It’s thundering as I begin to write this post and I wish so ardently for some showers to break the maddening monotony of today’s heat and humidity. I wouldn’t have cooked at all—much less turn on the oven to 400F—if I weren’t worried that the livers marinating in the fridge would have gone to waste unless cooked pronto. Alex planned on making risotto and we could have had that and nothing else. But who wants to waste good chicken livers? So, I made the bacon-wrapped chicken livers. They were good. But I couldn’t eat much. In the heat, my appetite had gone on vacation without me.
For those of you who don’t cook but expect meals to be served regularly despite the killer summer heat, give the cook more credit that usual. It’s not easy. Unless you’re rich enough to have an air-conditioned kitchen (over 95% of the population in the Philippines can’t afford that), just shut your trap and eat whatever is served on the table. And SHOW APPRECIATION. Otherwise, you might be courting domestic violence. Start complaining and an already irritable cook might slice you with a kitchen knife.
I’m not joking. There have been a lot of studies aimed at quantifying the relation between hot weather and violent crimes. The operative word, of course, is “quantifying” because for those of us who live near the equator, we are already aware how hot weather affects everyone’s behavior. Back in the 1990’s when the Philippines was reeling from 12-to-16-hours a day of brown-out, those who could afford generators starting buying up. Back then, generators were pricier and a lot noisier. A news report relayed how a row started when some guy, already hot-headed from the summer heat, confronted a neighbor over the noise that the latter’s generator was making. The row escalated and ended with one of the two getting killed.
And it’s not just around the equatorial regions where hot weather has been associated with a rise in violent crimes. It’s true in Chicago too, for instance, although there are arguments that it isn’t the heat per se that leads to more crimes. Rather, there are more opportunities for more crimes to be committed because people, in trying to escape the heat indoors, spend more time outdoors. More people on the streets means more criminals are attracted and, ergo, more crimes are committed.
But for people with already aggressive tendencies, heat plays a role and that includes how the aggressiveness can lead to violence inside the home.
So, if you’re a hot-tempered cook, you might want to give those knives a rest until the weather is friendlier. There’s always the phone and a dozen establishments are more than willing to deliver cooked food to your doorstep. It might be pricier than cooking a meal but the few extra bills spent may be the key to prevent harm and injury.
P.S. It’s showering as I finish writing this post and the indoor temperature has dropped to 28C. Great! I think I can manage to cook dinner.