fine and dandy, like sugar candy.
Then I approached the first of the conversation houses. I could hear the people in on the porch, women and children, the occasional deeper, male contribution. I could hear them quite well, even better than before since there wasn’t the chuk-chuk-chuk of my sneakers chuffing the pavement, nor was there the disturbing sound of my breathing, which, while I was running, brought to mind B-Grade horror movies. The kind where they can’t afford real special effects.
I could hear them so well I knew the exact moment when they stopped talking, laughing, and making all that fun and normal noise.
Just as I came into view, or where I thought I was in view, they all went silent. Pin-drop silent, the kind you see in movies. Or high-school. The kind of silence that says “Look, pal, you don’t see us, and you obviously don’t hear us, because we aren’t making any sound. In fact, we aren’t even here. All that noise you heard before? Oh, that was just your imagination. We’re not here. Gone. And we’re going to stay gone until you walk past and are out of sight again. Then we’re coming back, just popping back into existence so we can talk about you. So… hurry up, would you? We’re bursting here.”
Nope, I didn’t feel conspicuous or uncomfortable at all.
So I continued my walk, fighting the urge to do the old “facepalm” by wringing both hands on the handle of my parasol.
As soon as I passed the conversation picked up again. Why do people always forget that one does not need to be seen to be heard?
A fluke, I thought. It was just a natural lull in the conversation — it had nothing to do with me, right?
Then I got to the next “conversation house”.
Same deal. Exactly the same.
As far as I could tell, nobody had even noticed me when I jogged past. Six times.
...and just how conspicuous did I feel, traipsing about with my pretty parasol?
Oh, only about as much as a giant pimple on the ass of a supermodel at a Sports Illustrated Swimsuit shoot.
So I made two trips up and down the hill. Passed each house four times. Eight suspicious and total silences. By the time I was done I was sort of cooled down, but I felt like I was about six inches tall — while my parasol seemed to be more than eight feet across.
From now on, when I try running, I think I’ll do it at night.
Talk to you later.
|Yeah... who wouldn't talk if this strolled by?|
...and just for the fun of it, here's my favorite paranormal prank video from YouTube.
My favorite parts? The way the pranker is laughing before the prank, and the way the prankee is breathing just after. It might be mean of me, but I love this!