Sam Venable 

Department of Irony

August is the Ideal Month for ProcrastinatorsHere are a few of the things I associate with August: Heat, humidity, sweat, bugs, thunderstorms, weeds.

Given that bleak lineup, it’s natural to assume August is my least-favorite page of the calendar, right?

Heavens, no!

August ranks close to the top. That’s because August — like favored-status November and May — is a transitional month, a blend of old and new.

Summer certainly isn’t over. Autumn certainly isn’t here. It’s just, well, August. And the livin’ sho’ is easy.

Yes, August can be hot as a blowtorch, sticky as Gorilla tape, sweatier than a sauna.

It can deliver mosquitoes, horseflies, yellowjackets, ticks,
chiggers and other vile creepy-
crawlies in swarms that rival a biblical plague.

Abrupt lightning, wind and torrents of rain always are possible—at noon or midnight and all points between.

And even the Kelly-greenest of spring lawns can mutate into a crabgrass jungle right before your eyes.

So? Ain’t no biggie.

In August, you can play any cards Mother Nature deals because you know the game isn’t over. Don’t fold, just keep bluffing a little longer. The jackpot awaits.

There’s no rush about August. It lets us mark time — or tread water in a pool, stream or lake, as the case may more accurately be.

August is a procrastinator’s dream. Trust the Crown Prince of Procrastination.

Whatever you were supposed to do, but didn’t, in June and July is ancient history now and doesn’t matter.

Conversely, September and October are well into the future—much too distant to fret about what you’re supposed to do, and probably won’t, when they finally arrive.

If I were commissioned to draw the official seal and motto of August, I’d be tempted to heist the image of the late, great Mad magazine’s Alfred E. Neuman and his signature “What, Me Worry?” logo. Instead, a simple sketch of shrugged shoulders overlain with “Meh! Pfft!” would suffice.

Well, yes; to be truly official, “Meh! Pfft!” should be spelled in Latin. That’s something I need to look up in a Latin-English dictionary. I’ll get around to it sometime. No need to break a sweat right now.

In fact, I’m going to cease typing. It’s 10:15 p.m., the perfect quitting time for an evening writer, a time that bears a parallel theme with August: Too late to keep chiseling, too early for bed. It is the perfect time to pour a taste of old vine red and repair to the screened breezeway to enjoy my nightly concert of a billion katydids singing in unison and a handful of tree frogs performing individually.

I’ll never tire of this music. It always reminds me of August.

Sam Venable is an author, comedic entertainer, and humor columnist for the Knoxville (TN) News Sentinel. His latest book is
“The Joke’s on YOU! (All I Did Was Clean Out My Files).” He may be reached at