Tag Archives: the divine comedy

San Francisco: the 9th Circle of Hell

san_francisco_cold_winterDante sets out on quite the spectacular journey in The Divine Comedy. His buddy Virgil leads him through the onion-like trappings of the universe beginning with hell and ending in Paradise. He meets a whole pack of interesting characters on the way, and even talks to a girl!

Dante learns a great many things about the metaphysical world, but this blog post is mostly concerned with the temperature of the 9th circle of hell. For those who haven’t read it, this circle is not a fire pit with little devils poking bare-bummed sinners with pitch forks. It’s frozen solid, and at the very epicenter, Satan is frozen mid-waist, eternally munching on Brutus, Cassius, and Judas in his three mouths. It’s pretty gruesome but not unlike what’s going on in San Francisco this winter.

It’s freezing here. I’m talking walk-in freezer temperatures, the kind of environment conducive to housing animal carcasses and supermodels. At night, I wear all my clothes to bed and still wake up shivering. I go to restaurants and find them cold. I go to church and find it worse. At work, I huddle under a shawl like a widow and pray for the winter to end. My productivity suffers. How can I type if I can’t feel my fingers? How can I be a thought leader if my brain synapses are firing at the pace of cooled weed molasses (is that a thing)?

Some of you may be scoffing. Yes, the temperature is a seemingly mild 44 degrees, but San Francisco’s disgusting secret is that it never gets warm. Buildings are made out of Popsicle sticks and pipe-dreams, devoid of any kind of insulation that would make them inhabitable in temperatures below 60. Heaters were installed mostly for stylistic purposes, if at all, and it seems the average business owner doesn’t believe in turning them on for any reason whatsoever.

The chill sinks into the bones and stays there, making its home where once useful body cells now lie shivering against the walls in despair. In this rendition of hell, Satan is the Zynga dog eternally chewing on 3 members of the Big Four.

Dear Lord when will this end? How many techie geeks do we need to sacrifice? How many hippies? We have too many of both! What quantity of kombucha will save us from the never-ending ice? Just say the word and I’ll see if TaskRabbit can get it for You. Please oh please oh please.

Save us.

If you liked this blog post, you might also like: Notes I Took While Watching Your Date, Hi Everyone! I Changed My Profile Picture, or Watching Dogs Crap and Other Joys of Living in the City.

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