Too hot, too much running around

Yikes. This weather. I spent the day with my daughter and granddaughter at the Science Museum of Minnesota, and before we left this morning, we closed all the windows in the house, you know, for security reasons. When I got home, it was like an E-Z Bake Oven in here. It was also raining. I opened everything up and got fans going, but here it is midnight and I am cooked. I can’t sleep through this, and I was feeling nauseous anyway — not a good sign, one of the symptoms of potential heat stroke — so I got up and doused myself with cold water to try and cool down. Did you know cold showers don’t help you sleep, either?

Oh, well, it was a good day with Iliana. Here are the favorite things Iliana found at the museum, to give you a taste of what a 3-year old likes.

  • Dinosaurs, of course. Lots of mounted skeletons — I think this may have been when the sheer size of things sunk in.
  • Quetzalcoatlus. Boy, those things were big. There’s a life-sized model of one standing in a corner, and Iliana liked running around between its limbs. It was like a huge tent.
  • Tiny chairs. This is an odd one: there’s a display on perspective and scale that consists of just an oversized chair, a normal chair, and a tiny little chair. As it turns out, the tiny chair was exactly her size. She just wanted to sit in it. We had to go back to that exhibit a couple of times.
  • Musical stairs. There are a couple of flights of stairs equipped with sensors, and each step plays a different tone. She made her grandfather go up and down that one several times.
  • Rocks. I told her I’d get her something from the gift shop. She browsed and settled on this display of polished colored rocks with little bags, and you could fill a bag with rocks of your choice for just $5. Cheap! So she left the museum clutching her precious bag of colored stones. I asked if she was going to be a geologist when she grows up, and she said “Yes, I am!” with great certainty. I’m not sure if she knows what a geologist is, though.

And then I came home to roast.


  1. Rich Woods says

    No, no, no! There was no death before the Fall of Man. This is how we know that there were no Mesozoic Death-Storks in the Garden of Eden.

  2. yknot says

    If there is a Heaven, your encouragement of, and patience with, Iliana’s discoveries have earned your place in it.

  3. says

    Awwww, one of my favourite pic and memories of me a few years older is in front of the Brachiosaurus humerus in the Naturkundemuseum in Berlin.
    As for the weather: summer got cancelled here. We’ll have 8 more weeks of 20ish degrees C. But I didn’t drown and my house still stands, so I’m not complaining. I’m just crying about my tomatoes.
    Though, if your house got hot with the windows closed, there really is a problem with the insulation, probably “what insulation”. If it gets hot here I close all windows and shutters in the morning and open them again when it cools down at night.

  4. blf says

    Giliell@6, Great to know you’re Ok! Pity about the tomatoes, but hopefully there are no zucchini (courgette) or pea survivors.

    Poopyhead had dinosaur insulation installed a few years ago (WRAPTOR!).

    The “close all windows and shutters in the morning and open them again when it cools down at night” thing is essentially de rigueur here in S.France. The older builldings, like the one with the lair, have thick walls, creating a rather large insulating air-gap between the outer shutter and inner window. In the case of the lair, I also keep the sunlights open (day and night), to let in cool air at night, and to let out hot air (which rises) during the day, as well as to reduce the amount of glass creating what would otherwise be a greenhouse (there are no shutters nor effective shades on the sunlights, sadly). (There is no A/C, so keeping the sunlights open isn’t wasting any energy per se; I just have to remember to close them when it does rain…)

  5. birgerjohansson says

    This is the last mega-hot day in Northern Sweden, so my brain will hopefully get unscrambled and allow me to make intelligent comments some day in the future.
    Igneous rocks or sedimentary ones? It is fun to know approximately how many billions of years old they are…
    Dinosaurs… Sean Hannity was doing his thing. Geraldo came up, and showed alarming signs of vestigal ethics by calling him out for gaslighting his audience about January 6th.

  6. davidc1 says

    ” She made her grandfather go up and down that one several times.”
    Pull the other one doc ,maybe the other way round .

  7. steve1 says

    I was crazy about dinosaurs when I was a young kid. I was going to be a paleontologist with great certainty as well.

  8. says


    Pity about the tomatoes, but hopefully there are no zucchini (courgette) or pea survivors.

    There weren’t any peas this year, because the garden wasn’t ready back when it was time to plant them, but hopefully my family will learn the true horrors of the so called “Zucchinischwemme” (a flood of courgettes) ion the weeks to come.

    Poopyhead had dinosaur insulation installed a few years ago (WRAPTOR!).

    Doesn’t seem to work against heat or dinosaurs. I’d need to know the U value* of that.
    *Having our house dragged kicking and screaming into the 21st century taught me a lot of jargon

  9. ANB says

    Makes me miss my own 3-year old granddaughter, but not where she lives (and I used to live). Central Valley of CA will be well past 100 today. The average high for this week on the Mendocino coast is 62. 107 degrees 30 minutes inland.

  10. birgerjohansson says

    BWAHAHAHA! Tonight we get a different weather pattern, with clouds, low temperatures and rain.
    Tommorrow I shall go forth into the world, like the ‘mud demons’ in ‘Riddick’!

  11. birgerjohansson says

    Dang! Tpyo .
    Also, I have a vacation but walked past my place of work to feed the birds. They are almost as cute as small humans….
    Mostly pigeons with some magpies and sea gulls. Even some small songbirds- they usually stay clear of the big corvids, as those are predatory bastards.

  12. garnetstar says

    Hope you felt better when you cooled off, PZ.

    For all of us now, we have to know something called the “wet-bulb temperature”, unless you live in a desert or other region where there’s no humidity or severe drought due to climate change.

    When the relative humidity ( = what percentage of water vapor that air can maximally contain before it’s saturated) is high, your sweat can’t evaporate, and much lower temperatures–like 28 C, I seem to recall–can quickly be fatal. So, now we need to know that, and the relative humidity at every temperature, to even stay alive. Thanks, climate change!

  13. says

    A severe January storm knocked down trees and caused damage in my neighborhood that required the removal of a couple of big trees that survived the storm, but had become dangerous. The trees used to shade my home from the afternoon sun. In their absence, the kitchen turned into a whole-room oven. Who needed a stove? Having just finished paying for the January damages, I invested in an exterior shade for the kitchen window. Sweet relief! No more heatstroke from trying to use the kitchen (not that I did that much anyway).

  14. fishy says

    My dad put an attic fan in his house and he was glad that he did. I understand they used to do this same sort of thing in the deep south before electricity where they had a cupola and gaslight to create an updraft.
    When I come home from work my place can be hot, but I have found that I can enjoy sitting in front of the computer if my feet are soaking in cool water (keep a towel handy). I’m barely dressed, of course, and I can grab hold of my thigh and feel the blood in the artery cooling.

  15. Ridana says

    I shut up my house a little after sunrise, and it will stay relatively cool (<85°F) until mid-to late afternoon. Around sundown I open front and back doors and windows, to catch the delta breeze, if there is one (none today, since we seem to have a high sitting on us keeping day temps over 100 and lows above 65). By 9 or 10pm it usually cools to around mid 80s again, so I can use my computer with extra fans for a few hours without frying it, though the tv has decided anything over 80 is too hot to show a picture.

    So basically I’m only alive at night during the summer. While that’s also true in the winter, I can at least periodically cycle through daytimes. I suppose the “bright” side is that I haven’t had to turn on the heat for the past two winters. :/

  16. magistramarla says

    Awww. Iliana is such a cutie! I’ve gone on a few such expeditions with grandkids – they are hard to keep up with!
    We live 1 mile from the Monterey Bay, and the sea breeze really helps to cool the house.
    Unfortunately, the windows with screens face North and South. The only opening facing the bay are the French doors onto the patio. We didn’t dare to leave them open because we don’t want our cats to escape. We have coyotes, raccoons,bobcats and even the occasional mountain lion in the neighborhood.
    My husband has been building sturdy screen doors for the French doors, and they are nearly finished. He’s at the point of painting and making them pretty. That sea breeze really makes a difference!