There are flash floods in the mountains, riptides off the coast, and, in the plains and valleys of Los Angeles, temperatures today are pushing 100, and sure to break it soon—the National Weather Service has issued an Extreme Heat Warming lasting through Thursday at 8 pm, predicting temperatures as high as 108 degrees. It's probably not the apocalypse, but it is a decent dress rehearsal. What can you do? Just relax, try to stay comfortable, and abandon all hope. We're here to help you:
What can I curse for this? Oh, you know, pressure systems, Santa Ana shortages, hurricanes, that kind of thing. The full scientific explanation is here.
Where can I sit in the air conditioning without being hassled? Here is a map of 17 locations throughout the city, all with air conditioning, all free. Many quite pleasant.
Where can I submerge myself in cooling water? The ocean isn't super welcoming right now, on account of those riptides, so stick to pools. Here's our map guide to the awesomest and douchiest pools around Los Angeles, with all the information on getting or sneaking in.
How did old-timey Angelenos deal with this nightmare? They got up to all kinds of classy or scandalous cool-keeping back in the day, although the early 1900s looked extremely stuffy. The Angelenos of 2014 baked cookies on their dashboards and eggs on the sidewalk, and then they Instagrammed it, obvs.
I just want to sit in the air conditioning and look at pools on my computer. Fair. Go here.
I just want to sit in the air conditioning and watch cool videos. Gorgeous drone videos, hilarious street closure PSAs, strange old French documentaries, enormous concrete pours, thousands of balls flowing hypnotically into a reservoir, the Silver Lake apocalypse set to Yo La Tengo: we got you.
I just want to sit in the air conditioning and read something interesting.
— Here's the story of the battle for the soul of Hollywood's legendary Villa Carlotta apartment building.
— Here's what it's like to be a volunteer watching for fires in the Angeles National Forest.
— Here's the strange desert tale behind a surreal drought photo that ran in the New York Times.
— Here's the story of the women who created the Hollywood Bowl, the Greek Theatre, and the Ford Amphitheatre.
— Here's an illustrated history of LA's love affair with castles.
— Here's the story of a dude ranch in Apple Valley that broke race barriers.
— Here's the Santa Monica house that became a salon for European intellectuals between the World Wars.
— Here's an expose of a snooty Santa Monica neighborhood's casually racist listserv.
— Here are photos of the LA River before it was paved in 1938, compared with the same views today.
— Here's a look at the famous Echo Park bungalow that the New York Times once claimed cost $1,250 a month.
— And here is a deep dive into Los Angeles's intimate relationship with cults.
Ok, but where can I watch a bear swimming in a pool? This guy gets it.