Dear British People, Here’s A Helpful South Asian Guide To Battling Heatwaves
Maybe after centuries upon centuries of hearing kings and queens and colonial invaders brag about how the Sun never sets on the British Empire, the Sun decided to prove them right...a bit too aggressively.
One would think more than 200 years of colonial rule would have prepared the British on how to deal with hotter temperatures than the usual rain and gloom of England, but our Twitter timelines have us convinced otherwise. A heatwave has happened upon the hapless people of the good old UK, and oh boy were they not ready. Maybe after centuries upon centuries of hearing kings and queens and colonial invaders brag about how the Sun never sets on the British Empire, the Sun decided to prove them right…a bit too aggressively.
But take it from Pakistan, a country that experiences terrible heatwaves every single year —sometimes even multiple times a year— there are ways to mitigate it, and quite possibly, learn to live with it. And because Pakistanis, true to our kind, colonized nature, love to help out, we’ve got some very helpful suggestions for the wonderful folk over in the UK. Dear British people, here’s our guide to battling cruel heatwaves:
Acknowledge the sins of your ancestors who put nearly half the world, but especially South Asians through the terrible bother of colonization in 40-degree weather
Listen, we’re sure being an imperial power is hard and all, but imagine the peril of the locals? We get an outrageously hot summer and a fraudulent trading company that’s trying to take over our nation? In this heat? Oh, come on. We think it’s crucial for you to recognize that you put us through a lot of hell, in temperatures very reminiscent of hell, and maybe, just maybe, this is karma?
Maybe give those spices that you wanted to trade so badly that you colonized an entire nation for 200-300 years a shot?
The reason why a lot of hotter countries eat food that is also hotter and spicier, is because spicy food makes you sweat, which in turn cools you down. So really, this is a scientific suggestion, and not at all a ploy for revenge and a desire to see you suffer. We wouldn’t, really.
Consider returning stolen artifacts from former colonies that are just consuming so much electricity in your museums
I know a lot of those things are very pretty and it feels so nice and important to own them, but basically everyone agrees that it’s time to give them back now. Think about it, you’ll save so much electrical energy from having a smaller museum collection that doesn’t require as big a showroom. And you can use all that conserved energy and install more AC units and turn on more fans. It’s a win win.
Give reparations to former colonies, and the wronged nations will forgive you and karma will come to your aid
What you need right now, England, is a Hail Mary pass. Anything that could work, you should try. And surely while the suffering and chaos that you’ve left behind isn’t enough to make you give reparations, maybe the sweltering heat of a heatwave will make you consider it. Who knows, once you’ve righted your wrongs, perhaps karma will decide to go easy on you?
Consider colonizing a colder place, maybe just move to Antartica?
Seeing as how nearly every former British colony experiences warmer temperatures than those found in England, perhaps the Universe thought you really reallyneeded the warmth? Maybe it’s time to set things right and colonize a place that’s colder than England. Antarctica seems like it could be a good option; it’s always cold, there aren’t a lot of people to subjugate, torment and subject to generational trauma. Although it is a point to consider that the glaciers in Antarctica are melting, perhaps out of anticipation of the arrival of the British. Honestly, who can blame them?
Khadija Muzaffar is the culture editor at The Friday Times. Previously a Fulbright scholar at NYU, she enjoys writing about society, culture, music and food. She tweets at @khadijamuzaffar, but is far more interesting on Instagram.