Summer in Texas is a fiery beast that can’t be defeated. It feeds upon your sweat. It thrives on your sunburns. And every year it comes back like a horror movie monster: stronger, hotter, and more merciless than ever before.
But Texans, ever resourceful and resilient, always find ways to endure the seemingly endless 100-degree stretches. Here are some of the top things that Texans do during those dastardly dog days.
Turn Anything into a Pool
What do you do with a giant abandoned dumpster? Flush that sucker out and transform it into a swimming pool, or course? Just make sure you really clean it out good. You don’t know where that thing’s been. Ew, actually, you do know where that thing’s been, so put some elbow grease into that scrub or spring for a pre-cleaned shipping container. Pro tip: giant coolers can double as kiddie pools for the wee ones when the grownups need to use the real plastic kiddie pool as a bigger beer cooler.
Search For Shady Parking Spots, Not Close Ones
True Texans know this ritual/survival tactic by heart. You don’t park as close to the store as you can. You park under whatever shade you can find. It’s better to sweat it out on your way from the car to the store than to return to a furnace on wheels.
Sneak into Movies
We’re not condoning such illicit behavior. We’re just saying that some folks buy a ticket to one movie… then spend the day sneaking into others. They don’t care if they get caught. They don’t even care what movie they’re watching, really. They just don’t want to make that sweltering sprint from the theater back to the parking lot (unless they found shaded parking).
Post Pictures of Their Dashboard Temperatures
Although they stick it out gallantly, Texans like to gripe about the high temps. They even bond over it. And when the sun has soldered your fingers to your steering wheel, you’ve earned the right to bellyache. One of the most popular forms of complaining these days? Posting shots of the temperature reading on your dashboard from inside your mobile sauna. Everybody does it. You’re probably doing it right now.
When it’s this hot, all bets are off when it comes to staying comfy. Besides obviously goofy—and not entirely practical—fashion choices like cowboy boot sandals, you’re bound to see plenty of hastily prepared jorts (the dictionary term for “jean shorts”), pit-stained tees, tank tops, and sheer-bordering-on-nekkid sundresses. Nobody judges the underdressed during the drudgery. But they will laugh at fools attempting to rock leather jackets in these temps.
Water Balloon Fights
Balloon sales skyrocket in summertime thanks to this favorite form of aqua warfare. And there’s something about the jiggly casing of water balloons that makes the water even cooler. The rates of drive-by water balloonings also rise during summer, but most victims are happy to be targeted (after the initial surprise wears off).
Loiter in Grocery Stores
Maybe you have to just have to pick up one thing. Maybe there’s nothing on your shopping list at all. But that doesn’t mean you can’t linger around the frozen food section for a while. Or stick your face in those mist spritzers by the lettuce or the cooling vents by the meats.
Load Up on Blue Bell
“The Best Ice Cream in the Country” becomes your best friend in the swelter. Just make sure to stock up before the stores run bare, and try scarf it down before the sun turns it to gooey sugar milk. Pro tip: the best cure for a sunburned nose is to bury it in a pint of Blue Bell’s lime or orange sherbet.
Summertime is always Schlitterbahn time in Texas, especially now that you have four locations to choose from. And if you can’t make it to the grandest waterpark in the world (not opinion, just a fact), Texas has plenty of lazy rivers and swimming holes for leisurely drifting. The Guadalupe River, in particular, is a laid-back gem, with up to 20 miles of drifting spots between the Canyon Lake Dam and New Braunfels. Also check out the Comal River. Just make sure you bring a extra tube for your beers. Speaking of…
Drinking (Even More Than Usual)
Doctors and scientists might try to tell you that beer dehydrates you. That’s silly. Beer’s a fluid, and so are margaritas! Plus, the rim salt helps you retain water! Summer heat is the reason beer comes in cases, you know. And beer sweat cools the skin better that regular water sweat (it’s those soothing hops) and doesn’t stink as much as hard liquor sweat.