Accepting the Fact of Growing Old
Old-Timers' Time. Plus, The Alex and Ronni Show

A TGB READER STORY: Hot in Houston

By Fritzy Dean

Frank Billingsley, Channel 2’s weather man, is worried about me. Every afternoon he looks earnestly into the camera and tells me it’s hot. He adds that the elderly are especially vulnerable to the heat.

If I happen to check in with Channel 13 or Channel 11, they say the same thing. All of them think the hot weather is bad for me because I am old. They warn me to stay indoors where it is cooler.

The Mayor is also worried about me. He had a press conference to let me know it’s hot. He is so worried he has opened up “cooling centers” for me, in case my house is hot, too.

In addition, the Mayor hired a “Robo Telephone Guy” who calls me twice a day to tell me its hot and I am old and I need to stay inside. The Robo Call Guy even insists that I press ONE on my telephone to let The City of Houston know I got the message…..just in case I hadn’t realized its really hot.

He sounds like the male cousin of Siri:

“This is The City of Houston with a heat advisory. Houston is experiencing triple digit heat and you elderly should take precautions.”

Then today, just an hour ago, I got an email from TXU, my energy company, and they are saying how happy they are that I dialed it up a notch. They complimented me on the fact that I keep my house a little warmer than Siberia and, thus, I have helped control energy usage.

I am trying my elderly best to comply with the instructions from Frank and Tim and David and Mayor Turner and TXU. It’s really lovely of them, all of them, to be so concerned. I am grateful they want me to know it is hot in Houston.

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[EDITORIAL NOTE: Reader's stories are welcome. If you have not published here or not recently, please read submission instructions. Only one story per email.]


Duh! Did any of them offer to bring you a cold drink?

It's hot... altho not triple hot... in Raleigh also.

Very funny - I can relate to your satire, Fritzy Dean. It's darned hot in Tucson, too.

I’m in Houston too and can vouch for the veracity of Frank, David, Tim, and Mayor T!!!

People love to point things out -- not necessarily do too much about them, but point out the bloody obvious -- especially to, you know, those of us who are older and may be addled-brained or might have lost our sensitivities. Thanks for transforming one such warning into this humorous story to which many of us can relate.

Thanks for Hot in Houston. It's great to start a day with a big smile !!!

Great story! Once again the ancient adage is reinforced: Everybody talks about the weather, but nobody does anything about it.

Thanks for the chuckle this morning.

For me, I awoke today realizing the air was full of something smelly in a noxious way, and I'm supposedly on the county vector call list when there's a spraying. I've since called them and also the county next to me to enroll in their program as the house is close to the county line. And, you know, air tends to drift over lines and all.

Stay cool all of you in those hot spots!

Well, that was fun! Thanks for the smiles. It's pretty hot here in North Carolina too, they should tell elders to get out and do their gardening and outdoor work first thing in the morning. And drink lots and lots of water. And then go in the house and turn up the AC so that the energy company can make lots of money.

unfortunately, many elderly -- even those with all their marbles -- are no longer sensitive to the heat, so they'll think they are fine -- and bang, down they go with heat stroke. I think all these PSAs are nice, but from my experience, the folks that may need the reminder, think it doesn't apply to them. And you can have too much of a good thing. But all of us old folk should take heed because are personal thermostats might be on the fritz.

But, yay Houston. I am in southwest Florida where we are breaking past temperature records, but no mention/advice for the ‘elderly’. Why not? That’s the majority of us in SW Fl!

Gee, Fritzie, you might not remember, being an old person, that it's really hot.

Isn't this ageism? LOL

Thanks Fritzie for the chuckle! Maybe try not pressing one for the robo call, wonder what that would mean :-)

Advice is not much help. A lower electric bill would be great. Or a super powerful new central air conditioner. Or both. Nothing but crickets when I complain that of course I'm using more electricity than my neighbors. They're all at work in the heat of the day. I'm here all day trying my darnedest to keep the house cool. And still the rates keep going up.

That was fun! They do take care of y’all in Texas. Here in Atlanta, or Hotlanta, it’s also hot, and they tell us not to jog under the noonday sun …

Well, I think you are lucky to have such a caring environment. Here in Woodland CA it hit 105 today, and no one called or emailed ME to let me know to be careful! It is still a kind of "let's hope nobody croaks" approach the way it's been for over 100 years here. I guess it is a reflection of those right-wing Republican attitudes, kind of a Social Darwinism - if you are too senile to stay cool, then you should die. Now, if only they would apply that thinking to the street people who want handouts so they can keep crapping on the sidewalks . . .

Yes, I'm feeling very grumpy today.

Thank you, every one who took time to comment. I am glad I manageded to give some of you a smile. AND I can report-it is STILL Hot In Houston!

You have nailed it again, dear Fritzy. Hating the heat but dreading the forthcoming double H’s: heat and hurricanes. Hopefully we will escape the latter this year.

I had the pleasure of seeing Fritzy present HOT in person at the Ensemble was the end of the year presentations for one of her writing groups. We all loved this one! Kudos Fritzy. Keep writing and making us laugh.

Fritzy, you're still the best. I'm glad you realized it was hot outdoors and perhaps you should stay inside and write some more funny postings. Oh, by the way, it's hot in Sun City West, AZ but not as hot as it's going to be. Summer has just started and we consider June as still part of our Spring! Which is also hot... Another good laugh from my friend Fritzy.

Although I no longer live in Houston, I miss it very much. Well, maybe not the long and very hot summers. I live in Ohio now where we are having unprecedented and unending rain!! The friends I have made here ask me a lot about living in Texas - and usually comment that Texas doesn't have the seasons the northeast enjoys. I always tell them that Texas does have four seasons - January, February, March and summer. No place is perfect, but Texas will always be home.

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