On average, said senior government climatologist David Phillips, Toronto gets four 30-plus days every August; this year, we appear to be getting two of them in the month's first two days.
With yesterday's scorching mid-afternoon sun glaring down at him, Gord Munro did something he didn't want to have to do.

"I'm boiling, guy," said Munro, 19, after he dunked his head in a Dundas Square water fountain. "It doesn't even look clean, but I did it anyway."

On a day when the temperature reached 32C (89.6F) - 38 with the humidex - and the City of Toronto issued a heat alert, Munro was one of the lucky ones.

He could, after all, have been Harbourfront camp counsellor Jamil Jivani, 19, who had dozens of sweaty 6 to 12-year-olds to appease. He could have been Mohammed Aaver, 62, who tried to do his job as a Harbourfront parking attendant while also standing under a tree. He could have been Ivan Portillo, 29, who had to work 12 hours ushering vehicles in and out of a construction site at Bay and Harbour Sts.

Or, horror of horrors, he could have been David Kerr.

Kerr, 30, is Canadian Idol's "roving reporter." An Idol fan - a sadistic Idol fan? - "double-dog-dared" him to dress in a bear costume, stand at Yonge and Dundas Sts., and play the show's theme song on a kazoo. Ignoring the city's health warnings - which, after all, said nothing about wearing rented bear suits - Kerr decided to complete his task yesterday.

"We brought many bottles of water," he said, bear head in hand. "Because I thought there was a serious chance of passing out."

It was a day only a free-juice-hander-outer could love. At least one person had fun yesterday: Stephanie Gaubin, 20, who distributes Happy Planet juices to grateful passersby downtown.

"Oh my God, did they ever go fast," Gaubin said. "People are like, 'We're riding our bikes! It's too hot! Give us some!'"

For camp counsellor Jivani, that means more futile attempts to entertain his charges indoors. "They get all crazy in there," he said.

For construction worker Portillo, who began a conversation on the weather with a shake of his head and an expletive, it means more water.

Phillips is cheerful, though. It's hot, he argues, but it's normal and, for temperatures so high, our air quality is unusually good.

"The summer's not over," he said. "We always say summer's from June 1 until Labour Day. Well, we still have a third."

Happy news - until it isn't.