When I was in high school, I had a friend who told me he wanted to experience all that life had to offer, not just the transcendently good but also the deeply terrible. Why would you wish yourself pain, I asked? (Probably it came out as something closer to, What? No you don’t.) He replied that he thought it would give him perspective (which, maybe), and that it was important to know and feel as much as you could.
This is a person I still like to this day, but then as now, I found this a dubious pronouncement. Only people who have not—and probably will not—experience the worst life has to offer wish for that kind of thing. I’m not saying pain won’t come for all of us, or that some of it won’t be, in some sense, exquisite pain. But wishing to be sad is such a Sad Young Literary Man thing to do, or as we would have put it then, emo.
(I was not totally immune to this disorder myself; I don’t want to suffer, but I do sometimes like to cry. Catharsis through music or art is an important part of my life, and perhaps in some sense that’s borrowing trouble too, but it feels less perverse to me.)
(It would though. I am biased towards me.)
All this is just to say, this whole week the temperature in Tucson is going to be hitting highs of 111-113 degrees; last night at 7:30pm it was still 106; maybe this is one daring form of dangerous life and rich experience, but; everyone who has ever told me that I’m lucky it’s just “a dry heat” is hereby invited to try it their own damn selves.