“The Annual Trashing of Summer” by M. Carrigan

At the beginning of each season, I am full of ambition. I will tackle the season like a massive house renovation. I will mold it somehow, contain it. I will save it, because perfection is worth saving, and I am terrified I’m trashing so much.

I will design the summer as effortlessly as they do these things on HGTV.  I imagine starting the mornings with French press coffee and a plate of danishes arranged like a children’s choir, each one so deserving, angelic, heavenly, buttery. We’ll see animals at the zoo, see fireworks from rooftops, take the kids hiking. They’ll have matching water bottles. We’ll eat salads frumpled up like geometrical shapes and charred alongside the slices of pineapple on the grill. We’re beautiful, we’re human, and we grill fruit.

Each day will stand alone, a smooth stone grouted onto the aquamarine backsplash that I learned how to do from HGTV. I’ll make zesty lemon wreaths, also learned, to affix to my door and welcome the season, the summer, the sun.

The reality is, I get washed away in the ocean of it. A trip to the beach, the ice cream outings, setting up the sprinkler in the backyard for the kids, the pool birthday parties, lazing in front of the TV and soaking up the air conditioning. They continuously meld together until one day, it’s late August, and school is about to start. Summer, amorphously.

I failed to contain it, yet again. It felt too good in the moment to float away into that ocean. Besides, I don’t know how to grout. I aspire to grand home renovations and end up at the thrift store, collecting back the things that others have trashed.

Bio: Alter-ego of blog The Surfing Pizza, editor grande supreme of Taco Bell Quarterly, party person, original owner of Spuds MacKenzie, enjoys staring at sun.

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