Elaine Benes used to date David Puddy on the show Seinfeld. He claimed to be a Christian -- sporting a fish symbol on his car, tuning his radio to Christian stations and the like -- but encouraged his girlfriend to do sinful things on his behalf like steal the neighbor's Sunday paper. As per Elaine's character, she got angry and started complaining that he didn't care that she was going to hell. She described her plight saying, "I'm going to hell, the worst place on Earth, with the ragged clothes and the heat, my God, the heat!"
We wonder if Elaine has been to Texas.
The summer of death in Houston continued over the last few days with record-breaking temperatures over 100 degrees, something that almost never happens in September. In fact, it has never been this hot this late in the year in our fair city, at least not since they've kept records of such things. Our summer has set records for high temperatures, numbers of days over 100 degrees, drought, famine and pestilence. That might be overstating, but it sure doesn't feel like it. The question now is: Is relief anywhere in sight?
Short answer: Yes, with a but.
Yes, it will get cooler, but "cool" depends on your definition. In the short term, temperatures should return to the lower 90s by the end of this week and into the weekend. If you want actual autumn temperatures -- Houston autumn, anyway -- you're going to have to wait another two to three weeks.
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Forecasters are calling for continued warm conditions through the last week of September when the season's first legit cold front should make it through the region, dropping afternoon highs into the mid 80s. The last time we were so happy to see the 80s, we were stumbling out of a punk club knife fight on New Year's Eve in 1979.
Beyond that, as the days get shorter, we'll start to enter our normally lovely fall weather pattern. Unfortunately, the dry conditions will probably continue as the weather pattern referred to as La Niña sets in. La Niña, a weather phenomenon over the Pacific Ocean, generally spells warmer-than-average temperatures and lower-than-average rainfall totals for winters in Texas, just what we needed.
We might see a little rain with the cold front in a couple weeks and as that hideous high pressure system that has been stifling us all summer finally moves south into Mexico, but it won't be much.
So, keep those devil horns handy for a couple more weeks as we round out the summer of hell.