Summer in Tucson means one thing for me, and it’s not the NBA playoffs. (Frankly, since Malone quit the Jazz and Stockton retired, I just can’t get excited for the playoffs any longer. I can’t help it. I was born and raised in Utah, and it was all we had.)

Rather, summer means ongoing combat with the steel roof-mounted beast that is the Mastercool. I don my roof sandals and my floppy hat, equip myself with wrenches, pliers, and a bucket of spare parts, and climb the ladder to the roof. There the Mastercool awaits, beckoning me to crawl underneath for battle. Last summer was epic; I spent days there, camped on the roof, fighting with the Mastercool as Galdalf fought the Balrog until I finally smote its waste upon the mountain, er, rooftop. All in the name of evaporative cooling.

But today was different. It took only a modicum of standard and non-innovative profanity, one hour, and a single minor mishap with the wet patch roof cement (seals cracks even underwater!, and sticks like mad to the hair on the back of my arm) to start up the cooler. There will of course be adjustments: The drain needs cleaning and the copper joint at the valve is just a bit leaky. But tonight, at least, all is calm, and our little house is cool and comfortable.