Can I haz summer funz?
April 22, 2009 9:42 AM   Subscribe

How can I stop hating the summer, sun, the beach, and people who enjoy these things?

Quick background: nerdy kid, somewhat nerdy parents. Very fair, burned easily. Hair so blond it was white when I was a kid and blue eyes. Horrible swimming lesson experiences. Not a ton of friends. Spend a lot of time indoors, sweating and reading.

Oh yeah and I have a summer birthday so tended not to have school birthday parties, and associated summer with my own, crappy birthday, no cupcakes and not that many kids (if you are a teacher reading this, realize that for kids with summer birthdays you have to give them a birthday party or they will hate you forever).

That leads me to my current problem. I still more or less hate the summer. I don't like the heat (because it's hot and I sweat). The sun drives me crazy. I like clouds and cool places and fog and mist, and I'd really rather be in Canada than Maine right now.

In particular I hate it when I'm walking outside and thinking about how much I wish the sun would go away behind some clouds and how frigin hot it is and then someone tells me "beautiful day, isn't it?" And I'm fake enjoyment of it so that I don't look like a total lunatic.

So I think part of the problem is that I've grown to hate summer so much I have no idea how to make it less objectionable to me. I don't usually wear a hat or sunglasses (stupid, I know). I don't know how to enjoy myself at the beach (I'd rather be inside). I really don't know anything about enjoying myself in hot weather.

So I'm looking for suggestions on
a) understanding why people like really sunny days with no clouds. Because they hurt my eyes and make me sweat and give me a sunburn. So I'm confused (joking aside, I really am confused)
b) suggestions on how to enjoy being out in the sun more (hat/sunglasses suggestions, I guess). I wear somewhat low powered glasses and I'm not sure, would clip ons be just horrible?
c) should I just give up on being at the beach? The water is too cold, the sand is too hot and I'm not that great at just sitting in one place. However it seems like 95% of humanity disagrees with me. Should I give it another try?

Again, this is all serious. I'm freaking out because another one is coming. Help.
posted by sully75 to Sports, Hobbies, & Recreation (57 answers total) 11 users marked this as a favorite
I prefer winter to summer myself. Is that really a huge problem? Some people like to go to the beach on a sunny day; some don't. No big deal. So in response to part c: if you don't like being at the beach, then give up on being at the beach. It's okay, you're allowed!
posted by feathermeat at 9:47 AM on April 22, 2009

You don't have to just sit or swim when you're at the beach. Try flying a kite or going for a walk. You can stick to the wet sand closer to the water if the dry sand is too hot.

I like sunny days partially because everyone is so happy. There's something great about being outside with a bunch of smiley people. Also, I don't burn, which helps.
posted by coppermoss at 9:47 AM on April 22, 2009

Man, summer birthdays rule. I imagine it would suck to have to go to school on your birthday.

My old friend beer always helps keep hot summer days manageabley cool.
posted by solipsophistocracy at 9:48 AM on April 22, 2009 [1 favorite]

You're heritage might hail from colder climates and that's why you don't enjoy the sun and heat as much.

There's nothing wrong with hating summer. I hate it too.

It depends on how important it is for you to "be like everyone else".
posted by royalsong at 9:48 AM on April 22, 2009 [1 favorite]

Not everyone likes crappy heat. I prefer temperatures below 70 degrees. I'm from the northern US. I'm not big on swimming, hate the beach, and hate excessively sunny days.

You're generalizing a little bit about humans.
posted by kldickson at 9:49 AM on April 22, 2009 [1 favorite]

i think you're allowed to hate summer. i hate spring and everyone else loves spring (i hate it because of allergies and inconsistent weather). there are places to go and things to do in the summer that are cool and dark--movies come to mind. that being said, if you want to enjoy being in the sun more, do get a giant straw hat and sunglasses. you could get prescription sunglasses if you don't like the idea of clip-ons. also, sunscreen.

if you don't like the beach, you don't like the beach. people have different preferences. if you do want to learn to appreciate the beach, try it during an early morning or late evening. the sun is a lot less harsh then, the beach is less crowded, and it's an entirely different experience. i grew up pale and nerdy in south florida, and i mostly only attended the beach at night. the beach at night is great.
posted by millipede at 9:50 AM on April 22, 2009 [2 favorites]

I'm not sure how to descibe why I like sunny, summery weather, except to say it's the same reason you hate it - i.e. it reminds me of my childhood and doing fun things outside with friends. However...

they hurt my eyes and make me sweat and give me a sunburn

Those apply to everyone pretty much, myself included. But I wear sun glasses and/or a hat so my eyes are OK, wear t-shirts (lightweight breathable material is way better than cotton if you're sweating) and shorts so I'm not so hot & sweaty, and tend to stay out of the direct sun for prolonged periods (or use sun block if I can't) to avoid sunburn.

I hate the beach too though - no shade, not bothered about swimming in general, much less interested in swimming in the sea (cold, salty, polluted), and not much to do.
posted by EndsOfInvention at 9:51 AM on April 22, 2009

a) There are people who LOVE the summer and HATE clouds and cool places and fog and mist. We're all different. Just embrace that. You don't have to understand it, you just need to accept that people like different things. How boring would the world be if we all liked the same stuff?

b) Get yourself a pair of prescription sunglasses (I read that right, didn't I? You wear glasses regularly?) for sunny days. Don't go out in the middle of the day when it's most hot; go out in the morning and in the evening (excluding, of course, going to work/school). Wear breathable fabrics. Wear skirts if you feel comfortable doing so. That makes a huge difference for me in the summer.

c) If you don't like the beach, why go? I don't like camping so I don't camp. You're not in a 5% minority, I'm sure. I enjoy the beach in very small doses, on cooler days, but you wouldn't see me there all day every day in the summer, just sitting there.

For the record, I hate summer, too. It's hot, it's sticky, I hate it. I live in the midwest where it regularly hits 90F on a "good" day and the humidity is horrible. I just don't go out during the day if I can avoid it. I have kids, so we spend a lot of time at the pool. They swim, I hang out under an umbrella and I read a book. I just count the days until it's over and I can go back to wearing sweaters and socks.
posted by cooker girl at 9:52 AM on April 22, 2009

I am you, and you are me. Here's how I do it:

1. Realize that just as in Winter, I cannot go outside unprepared.

I live in Toronto, and that means cold winters and hot summers. This translates into sunglasses the year-round, because if you think the sun hurts your eyes in summer, trying have it glare back at you from a snow drift. So, that entails at least one pair of prescription sunglasses, for use in summer and winter.

Just as in winter, when i need to carry around mittens and a scarf, in summer I should be prepared to carry around a water bottle and keep my eye out for easy refill spots.

2. Just as in any other season, I am not going to suddenly be sporty -- but....

...I can love the season for other indulgences. Big one: food. Summer brings picnics (with a lovely umbrella or giant tree for shade) and ice cream and fresh fruit from Niagara, and patios with cold beer, and friends' yards with BBQs.

It also means long, leisurely bike rides on Toronto Island, which is as close to the beach as I like to get, and half-assed frisbee in the park with my other non-sporty friends.

Bottomline: As with anything, I try to focus on activities and aspects of the season that are in line with the things I enjoy, and ignore the rest. I have some friends who love summer, and when they go to the beach, I meet them later for some patiotime. The rest of time, I'm with other friends who dig the AC at the movie theatre.
posted by girlpublisher at 9:56 AM on April 22, 2009 [1 favorite]

a lot of people (myself included) like going to the beach on off-peak hours- in the evening, on cloudy days, in the fall or spring. there's less people, it's peaceful, and you see animals (seals!!)
if you divorce the idea of beach from the idea of hot and sunny you might like it better.
posted by genmonster at 9:58 AM on April 22, 2009

I'm a summer hater too, but I love the night.
posted by JoanArkham at 9:59 AM on April 22, 2009

Stop worrying about what "95% of humanity" (which I think you're overstating by a fair margin) thinks and worry about what you think. Some people just don't like hot, sunny weather. I don't like it. I much prefer cool, slightly overcast days, and I can't stand beaches. However, I have plenty of friends who love summer and beaches and we still get along just fine.

As for sunglasses, my husband used to wear clip-on sunglasses on his wire-frame glasses and they looked fine. You can also look into Transitions lenses, which automatically adjust from regular glasses to sunglasses as the sunlight varies. Or you can get prescription sunglasses (which my husband finally did after he lost the glasses that fit the clip-ons). Hats with a brim that shields your face are a good idea, too.
posted by bedhead at 10:00 AM on April 22, 2009

So I think part of the problem is that I've grown to hate summer so much I have no idea how to make it less objectionable to me. I don't usually wear a hat or sunglasses (stupid, I know). I don't know how to enjoy myself at the beach (I'd rather be inside). I really don't know anything about enjoying myself in hot weather.

Well, start by preparing yourself properly to be more comfortable. If you set yourself up to be miserable... you'll be miserable.

Get a hat.
Get sunglasses you'll wear.
Find a sunscreen that you can use (non-greasy or spray on kind might work best.)
Make sure you've got appropriate lightweight clothing - tech-knit tees and underwear will help.

Go out when it's not the hottest part of the day. Find a nice patio with an umbrella to hang out under. Mix up a big pitcher of something ice cold that you love. Read a book.

If someone says "nice day," you can either just say, "isn't it?" and keep going, or make like some friends of mine: "The sun! It burns!" But don't be the grumpy sourpuss who is always proclaiming how much they hate this time of year/blah/blah/blah in response to simple small-talk.
posted by canine epigram at 10:02 AM on April 22, 2009

Many, many people prefer spring and fall to summer. There's no need to be defensive about it, and no one's going to think twice if you say you prefer skiing. (They might comment, but normal people will be fine with you commenting back. "Are you kidding? There's so little daylight in the winter!" "I really like a fire/I'm actually a vampire/I work nights" -- whatever.) People bring it up because it's an easy way to start a pleasant and casual conversation.

As someone with very, very, very sensitive eyes: get extremely dark sunglasses -- UV etc, but it's important to have them very dark, not those weird light browns or greys. They will almost certainly be ugly, because no one wears them. It will feel much better. Get them made prescription.

You don't need to enjoy the beach. I like it. Many of my friends do not. I don't go to the beach with them, I go with people who do like beaches. I do not think less highly of them because of this. If you do want to give it another try -- and if you don't, that's fine -- bring an umbrella, wear something light that blocks the sun, bring a book, a game that uses tiles or writing only (we used to play Rummikub), music, and a lot of water.
posted by jeather at 10:02 AM on April 22, 2009

Hey, I don't like summer, either. I take ski trips in May. My friends think I'm nuts.

I hear you about the beach. I'd say just don't go to the beach, but if you want to give it a try, try to find something to do there that's interesting. I'm learning to surf; YMMV. Frisbee, volleyball, whatever. And re-apply sunblock religiously.

On days that are kind of "regular" hot I try to do things like go to baseball games and sit in the shade, go to the park and sit in the shade, see a movie -- things in that vein. On days that are really ridiculously hot sometimes I just embrace it and do something outside, all day. Last time it was in the 90's I went for a 30-mile bike ride with some friends. I knew it was going to be a day where I got gross and sweaty regardless, so I figured I might as well go all the way. Sometimes that helps. Then you can go home and shower and crank the a/c and at least appreciate the fact that you did something productive instead of sitting around trying not to sweat.
posted by rachelv at 10:05 AM on April 22, 2009

Hey, I hear you. I do love the beach, but I am freakishly fair and burn really easily, I hatehatehate humidity, and long summer days remind me of being bored and lonely during childhood summers. Actually, one reason I *like* the beach is relief from the heat. But I always wear a ton of sunscreen.

I think some of the most pleasant aspects of summer are things that actually minmize the heat and sun: summer blockbusters in air-conditioned theaters, hanging out on the porch during a thunderstorm (yay, cool air!), evening beers on a patio.

FWIW, my favorite season in fall.
posted by lunasol at 10:08 AM on April 22, 2009

This may sound obvious, but if you dislike the beach, don't go. It didn't sound from your post like you were being compelled to go by a spouse/friend/partner - if that's the case, and you don't enjoy the beach, why go at all?

I like sunny days with no clouds because I live in the Pacific Northwest, and we don't get a ton of those kinds of days - so when I get one, I love it because it means I can sit on my deck and read, or I can go for a bike ride with only one layer of clothes on (no wind/rain gear), or whatever, and it's the most liberating feeling in the world after several weeks/months of not being able to do these things because it's rainy or dark. Yesterday it was 80 degrees here, and it was like Christmas - we've had a pretty wet last couple months, and to have a day like that appear out of nowhere was an amazingly cool feeling.

If you live in a climate where sunny days are the norm, you might not have this same enthusiasm for a sunny day, and there's nothing wrong with that.

As for how to enjoy being out in the sun more, I'm as fair-skinned as you from the sound of it, and here's what I do: Hat. Sunglasses. Sunscreen. That's really all you need. If you have the means, spring for a good pair of sunglasses - polarized if possible, but definitely opt for better than the $10 pair you got at Walgreens. Most major sunglass brands offer prescription lenses.

And, if you decide you want to sit outside on a warm day, sit outside but in the shade if possible; sitting and reading/doing nothing in direct sunlight is rarely fun for me, and I like being outside. Find a tree or something to sit under, and you get the benefit of warmth without the annoyance of sun.

I guess the most important bit of advice I can give you is not to worry about what you think society in general thinks/demands as far as how you should live your life. You need to do what makes you happy, and if what makes you happy is spending May to September inside your house/apartment with the AC on and a book in your hand or the TV on or whatever, go for it. It's your life, after all.
posted by pdb at 10:11 AM on April 22, 2009

Why not try associating summer with something you DO enjoy? For example, summer's the season that people associate with vacation; take a vacation. Go somewhere cooler.
I'd really rather be in Canada than Maine right now.
So why not? Make it an annual thing, and you might be able to look forward to summer, not because of the sunburn and crowded beaches, but because you can't wait to go visit [cool and wintery place] again.
posted by specialagentwebb at 10:18 AM on April 22, 2009

A) People can be reminded of the carefree summers of their youth. Those with low body temperatures may enjoy warmth. Many vacations are planned in the summer. There's probably a media bias, too.

B) Lots of sunscreen (UVA/UVB), big floppy hat, breathable clothing, and some UVA/UVB proof glasses. Moving around is perfectly okay. Pick up trash. Build sand castles for small children to smash.

C) If you're fair, or have a photosensitivity disorder (it's not lupus!), it's perfectly okay to hate the beach. Sing Dead Milkmen tunes:

Sand is hurting my tender feet
The air smells like rotting fish and solarcaine
I hate the people on the beach
With their towels and umbrellas
They're so insane
I don't wanna be on the beach! Noooo!

and remind yourself that you are not alone. Free yourself of this "obligation."
posted by adipocere at 10:21 AM on April 22, 2009 [1 favorite]

@pdb: Christmas indeed! Yesterday was awesome!

To the OP: Why do you feel the need to like these things? My personal favorite weather is 60 degrees, brightly overcast, with a strong warm breeze. I enjoy sunny days, sure, but mainly for the activity opportunities they present.

If you truly do want to learn to enjoy the sun though, start incrementally. I am very fair, but even fair people have the necessary physical elements to get a tan. Just start slowly, limiting your exposure. Go do something to meet people outside, anything is more fun with more people and it will increase your enjoyment of a sunny day tenfold.
posted by jellywerker at 10:23 AM on April 22, 2009

Best answer: Another summer-hater here.

I mostly stay inside during the worst of it and take advantage of the longer days and do my outdoors things in the evening.

For me the worst part about summer is being hot at home. I live in Denver where a non-trivial amount of homes and apartments don't have A/C even though it gets into the 90s regularly here. I don't know if you have A/C, but if not, invest in blackout curtains or blinds so when you get home, it's not swelteringly hot. I can bare the summer much more if I know there will be a cool spot for me to rest in. Oh and as many others have said: sunglasses and religious application of sunscreen.

I also take advantage of the amazing culinary opportunities that summer affords. I make homemade lemonade (here's a great recipe); cold asian peanut noodles (i start with this recipe and add what I like; gazpacho; elaborate salads with store-roasted chicken, goat cheese, candied walnuts, bag o salad, fruit and a honey mustard vinaigrette; etc. etc. etc.

I find a little bit of happiness where I can and buckledown until fall mostly. Luckily for both of us, summer will be over soon enough whether we hate it or not :)
posted by Kimberly at 10:28 AM on April 22, 2009 [2 favorites]

Well I love summer, but I don't think I'm all that different from you.

My eyes are super-sensitive to the sun, so I squint uncomfortably if I'm not wearing sunglasses. I wear contacts, so I just wear non-prescription sunglasses but both my parents, who wear glasses always, have prescription sunglasses.

I also sunburn really easily, so I wear sunscreen (and re-apply frequently). I also seek out shade during the hottest parts of the day, so I don't scorch or sweat too much. Even when I was at the beach with friends in high school, I'd be reading with a t-shirt on or a damp towel over my legs while my friends sought the way to get the most sun. I just can't handle as much sun as some of my friends with more pigmentation.

I agree with the posters above who said that if you don't like the beach, don't go (the beach gets crowded enough during the summer!). There are lots of things I like to do that other people don't, and vice versa, and while I'm all for being open to experiences, if you don't like something, why subject yourself to it if you don't have to? However, I know lots of people who don't like the beach that much because they get hot or bored, or who like the beach but only for a few hours, so I don't actually think you're that unusual.

If you do want to try the beach, or just to go along with others who like it, see if you can't limit the time you're there (maybe meeting people late or leaving early?). If the heat bothers you, going before 11 am or after 2 pm is probably best - it can be brutal in the middle of the day, particularly if you're not going into the water. If you get bored sitting in the sun, can you find some shade (natural or man-made) to read a book, talk with a friend, play a game? Or go for a walk along the shore (sand gets hot, but wet sand is cool and, I think, fun to walk in)? I don't know if you encounter lake or ocean beaches, but ocean beaches usually have a good breeze to cool things off.
posted by Caz721 at 10:28 AM on April 22, 2009

Well, I love summer. There is plenty of good advice upthread regarding your second and third questions, so I thought I'd tackle your first. My only contribution to your second question is, I am bald and relatively fair-skinned and I wear a cap and sunscreen at ALL TIMES in the summer - I just put on the sunscreen in the morning with my deodorant.

Abundant sunshine improves my mood. I get depressed when it's cold, gray and gloomy. So, consider that some of the summer-lovers - the seasonal affective crowd - may have big smiles on their faces due to the abundant sunshine and light.

I am bald and otherwise susceptible to cold, and cold weather is MISERABLE for me. I wear one of those wool "took" caps from about October through April. Summer is blissful release from wool caps and other heavy outerwear.

Summer, finally, and perhaps most importantly, is a reprieve from the obligations of the "school year." My church and community commitments are on hiatus. My kids are out of school and in summer camp or at the pool. Summer's when I take my vacation. The reduced obligations are enough to put a smile on my face even on the hottest days! I can get a break and resume my obligations in the fall with a sense of renewed purpose.
posted by cheapskatebay at 10:29 AM on April 22, 2009

If you have a current, up-to-date prescription, any of these online eyeglass retailers can make you a pair of prescription sunglasses for well under $50. Most have a variety of lens tints you can choose from, so you can get a super-dark pair like Jeather recommends.

Another tip is to wear a bandanna soaked in water around your neck. My boyfriend calls it "ghetto air conditioning." You can wipe off your arms and forehead with it, it keeps you cool, and you look like a kicky little cowboy / hipster douchebag.
posted by Juliet Banana at 10:34 AM on April 22, 2009

Like you, summer is something I endure. I too curse the sun when it falls on my face, although a sunny day is certainly nice to look at.

First, there is no requirement to go to the beach. I haven't been for 20 years, and I am happier for it, and less likely to get skin cancer. However, it helps that I am kind of a hermit, so I don't get pressured to go.

I get a certain amount of satisfaction from being (visibly) comfortable when it is cold out, or chilly and damp. I live in New England, so my particular physical adaptation to the climate serves me pretty well, since our summer is relatively short.

My husband uses clip-on shades and they not only work well for him but they actually look fine. Just look around for a pair that matches the shape of your glasses.

I hear you on the "sitting in one place" thing. I was able to go to Utah and have an awesome time in the national parks. It involved a hat, lots of sunscreen, low humidity, and enough physical exertion and beautiful scenery to make me feel like I was accomplishing something. Although now that I have a deck on my house, I have found that sitting under a huge patio umbrella reading a book or taking a nap can actually be really pleasant. The key is the shade.
posted by MsElaineous at 10:40 AM on April 22, 2009

Wow, look at all the summer haters. I'm going to chime in for the opposition here; I don't understand how anybody could hate summer. Of course this might depend on where you live - if I lived a lot closer to the equator I'm pretty sure I'd hate summer too.

I can answer at least one of these questions though.

Sunny days with no clouds = beautiful. The sky = blue, the grass = green, the sand = yellow, etc. Colors are alive and vibrant in a way that they just aren't on cloudy days. I know that sounds a little simple, but it's a huge deal for me.

It's also warm enough to go outside and do things comfortably. Riding bikes, throwing frisbees, everything: not so much fun when you're cold. I associate being outside with being active and healthy, and I associate going outside with sun.

There's also something psychologically satisfying about the sun and clear days. This part I can't totally explain, but cloudy days feel a little claustrophobic - something is blocking the sun? Aagh! Get it away! I think there's a bit of the old skool sun worship thing in play there. Also, as mentioned above - I have good memories of hanging out with friends and siblings in past summers, and it reminds me of these.

I live in a city where winter is 4-6 months of cloud and cold (hello Vancouver!), and if there's ever a sunny day in the winter I strongly consider calling in sick just to get some sun.

The sun does hurt your eyes if you don't see it enough, or if you spend a lot of time in the dark. After aforementioned winter, I have to squint for about the first two weeks of spring before my eyes adjust to light again. Hot weather makes you uncomfortable and sweaty, it sucks. But that's why people like the beach. Yes, the water is too cold (at least in Vancouver) but it's pretty satisfying when you're cooking. Then you're freezing, and coming out onto sand that's too hot is satisfying, in a painful kind of way. It's kind of like life: from one painful experience to another, completely different painful experience :P. Even just lying on the beach, reading, and listening to the sound of the water I find super relaxing.

So, enough of my little paean to summer. Sun = awesome, beach = awesome. For me and many others. If it's not for you, that's fine - just find yourself some similar minded friends and hang out wherever/whenever makes you happy. Don't worry about doing things the way everybody else does them. Relax. You're fine.
posted by bone machine at 10:41 AM on April 22, 2009

I'm from Ireland, so never had much sun as a kid, get bitten by bugs when nobody else does and make Nicole Kidman look dark-skinned. I live in Toronto now though so have ways of enjoying the summer.

I always prepare appropriately with sunglasses, block, etc (girlpublisher has agood answer on that); I often go out after it gets dark and spend the days pottering between garden and house; I do my share of hanging out on deck awnings and under patio umbrellas; and I do urban things like window shop with an ice cream cone and enjoy the various parades and festivals around town rather than go to the beach. Beaches aren't mandatory! I'm married to someone who's a great cook, so we do a lot of barbecueing and reading in the back garden. It's nice.

Also I'm not really a winter person, and TO has winters that seem to last forever, so I just remember how miserable I was getting slush in my shoes in April.
posted by jamesonandwater at 10:47 AM on April 22, 2009

I hate winter. I love summer. Love love love. Bright, warm, sunny days are the best.

I don't have to wear a lot of clothes, no wintery bundling up against the elements or layering, it's pleasant outside, daylight hours last into the late evening, there's all sorts of outdoor activity going on, lots of sweet fruits are in season. Just the most awesome time of year.

When I go to the beach, I never go to lay around in one place. I go for the water. And it IS cold.

At first.

Stay in there a while and you'll acclimate.

Get a good sunscreen (I've seen SPF 90+ in stores now; I regularly use 45 or 60 myself, depending on where I'm putting it). Get sunglasses. A hat might help, but make sure it fits very loosely and is breathable, because people lose heat through their heads, so if that path is blocked, you don't cool off as effectively. What I tend to do is to apply that SPF 60 sunscreen along the scalp at my hair part so it doesn't burn and go hatless.
posted by cmgonzalez at 10:47 AM on April 22, 2009

Best answer: I used to hate being outdoors in the summer when it was really sunny when I was a kid, to the point that sunny days now invoke a weird aversion-type memory/feeling in me. For a time I couldn't quite figure out why that was (I too am very fair, with light eyes, and I had light blond hair as a child--but sunburn, etc. wasn't it...) and why I didn't mind the sun and summer so much as an adult... until I started wearing glasses again on a regular basis (instead of contacts). The glare on glasses suuuucks when the sun is beating down--it's nearly impossible to see and it kind of hurts, and so you're left with a constant feeling of discomfort and blindness until you go into the shade, a feeling that could easily be projected onto anything related to a sunny summer day. It is so very worth it to pay for the anti-glare coating on all of your glasses--it makes a huge difference and it's actually really changed how I feel about sunny days.
posted by penchant at 10:50 AM on April 22, 2009 [2 favorites]

Get Fitovers, or a cheaper version at a drugstore. The wonderful thing about them is, yes, they are great sunglasses, but they also block your eyes from peripheral glare coming from the top, side, or bottom. It is like a cool dark room for your eyes.

And the hat will make it even cooler and darker.

And I use an umbrella.

And a cold cocktail.

posted by Vaike at 10:52 AM on April 22, 2009 [1 favorite]

Best answer: I loooooooove summer and cannot wait, its going to hit 80 this weekend! Hotter the better, sunnier the better, sweat, sweat, sweat.

So even though its clear to me that you are insane, I am going to answer your questions:

a) Sunny days are wonderful because the sun warms me deeply, and makes me see everything clearly, and I feel looser and more comfortable with myself. I have less clothes on. More people are outside. Its easy to exercise and play sports. Ice cream tastes better. Napping on a blanket under a tree in the park is next to godliness. Its easy to get under a tree for shade or go somewhere air conditioned. I am never, ever warm enough in winter.

b) Just always wear a hat, sunglasses, and sunscreen. Its not hard, quality sunscreen is good for your skin, too. You winter lovers tell me to wear a dumb knit hat and gloves and scarf in the winter and I do that without complaining (too much).

c) Definitely give up on the beach. Its overrated and too sandy.
posted by RajahKing at 10:55 AM on April 22, 2009

Best answer: Maybe you have "reverse seasonal affective disorder."
posted by Jaltcoh at 10:57 AM on April 22, 2009

Although I love warm weather and sunshine, I have fair skin and the smell of most sunscreens brings back memories of my dad chasing me around the house when it was time to "butter up."

There are a lot of good suggestions already, but I recommend finding a sunscreen that doesn't smell or feel terrible. I like Aveeno sunscreen - it's creamy and not greasy and doesn't have that horrible chemical smell.
posted by radioamy at 10:59 AM on April 22, 2009

1. Beaches exist in the winter too. Do you hate beaches in the winter? Don't lump everything together.

2. Usually people prefer the beach because it's cooler than the forests and cities that lie inland. They like the beach for the same reason that you hate summer.

3. Don't sit in one place when you go to the beach. Get some frescobol paddles or something.
posted by billtron at 11:09 AM on April 22, 2009

Best answer: I can *so* relate...! I have never been able to tolerate the heat/humidity and I feel very edgy and uncomfortable when I perspire (unless I'm in my icky workout clothes which are loose-fitting and I can peel off immediately when I'm done exercising). I grew up in a house with central air conditioning (fairly unusual for the mid-1960s; my Dad installed the whole system by himself), so in my childhood memories, house = cool comfort, sunny summer days = lethargy, sunburn (I'm blonde and fair, too), sweating, yech. I still got outside and rode my bike and played plenty during summer vacation, just not when the sun was at its zenith.

When I was older and working at my first job, I could never understand all the folks whining about "it's such a beautiful sunny day, I wish I could be at the beach." The beach never held any attraction for me, and if I couldn't be at home in front of the TV, then the air-conditioned office was an OK second choice in my book on such hot days. My co-workers frequently made remarks about my pasty complexion and how I should get out and get some sun. This was in the mid-1970s, when tan was "in" and everyone in the office loudly mocked me when I mentioned that too much sun could eventually make your skin look like leather.(Interestingly enough, some 15 years later, I was diagnosed with Lupus and instructed to avoid the sun. Who knows, maybe prior to diagnosis the sun was already making me feel ill and I didn't realize it.) All I can say to you is that you're not alone in your summer hate, and don't worry about "fitting in" with the sun worshippers. If an overcast autumn day, with grey humped clouds that look like a herd of charing buffalo, and sudden bursts of chilly winds that rattle the brittle leaves like a tambourine energize and envigorate you (as they do me), then embrace and enjoy it.
posted by Oriole Adams at 11:20 AM on April 22, 2009

Folks have pointed out some methods of avoidance, so I thought I'd try a few other things you might want to try in order to actually enjoy the weather and the beach - I am your absolute opposite and crave heat, humidity, sand and water.

for (a) understanding why people like really sunny days with no clouds.

The sun feels good, nay great, on my skin. I like feeling all roasted and warm and I don't tend to sweat buckets except in extreme humidity/heat/exertion so it's not so bad. And when I am in the sun, I like to be near water to play, rinse off the sweat and cool down so I can enjoy the heat some more. (Of course, sun screen, melanoma, etc.)

for (b) suggestions on how to enjoy being out in the sun more.

My fair friends tend to cover up on the beach - those light shirts that are mesh-y and breathable, an oversized button down shirt to cover the arms, etc. - when they're not in the water. For the bottom half, a sarong is light weight and if you're not into actually ~wearing~ it you can use it as a lap blanket. If you're not into hat/sunglasses, maybe try an umbrella? When I'm in Taiwan, a lot of people use umbrellas when walking in the sun to keep the UV off and to just plain stay cooler. If you're sitting on a beach there are beach umbrellas you can set up and wind screens to keep blowing sand off of you. I don't know a thing about clip-ons as I usually insist on wearing contact lenses at the beach.

One major draw to the beach for me is eating and drinking outside (as mentioned above) - bring along a cooler or a backpack with snacktreats you like. Cold fruit on a hot day is heavenly. I'm told that warming sake with hot sand is quite the treat. Even better is an honest to goodness barbeque or grill, but that requires quite a bit more planning.

for (c) should I just give up on being at the beach?

I, as a beach worshipper, say give it another try. Is the problem sitting on a towel and getting gritty? Bring a camping chair and wedge that sucker in the sand. Is it just sitting still? Kites have been suggested and are great. There are also remote controlled cars, sand castle/sculpture building (I'm consistently amazed at how gratifying it is to just dig a hole in the sand...) and walking along the shoreline to cool your feet off, without freezing the rest of you out. Reading has been suggested, but you can always bring a radio/mp3 player for audio entertainment should the sun reflecting off of paper bother you (it does me). Do you paint, draw or take pictures? There are usually things that can catch your eye on a shoreline for inspiration. Are you interested in the things you can find on the shoreline? There are often pretty stones, shells, broken bits of sealife (I'm leaving out syringes, cans, trash, etc. because I'm guessing that's probly not what you're looking for).

In the end, if you don't like it, you don't like it, what can you do? But there are lots of things you can do on the beach before you give up!
posted by oreonax at 11:28 AM on April 22, 2009

I used to be like you. More than once as a child I spent a summer afternoon hiding under a beach towel when I had been dragged to the pool by my parents. But over the past 10-15 years or so, I've grown to enjoy summer more and more. And if I had to give you my top ten reasons why, at least seven of them would be "prescription sunglasses." It's one of those things that seems obvious in retrospect, but I was astounded when I first got a pair and discovered I could be outside, on a bright cloudless day AND see things clearly AND not feel like my retinas were being fried.

It's perfectly OK if you don't like the beach—and so what if you're in a 5% (probably actually larger than that) minority? vive la difference!—but if you want to give it another try (maybe your friends are always going to the beach and inviting you along, and you'd like to be able to hang out with them), then: prescription sunglasses, a stylish hat, prescription sunglasses, good sunblock, and prescription sunglasses. (I don't mean three different pairs of prescription sunglasses, I'm just emphasizing the point: prescription sunglasses.) Bonus: if you're with a group, ask a member of your preferred gender to apply sunblock to your back.

Temperature and time spent outside tend to be a big factor for my enjoyment of the beach. 90°F is too hot for me to be outside at all. At 85°F maybe I'd go out for an hour or so but certainly wouldn't want to be out all afternoon. But different people have different tolerances. If it's a matter of meeting friends and it's only moderately hot, just go for a little while. If you're trying to enjoy the beach more on your own, then you can go whenever the temperature is comfortable to you, and if that's very early or very late summer on the cusps of spring or fall, or very early in the morning or after sunset, then go, and don't worry that there's not many other people there. And there will be a few others there and you won't be totally alone, and I know because that's when I like to go to the beach and when I do there aren't many other people there, but it's not totally empty either.

And if you are there when it's hotter than you like, a lot of people use the too-hot air and sand and the too-cold water to offset each other. When you feel too hot sitting on the beach, go in the water. When you feel too cold swimming, come out. Repeat as necessary. If you're a winter-lover, you may have experienced the pleasure that is an outdoor hot tub with the temperature cranked way up in the winter—this is like the same thing, only in reverse.

and then someone tells me "beautiful day, isn't it?" And I'm fake enjoyment of it so that I don't look like a total lunatic.

If it makes you uncomfortable to say, "yep, sure is" (and I don't think there's anything wrong with saying that even if it's not how you feel) you can disagree, as long as you do it in a light-hearted and non-confrontational way. E.g., "oh, it's a bit warm for me, but my friends all say I'm half-yeti" and not "I hate this weather! It's too hot and I get all sweaty and sunburned!"

As for me, I've found I just love bright sunny days, period. Mild temperatures are better than cold or hot, but a too-cold or too-hot sunny day is better than an overcast but comfortable day, to me. I love bright sunny summer days, bright sunny fall days, bright sunny winter days, and bright sunny spring days. But that bright sunshine does last longer in the summer, so that's one point in favor of summer.
posted by DevilsAdvocate at 11:41 AM on April 22, 2009

I used to really like summer, because I lived in San Francisco, and, Mark Twain's famous quip aside, "hot" in San Francisco means 80 degrees.

Then I moved to an area where the summer temps often reach the triple digits in August. I still like summer, but I hate, hate, HATE those triple-digit temperatures. Sun is good. Outdoors is good. Outdoors in the sun when the mercury hits 105? Just. No. Oh, and did I mention I have severe hot flashes?

I'm also fair-skinned and burn easily. I use high-SPF, spray-on sunscreen (spray-on helps me reach my back and other areas where it's hard to apply). I also have a nifty straw hat which has a straw brim and cotton crown which means my head isn't all itchy and sweaty under the straw.

I drink lots of cold water with those Crystal Light packets mixed in, or iced tea (Tejava is the best if you want the bottled kind). I wear cotton tops and floaty gauze skirts with flip-flops whenever I can - tight, non-breathing clothes will make you feel 100x worse.

A good pair of sunglasses is a godsend and can be a life-saver if you're driving; "sun glare" is a real hazard, especially right at sunrise and sunset.

Finally: If you live in an area like mine where midday temperatures are normally in the 90s and 100s during summer, stay indoors at midday if you can. There's a reason for that quip about mad dogs, Englishmen, and the noonday sun. Triple-digit temps are NOT comfortable for most people. On those kinds of baking-hot days I stay inside from about 11 to 4, with the AC blasting. I run errands, exercise, do whatever outdoor stuff I want or need to, in the morning or evening.
posted by Rosie M. Banks at 11:47 AM on April 22, 2009

With a december birthday, I was always jealous of summer birthdays. Summer birthday kids always had the coolest outdoor parties with watergun fights, and (since we didn't have $ and couldn't do a renting-out-a-rink parties) I always had lame at-home birthday parties.

Summer makes Vitamin D and happiness happen.

Lots of daylight!! Darkness at 5pm depresses me in the winter.

If you hate beaches, try going for a walk on the beach to watch the sunset. Peaceful, beautiful, not as hot, less chance of getting burned. And then hang out there at night.

If you *are* at a beach during the day, sure the water is cold, but it cools you off from that heat that you hate.

Winter and being cold makes me literally ache, so I look forward to hot summer days, I don't care how hot it is and how much I am sweating. This is why a lot of people like summer, it makes them want to be alive and not have to think about whether it's worth it to go outside for 5 minutes only to end up shivering for the next hour even after you get inside.

My company has summer hours so getting out at noon on fridays is like extra weekend time!

Everyone usually has more time and is willing to go out in the summer.

Free outdoor concerts in parks at most towns. Take advantage of that!

Ice cream! I'm 24 and still get yelled at by my mom for having ice cream in the winter, she thinks I'll get sick immediately.

Not having to wear a ton of layers! I hate bulky clothing.

You say you sit inside and read and sweat. Find a nice big tree to sit outside under in the summer and read. With iced coffee. One of my favorite, most relaxing activities.

Sunny days with no clouds means bold bright beautiful colors! It's breathtaking to see how deep the blue is contrasted with one perfect white cloud in the sky, right next to the almost dark green grass, with that bright flower off to the side. Ahh, just thinking about it makes me fall in love with life all over again.

Girls wear skirts and dresses! I can't explain how nice it is to see skin on people (guys and girls, not even in a sexual way at all) for the first time in months instead of sweatshirts.

I can't wait till summer!!
posted by KateHasQuestions at 11:59 AM on April 22, 2009

Could not agree more with the script sunglasses thing. I just got a pair and my whole outlook on summer has changed. There's just something really liberating about it. I can enjoy the sun in a different way now. Not in a squinting, wincing, too much way. Worth every cent.

I would try to focus on those things that can translate well for you no matter what the weather, such as food and reading.

Lots of food just seems to taste better in warmer weather. Maybe you could become a really good grillmaster or learn to make the perfect potato salad. Experiment with cold drinks, learn to make the perfect frozen margarita. Picnicking is my absolute favorite thing to do in the summer, and I hate the rest of it, I'm too hot, sweaty, bugs, etc, but boy do I love to eat. I can overlook a lot of other annoyances if I think I get to have a picnic.

Also, reading at the beach with those script sunglasses makes it a completely different experience. Umbrella or shade, sunscreen, the breeze from the water, a good book, lots of cold water to drink...and food at some point :)

If absolutely nothing else, invest in a pair of prescription sunglasses for this liking summer thing.
posted by Grlnxtdr at 12:14 PM on April 22, 2009

I live in Florida, and I don't go to the beach much at all--when we do it's because there's good pizza on the boardwalk.

Yes, give up on the beach. It's sandy and the water is sticky and showers feel better. Unless you want to go skinny dipping at dusk or dawn, the beach is more pain than gain.

And as someone who grew up without central air conditioing, in Florida, in ninety-plus degree weather, I don't go out in the sun in the afternoon pretty much all summer.

Also, the summer birthday thing; my son's birthday is in June. It's tough on him, because half the time his friends couldn't come since everyone goes on vacation in the summer (ironically, to escape the heat). We have a pool and that helps since just about every kid (and now teen) loves a pool party.

Anyway, one of his teachers also had a birthday in the summer, and so the three weeks before final exams, each Friday, she would have a party for the summer birthdays: June, July and August. Teachers, please consider putting this into place. Not only do you get great classroom snacks (cupcakes every Friday!), but the kids who have summer birthdays will love you.
posted by misha at 12:27 PM on April 22, 2009

I used to love overcast days, and thought Portland would be the best place ever due to the long, gray winters. Then I went to London a few summers ago.

So. Much. Gray. The gray buildings seemed to merge with the gray sky, and the general lack of greenery or vivid colors felt all wrong. Since then, I've appreciated blue skies a lot more. That, and photographing most settings is a lot more interesting with sunlight instead of omnipresent murky light.
posted by filthy light thief at 12:27 PM on April 22, 2009

Another summer-hater here: nerdy, indoorsy, pale-skinned, and overheat very easily. Autumn and winter are my favorite seasons, and like you, I'd rather be in Canada than the USA during the summer.

I accepted long ago that I'm never going to be a sun-worshipper. I'm much, much happier in an air-conditioned library than I ever would be at the beach. I say embrace and enjoy it, and do your best to find other sun-avoiders to hang out with. You need to find friends with whom you don't feel the need to defend your preferences or explain yourself, because they just get it.

When people discover I grew up in Honolulu, HI, they often ask why on earth I would ever choose to leave that sunny "paradise" in favor of moving to a place like Portland, OR (where I live now, and very happily, I might add). When I tell them I love cool, overcast days, as well as rain, fog, and mist - that these things energize me and enliven me, the same way the sun affects them - I get some awfully strange looks of incomprehension. I just blame it on my Nordic blood (I'm half Swedish) and shrug it off.

When you can't avoid being out in the sun, do whatever is necessary to keep yourself as comfortable as possible. Carry a small spray bottle of water and mist yourself, wear hats, put on headbands to absorb sweat, obsessively seek out shade trees - whatever works for you.

And invest in good sunglasses - it's well worth it. I never leave home in the summertime without at least two good pairs of sunglasses - always need a backup, in case one breaks or gets lost - and I have clip-ons for my prescription glasses as well. Makes a big difference for me.

Good luck, and you're not alone!
posted by velvet winter at 12:28 PM on April 22, 2009

i also hate the sun and summer and this weekend it's supposed to be 85 and i'm devastated.

anyway, i also have sun-sensitive eyes and have a glasses prescription. i'm not interested in contacts, so i've investigated prescription sunglasses a lot.

you CAN have zenni optical or whatever make you prescription sunglasses, and tint them super dark. that's what i've done and it's fine. however, the lenses aren't polarized like "real" sunglasses, so i think you're losing some protection from that, but i'm not entirely sure.

also, they now make glasses that come with clipons (polarized) specifically for that frame. they're magnetized and when you slip the clipons on, it's hardly noticable that they're not "real" sunglasses. i loved mine because it's so much easier than changing glasses everytime you go in and out of a place. zenni optical also has this kind of option, though the frame range isn't very wide.
posted by misanthropicsarah at 12:29 PM on April 22, 2009

P.S. Kids with birthdays between Christmas and New Years get even more shafted - Christmas parties ga-lore before "your special day," then everyone leaves for a few weeks. Back to school, everyone has new toys and clothes, and you're a year older, but no one notices.
posted by filthy light thief at 12:29 PM on April 22, 2009 [1 favorite]

I'd really rather be in Canada than Maine right now.

That made me chuckle. I live in Southern Ontario, and while I won't pretend it gets desert hot, it does get very hot, and very, very humid, in the summers.

I love the sun. I love bright sunny days...from the comfort of a shaded porch or balcony or tree. The sun lifts my mood, makes me feel freer and more energetic. I don't mind the rain, or cloudy days, but too much of that in a row depresses my mood. And then a sunny day tangibly lifts my spirits. I'm not sure why, it may be chemical.

Summer brings with it a greater and fresher variety of fruits and vegetables, and the farmer's markets really come alive. I love going in the morning and seeing what was fresh picked and getting local stuff.

I like warm days, so I don't have layers and layers of clothes on. I feel like I can breathe more freely. But I hate humidity. It is the single most miserable part of the summer for me. I can't breathe freely, I feel like I'm drowning in sweat, and everything is sticky. I spend a lot of time in cool, dark, air conditioned spaces not to get away from the sun or even the heat but from the humidity. Its one of the reasons I like the beach - it may be hot, but its not often as humid, and if it is a quick dip in the water fixes things right up, and cools me off as well. As someone else said upthread, the cycle of hot/cold from beach to water and back again can be very refreshing. Sort of a sauna effect I guess. (I always thought that was odd - I'm humid, but a shower or a dip in the pool/lake/ocean will make me feel better - I fix too much water in the air with even greater immersion in water!).

Um, tips for enjoying summer.

If you don't like the beach or sitting around doing nothing in the bright sun, find a nice woods to take a hike in. The trees filter the sun and its cool and hushed and active. But wear longsleeved (lightweight!) shirts and long pants and bring lots of bug repellent.
Sunglasses help a lot. I have two pairs of perscription sunglasses. I keep picking them up on two-for-one sales on my regular glasses and making the non perscription pair my freebie.
Find the shade. Shaded porches, balconies, big spreading trees, beach umbrellas - I really wish parasols were back in fashion. I hate hats. Maybe this summer I'll just carry around an umbrella if its too sunny and damn the odd looks!
Avoid the afternoon. Summer sunrises or sunsets (depending on if you're a mornign person or not) are beautiful, and its generally much cooler and quieter and all around nicer than at noon with the sun glaring directly over head.
Party at night! With paper lanterns and barbeques going and music playing over the crickets.
Discover 'summer' foods and cocktails, different recipes to try and share, things that are delicious and only made during the summer, so you have something to look forward to.
Take full advantage of summer thunderstorms. They are a glory to watch, and afterwards you don't have to shovel anything.
posted by sandraregina at 12:46 PM on April 22, 2009

While I like the summer now, I'm much more of a cool weather person, and get fairly depressed by August. I hated summer when I was growing up, and still get a special thrill on rainy days. When I was growing up, being bookish and introverted was, let's say, not an asset in my house. Every sunny day was met with some horrific tableau featuring t-ball and a bunch of cheery robust kids who weren't afraid of getting hit in the head by the ball.

As a grown up nerd, I think there's a part of me that associates summer with sadness and loneliness. It's less so with each passing year, as I discover gardening! and having a kid at the beach! and hiking with my dog! but I think in addition to the physical crawliness and itchiness and clamminess of summer, there's melancholy that comes from memory, and from your post, it sounds like that might be true for you as well.

So I would say: paving over those childhood memories you mention with new things that you actually enjoy, would be a good idea.
posted by A Terrible Llama at 12:59 PM on April 22, 2009

I'm in Maine too. I like the summer, partly because I am always cold so it is nice for me to feel comfortable. BUT I am also very pale, and I get bored very easily, and I hate the beach.

I do wear dark sunglasses and sunscreen, and then I enjoy sitting in my driveway with a book and reading, weeding, general gardening, sitting outside at the Porthole on a Sunday morning drinking bloody marys, walking around with the dog...

I also enjoy sitting inside and reading with the windows open and a fan on and a good book, lying on the couch, while the curtains blow around, and I periodically look outside and see the blue blue sky...

But I seriously never go to the beach. Summer does not equal beach, even here.

There's also Funtown USA. Seriously. Walk around OOB and check out the speedo-clad Canadians.
posted by miss tea at 1:37 PM on April 22, 2009

Another person here who prefers the seasons in this order: autumn, winter, spring, summer. Most of the places that I've lived have rather humid summers, and as someone with an oily complexion, going around feeling like I have a hot, wet towel on my face is no damn fun. I'm also overweight, so I'm always sweating in the summer. On top of that, I'm too cheap to get the A/C in my car fixed. And I prefer wearing black.

But, you know what? It's perfectly cool (ahem) to not like summer. People are a lot more aware of skin cancer now than they were when I was a kid and we'd burn and peel as a matter of course. It's OK to tell people, when they're bloviating about what a beautiful day it is, and seem to expect you to agree with them, "Actually, I don't like this type of weather--with my complexion, I burn like a motherfucker." Or, ooh ooh, tell them what a beautiful day it is when it's grey and misty! Give 'em a big ol' shit-eating grin. Get it made in the shade--if you don't want to get sand in your crotch, stick to the sort of beaches that have bars with plentiful umbrella-shaded tables. If one of your sun-worshipping friends gives you grief about wearing a wide-brimmed hat and light-colored clothing, frown a little and say, "Um... did you used to have that freckle/mole?" And sunscreen--experiment around with trial sizes until you find one that doesn't feel icky when you put it on.

Oh, and I like clear days because it makes for good cycling. (Although they're not limited to summer by a long shot; I got my first (mild) burn of the year on St. Patrick's Day, believe it or not.)
posted by Halloween Jack at 2:59 PM on April 22, 2009

a) I love summer. I'm always, always cold for the other 3/4 of the year, even when I'm indoors and everyone else is comfortable, so just knowing that I can spend a whole season doing outside things (and inside things, unless people over-aircondition - I hate them) without suffering is delightful. I also don't burn, which is helpful; you've probably spent a lifetime thinking of the warm sun hitting your skin as a bad thing, whereas I've been lucky enough to just enjoy it.
The awesomeness of summer also depends on where you live. Dry heat is so, so much better than wet heat, that may be a factor, it can be 100 degrees in dry heat before I'm uncomfortably warm but humid areas hit the same thing around 80. You also get summer nights, which are just about the nicest thing ever.
Remember, too, that the first hot days will feel the worst, until your body readapts to summer. So though you might freak out sometime around June, you'll probably be doing just fine by July.
b) All the above suggestions for sunglasses and hats and all, but you might also consider a strong antiperspirant such as CertainDry. You'll still sweat from the rest of your body, of course, but if you're nervous about underarm sweat stains those at least can be prevented.
c) Beach is meh, it's got some attractions but it's also the one place where I feel some of the "too bright too hot" reaction you're having to summer in general. I'd take the shade of a big tree with the smell of freshly-cut lawn over the beach any day.
posted by you're a kitty! at 3:57 PM on April 22, 2009

I think the OP and bone machine should trade locations. If you're born to hate summer, move somewhere chillier! I don't think you're going to convert yourself at this point, especially if heat and sunburn really make you suffer. San Francisco sounds up your alley.

I love summer, but I have high heat tolerance and low cold tolerance, so I bitch the way you do in winter the way you do in summer. I hate being in layer upon layer of clothes, and I get bothered by cloudy glare days (astigmatism) a lot more than I do outright sun. I'd rather have the weather be consistently warm all day and night.

I like beaches, but only if the water is warm and the sand isn't scalding. If that's what the beach is like where you live, I don't get why anyone would like it either. Burning your feet or being fridigly wet- neither of those are fun! This is pretty much why I don't go in the water in California (and do in Hawaii) because icy water is not my thing. I don't tend to sit around on the sand that much either.

As for clip-ons, they'll work. I eventually ended up preferring prescription sunglasses though.
posted by jenfullmoon at 4:23 PM on April 22, 2009

Two words: Solar. Shields.

OK, more than two. Be sure you get some that are polarized. I don't know what I'd do without mine.

Also, nthing that it's okay to not like the beach/summer. Bill Hicks ruled, and he hated the beach.

"What's the fuckin' deal with the beach? It's where dirt meets water. I've got a bathtub and an imagination."

posted by nosila at 4:41 PM on April 22, 2009

It could be worse, you could be in Phoenix (if you're not). Do what we do: stay inside all day with the air conditioner on. Park in the shade and crank up the air when you're driving. Eat a ton of ice cream cones. Strawberry. On a sugar cone. Aside from creamy deliciousness, the attitude engendered by the consumption of ice cream on a cone flips an enormous, throbbing middle finger in the face of mean old Mr. Sun. Best to do this while laying in a kiddie pool or something, under a tree. Enjoy (or not, whatever).
posted by Barry B. Palindromer at 4:56 PM on April 22, 2009 [1 favorite]

Oh, and skin cancer phobia is so mid-aughts. Now vitamin D deficiency is what all the cool kids are worrying about.
posted by Barry B. Palindromer at 4:59 PM on April 22, 2009 [1 favorite]

I almost forgot the best part of summer: the ogling. When the women are bundled up with their parkas and two pairs of snowpants, well, you get the idea. I'm sure that's something else you can appreciate about summer, regardless of gender/orientation.
posted by bone machine at 7:36 PM on April 22, 2009

Totally with you on the sun-hurts-my-eyes thing. If I don't wear a hat in summer, even if it's overcast and not sunny, I squint all day and end up with a headache and a bad mood. So, get some hats.
posted by primer_dimer at 7:44 AM on April 23, 2009

Response by poster: Thanks a million for all the tips. I'm going to get a good hat, look into contacts and the sunglasses that go over your real glasses, give up on the beach and accept my summer seasonal affective disorder. I appreciate all your help.
posted by sully75 at 8:37 AM on April 25, 2009 [1 favorite]

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