100 Degrees in the Shade

100 Degrees We’ve hit the 100 degree mark.

Granted, my office is air conditioned to a quite comfortable 74 degrees and I only have to step outside occasionally to let the dogs out, check the mail, and the like. But it’s still mighty hot.

While Virginia is unquestionably part of the South, the Washington DC suburbs of Northern Virginia, where I live, haven’t been culturally southern for years. You can’t even get sweet tea in restaurants, for Pete’s sake. But the summer weather remains quite southern.

UPDATE: We’ve apparently set a record:

While severe storms flooded New York City subways, delayed flights and spawned a possible tornado in Brooklyn, Washington-area residents today continued to languish from oppressive heat and humidity. Temperatures hit 102 at Reagan National Airport at 1 p.m., breaking a nearly 80-year-old record by one degree.


Temperatures were recorded as soaring also at the other major area airports. At Baltimore-Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport, the temperature hit 100, breaking the 1980 record of 99. At Dulles International Airport, it hit 99.

It could be worse, I guess:

The 1930 heat wave was the cause of what The Washington Post called “unusual happenings”:

  • A woman living in an apartment on 10th Street NW shot and killed her husband when he refused to give her money for food. She blamed the heat. The morning she pulled the trigger, temperatures in the couple’s apartment had reached 110 degrees, she told police.
  • Chickens that had been entered in an egg-laying contest at the University of Maryland Experiment Station were listless. Yields were disappointing.
  • A 16-year-old Virginia hunter collapsed after being overcome by heat and shot himself in the head with a .22 caliber rifle. The ball knocked him out but only inflicted a scalp wound, The Post reported.
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James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm veteran. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.


  1. Bithead says:

    Sweet tea, huh?

    McD’s has been fferng that around here since the start of summer. Since you seem to know something of it outside that place, have you had the McD offering and what do you think of it?

    86 and humid, here, by the way. Was hotter, yesterday.

  2. It is doing the 100 degree routine down here as well. And my word, but it has been humid.

  3. David Harris says:

    Dr. Joyner, I’ll be visiting DC for a week in September. I live in Atlanta. Are you saying the weather will be pretty similar next month up there? That’s good to know.

  4. John Burgess says:

    DC has been hotter this summer than the SW Florida Gulf Coast. Here, the highs have maxed out in the mid-90s. Humidity, of course, is also in the mid-90% range a lot of the time.

    I only keep my place at a mild 83° though. I mostly appreciate the AC for its dehumidifying effect.

  5. James Joyner says:

    Bithead: I try to avoid McDonald’s as much as possible, to be honest.

    Steven: Doesn’t surprise me one bit.

    DH: It’s supposed to cool down later in the week. We’re definitely way above normal.

    JB: Were it up to me, I’d probably keep it around 80-82 during the day and 75 or so at night. Alas, my wife prefers semi-Arctic conditions.