I hear a common refrain from people a lot on days like this in Los Angeles. In fact, I heard it today, which was sort of the motivation for this post. I’m talking about how people lament something like “this weather depresses me” when speaking of atypically cloudy or cold days. The weather here has been unusually bleak. September normally brings us the hottest weather of the year. In fact, it was almost one year ago Los Angeles experienced its hottest day on record which I detailed in a sweltering post that night. These depressed people usually are the types who adore the sun and its accompanying hot weather. These same people seem to wither away into insignificant frostbitten retreat as soon as the thermometer falls below 50 degrees or the weather forecast hints at the slightest cloud cover. The weather forecast this moment in Los Angeles has the look of late October or November, not September 16.
Personally I love gray and bleak weather. In fact, I’m a bit repulsed by the forecast’s prediction for the rekindling hot spell beginning Sunday. I hate anything 85 degrees and up. I do not like bright, hot sun and I do not like heat. I can’t understand how people get depressed by gray weather. That is when I thrive! I’ve noticed that people who get depressed when it’s cloudy are usually very outgoing, people-oriented, restless folks. There’s something about the extroverted and externally focused personality that finds relief in the sun and worship of heat. People like me who love cold, stormy weather are usually subdued, introverted and unpleasant. We are not the warmest or most jovial people. Frankly, hot weather sorta depresses me. The sun is too bright. It emits way too much light and sensory stimuli and rattles me. Sometimes when I’m walking down the street in the morning and the sun is harshly slamming my ass with its hot rays, I try to stay in the large trees’ shadows. I dash from shadow to shadow in order to stay out of direct sunlight.
There is absolutely nothing redeeming about the sun or sunlight. I love the winter and autumn for this reason. These are the days of shrinking sunlight. The sun begins to drift away from our axis and it hangs at a charming distance in the Southern sky. It loses its singeing quality. During the winter the sun is neutered. I love leaving work when it’s dark. I love the dark! I wish the human race did not neeed the sun to survive because I would be quite happy with 365 days of total darkness. Candles and incandescent lights are all that I would need!
Which brings up another thing I don’t get about the sun. Why do so many people enjoy laying out in it? What is that all about? What a destructive and uncomfortable pastime. “Sunbathing.” That’s the worst thing in the world I can think of. I find tanned skin revolting. Especially when the tan is worn by a person whose skin tone is genetically fair. What a sight. It’s not right and it’s not sexy. Some women worship the sun despite the fact their naturally ivory complexion does not withstand UV’s well, but they do not seem to mind that they are well on their way to wearing the weathered and leathery parchment-like skin of many sunburns past. Unnatural tans look like crap on women. Women can wear pale skin and it’s beautiful. A very pale complexion is feminine and delicate. Women don’t need to screw that up with awful suntans. Granted, whereas pale skin is the embodiment of femininity, it does not look great on men. Men generally can stand a tan. There is something inherently masculine about tans. Still, I think abuse of the sun’s rays, besides boding possible unfavorable health effects later in life, also spells the doom of premature aging and really disgusting chapped skin. I’m Mexican and I tan very well but since I hate the sun, I usually wear a farmer’s tan because I don’t wander around in sandals or tank tops all day long. My nautral complexion, as evidenced by the tops of my feet and my chest, is pretty sickeningly pale. But if I get too much sun, I’m fortunate in that my burn lasts a day or 2 at the most and then quickly transforms into a healthy, Hollywood-approved tan with minimal peeling.
I took this rather strange photo earlier which contrasts my daytime sun-driven hand/arm skin tone, and the sheltered, never-see-the-sunlight natural skin tone of my foot. The contrast is alarming and I realize the untanned portions of my body are not exactly the epitome of tanned allure, but who cares.