by Tzippora Schapiro, age 15, from NJ
Photographs by Rosie Rimler, age 11, from NY
The first thing everyone should know about summer is this: it’s hot! You knew that, right? What you don’t know yet are ways to keep cool. Here are nine tried and true rules that you simply must know in order to get through the summer without melting!
Rule #1: Drink! This is the single most important thing to do. Drinking keeps you from getting dehydrated. When you’re dehydrated, you are tired and listless. You could even throw up. So drink whenever you can, even if you don’t feel thirsty. If anything will work to cool you off, this will. Water is best, but anything from fruit smoothies to chocolate milk is equally refreshing.
Rule #2: Don’t wear heavy clothes. Avoid sweatshirts and woolen hats, especially anything dark-colored, because darker colors absorb heat. Light-colored clothing made out of cotton is the way to go in the summer. Don’t wear heavy clothes. Avoid sweatshirts and woolen hats, especially anything dark-colored, because darker colors absorb heat. Light-colored clothing made out of cotton is the way to go in the summer.
Rule #3: Wear your hair short, or in a ponytail. Hair can lie heavy and damp on your neck, which maximizes the heat. Either cut your hair short so it’s off your neck, or wear it in a high ponytail, which might be a better idea: if you cut your hair short, it stays short for a while, and you’ll wind up with short hair in the cold winter.
Rule #4: Eat fresh foods. Cucumbers are the ultimate keeping-cool food. But if you don’t have them, try putting fresh fruits in the freezer and eating them frozen! Another cool snack is ice cubes. You can make them out of juice, chocolate milk, or even regular old water. Make sure to keep a constant supply in your freezer. You’d be surprised at how addicting they are.
Rule #5: Put your sunscreen in the refrigerator. Bet you never heard this one before! If you refrigerate your sun-screen, it’s all nice and cool when you put it on (because you’re putting on sunscreen every single day, right?).
Rule #6: Carry A shpritz fan everywhere. Shpritz fans are gadgets that include both a fan and a water-shpritzer. They are battery- run, so, as long as you have spare batteries, the fan works wherever you go. You can buy a shpritz fan in most supermarkets and drug stores.
Rule #7: Sit on swings instead of benches. Benches are nice, but swings or hammocks are even better if you are looking for a relaxing way to get a breeze. You can visit any nearby park for a swing if you don’t have one in your backyard. Hammocks are the best, because you can fall asleep in them. Just picture lying in a swaying hammock with the sun beating down on you, flies humming, someone mowing their lawn, and you, falling asleep. Aah, bliss.
Rule #8: If you do any strenuous activities, do them early in the morning or late in the afternoon. The sun is at its peak in the middle of the day. Before and after noon, it is cooler out and therefore more conducive to playing energetic sports. Sports played in the heat of the day usually end up slow-moving and lazy instead of energetic. If you do end up exerting yourself in the middle of the day, however, definitely take advantage of any shade you come across. For example, if you plan to take a jog around the block, take a jog around a tree instead. Just run circles around and around the tree, and you’ll stay in the shade of its leaves the entire time. But don’t trip over the roots!
Rule #9: Think cool thoughts. Don’t go outside and moan, “Oh man, it is so hot.” It’ll just make you hotter. Instead, think ice cubes. Think refrigerators. Think ice cold showers. Think snowmen.
Well, there you have it. The Official Guide to Getting Through the Summer Without Being Cooked, Baked, Roasted, Boiled, Barbecued, or Fried. With these rules as your beacon, you can’t go wrong!