Dog Days of Summer

The ancient Romans coined the phrase “dog days” based on the period that the brightest star (Sirius, the Dog Star) rose and set in conjunction with the sun. The Romans believed that Sirius radiated heat back to Earth, causing the hottest part of the year as it traveled with the sun.

The “dog days” dates vary based on the source. The Old Farmers’ Almanac refers to the 40-day period that begins July 3 and ends Aug. 11. The 1552 Book of Common Prayer refers to the period from July 6 to Aug. 17. Many references extend the “dog days” period into September.

The dog days are popularly believed to be a time of agitation and unruly behavior. In the South, where I am, the weather is hot, stifling and incredibly humid. It’s an effort to do anything outdoors that requires physical effort.

In politics, with fewer than 100 days to the midterm elections, political agitation is appearing everywhere. There are protests over the Supreme Court overturning Roe v. Wade. Crime is high in many cities, and high inflation is making it harder for families to make ends meet. Additionally, after the Bureau of Labor Statistics released a second quarter of figures

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