cranky hot pants

we’re having a heat wave, san-francisco style – it’s been hot here for a record-shattering two days, and the fog has actually been vanquished to its rightful place over the ocean. i’m sure we’re incurring bad weather karma here, and will pay at some point, but i’m enjoying it. it’s nice to go out without the security blanket of three extra layers (you know, just in case the temperature drops by 45 degrees within 12 seconds of sunset).

apparently, though, this heat comes with another price…

in the past day, i’ve had two people muse aloud about potential heat-related crime increases in san francisco. these musings were both accompanied by overt or implied references to a spike lee movie i have not seen, wherein characters experience the heat-induced crankiness of brooklyn gangstas and housewives. or something.
anyway, my point is that heat seems to make a lot of people cranky. while i’m not unsympathetic to people’s malaise, i don’t get the whole crime thing.

does heat really drive people over that lawless edge? or is it just a convenient excuse for poseur felons who need an excuse? after all, what self-respecting lawbreaker would resort to saying ‘i was really hot and sweaty, your honor, and i just couldn’t take it anymore…i had to mug that old lady.’

what about the cold? is there is corresponding increase in crime when it gets really cold? maybe there’s just an increase in criminal feelings, because it’s too damn cold to actually go outside and act on them.

it reminds me of statistics that are often quoted regarding the general increase in crime when there’s a full moon. many people used to say this had to do with lycanthropy or related lunar myths blah blah blah, when in fact, cops have said it just happens because perps can see what they want to steal, break, or hurt more easily…

maybe the whole heat thing is the same. it’s all just a big lie. heat-related crime is all about people breaking into rich folks air-conditioned houses. they don’t want the stuff – they just want to chill out for awhile.

so just remember, if it’s over 80 degrees during the day, make sure to lock your doors at night, especially if you’ve got air conditioning. the bad guys can hear those AC units whirring and groaning outside your house – they know you’re cool in there…

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One thought on “cranky hot pants

  1. John

    I believe there is a scene in the 1967 movie “In the Heat of the Night” in which Sheriff Gillespie, played by Rod Steiger explains that most murders happen at 104 degrees (F) (40 centigrade). The logic is something along the lines of – any hotter is just too hot to do anything, and any cooler is bearable, but 104 just makes people mad. I can’t find the quote on IMDB. Anyway I think your safe on the streets of SF until the temperature reaches 104 an probably beyond, After all the Sheriff was talking about the Deep South and SF is much more tolerant.
    Come to think of it it may have been “Cat on a hot tin roof”……Any way two great movies for this weather….


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