April 22 ē 06:26 AM

Go ahead, turn up the heat, for cold-blooded me

June 13, 2007
Let's see. I'll need my coffee cup, thermos, purse, car keys, and down-filled parka.

Yes. Parka.

Okay, so I exaggerate a little, but I just about need a snowmobile suit to keep from turning into a block of ice in our air conditioned office. Even though my cooling vent is completely blocked off — as is co-worker Maria's — and there's only a hint of cool air circulating in our end of the building, there's enough chill inside to raise goose bumps along my arms. Now that's attractive.

I am one of those individuals who is just about always cold. Even in my own home. All the time. Seven days a week, 52 weeks a year. Must be that Mediterranean blood.

Like all of you, in the winter I 'dial down,' so I won't consume too much precious wood or fuel oil. In the summer, since the house is umbrella-ed by a vast and dancing canopy of leaves from all the trees, not one kilowatt (or whatever) of sunlight touches even one inch of the home so it always stays unbelievably cool. Remarkably so, which to most people would be a blessing but to me, of course, it's not quite. However, I do know that I could grow a heck of a patch of mushrooms and/or chill a bottle of champagne, which I suppose is a blessing should I ever find myself without groceries or a refrigerator. At least I'd be able to give a toast...even if it was to, well, fungi.

Give me 80 degrees and I'm perfectly happy, comfortable even, and I can take a lot more. But it's a 65-degree-maximum world out there, so even though it's the dead of summer, I need to bring a jacket or a sweater wherever I go.

Sweaters are great, sure they are, IN THE FALL.

See, I really, really like my summer clothes. Of all the selections in my closet, they're my favorite. Each season I look forward to pulling that crisp white 100 percent cotton top over my head, or slip-ping on those clunky leather sandals. I like going outside without the added bulk of scarves and coats and boots and gloves, not to mention those crazy coveralls I have to wear to shovel snow. Call me off-the-wall, but I like to move, something that's not so easy swathed in multiple layers while inflicted with teeth chattering shivers. How freeing it is to simply step outside sheathed only in a t-shirt and jeans, clogs and a bandanna. Such a dreamer I am!

See, socks just don't cut it with capri pants, and covering up that all-natural breathable cotton top with a winterlike clothing item kind of detracts from my summertime ensembles. I mean when can I let go of the long johns? I long for the day.

A couple of days ago — I kid you not — I actually turned on the electric space heater that's under my desk. And it's on again right now, though they say it's going to get to 90 degrees outside today.

Lucky for me I have the trusty heater, which has become a sort of year round office companion. In the wintertime, I'm just as cold as I am in the summer — only I don't mind it as much 'cause IT'S SUPPOSED TO BE that way.

Lately, I've been heading to my car to warm up. Diving inside and closing the door behind me for a ten minute thermal soak. Like one of those glow-in-the-dark gizmos, the car trick works to heat me up for a little while. The thing is, it's tough to get a whole lot done in the parking lot.

I suppose I could try working up a sweat, but no matter how fast my hands fly over this keyboard, the blood still runs cold through my veins.

Conjuring up a nice steamy picture of my favor-ite how-shall-I-say male-and- rather-beastly-in-the-most-beautiful-way friend doesn't work, either. Ditto for a very creative foray into my imagination involving Johnny Depp and some exotic hot springs in the desert.

So it's me and my sweater against the world, unless I can get my boss to outfit my car with a computer, telephone and fax machine — or to set up a satellite office on the equator.

Email Catherine at

Castle Creek
04 - 22 - 19
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