Now is the time of year when my brain slows to an absolute crawl. I’m trying to write an overdue piece on a topic I adore–a topic I campaigned to cover, for heaven’s sake–and all I can think about is ocean breezes, porch swings, fresh corn, snapdragons, sugar snap peas, glasses of rosé, a book beneath a tree, tan limbs wrapped around my own. If in winter I prefer to hibernate, in summer I only wish to sprawl–Mama Nature is producing such glorious bounty that it seems disrespectful to compete. Yet deadlines loom and, ever the freelancer with a case of the Cassandras, I feel compelled to take all the assignments I can, especially as it’s work I am lucky to do. (Remember your ancestors’ struggles, chants something deep in my blood.) Yes, this concrete jungle boils over; yes, my temper threatens to do the same. But somebody’s gotta buy that premium permakitten food and I’m the only member of my household with opposable thumbs.