What’s worse? To be super cold or super hot?

The Kaohsiung heat is pretty intolerable. You have to change and shower about three times a day just so you don’t stink or ruin your clothing. But every time I start to get sick of it and wish I could climb into my refrigerator, I try to console myself by remembering what it was like to freeze my tits off in the American Northeast growing up. I’ve almost forgotten what true bone-chilling cold feels like. So let’s settle the age-old debate once and for all… which is worse?

  • Sweating like a pig in sweltering heat is worse :sweat: :fire:
  • Freezing your ass off in subzero temperatures is worse :cold_face: :snowflake:

0 voters

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definitely humid hot 30+ conditions are the worst. there are only so many layers you can take off and then you’ll be seen as a pervert if you do so.


AC is cheaper than heating. So that’s why I picked the cold is worse.

I like the feeling of AC in the summer. I don’t like the feeling of heating a house. It’s never 100% right. Sometimes too hot and sometimes it’s still cold. And the house doesn’t heat up uniformly in most cases.


Really? I always thought AC is more expensive to operate.

It also definitely depends on individual constitution and biological sex. Females tend to be colder in general, with lack of fat in core areas.

Funny though, I love the heat, but my wife isn’t crazy about it, but she doesn’t like the cold either.

Not in any of the places that has sub zero temp that I know of.

because those places have central heating and ac is not that heavily depended on, maybe 3-4 months a year.actually it’s quiet uncommon to have central heating and ac. i guess the large majority have ac so they should be more energy-consuming

I’ve lived north of 60 and now in the subtropics. I picked cold because I could put on layers to go for a ride and not have to worry about my head exploding from over heating.

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I’m not sure about the extremes, but I’ve often thought that I definitely prefer being too cold over too hot - I’d prefer to be, say, 10°C below (15°C) room temperature rather than 10°C above (35°C).

I’m definitely not a fan of the humidity in Taipei at this time of year. I also used to live in Nanjing, which I remember had a reputation for being one of the “three furnaces” of the Yangtze River Delta. I think that was the first really humid place I’ve lived/visited, and the winters were pretty brutal too - I don’t think I realised what humidity was before that, and I remember thinking my first winter that the thermometer on my apartment AC must be broken, because this felt way too f-ing cold for 11°C.

I haven’t really experienced sustained cold for a few years now, but I vividly remember a couple of times, like walking around a windy Tiananmen Square in November without a jacket (didn’t have one, and it was cold enough for my phone to shut down even in my pocket) or getting lost on a scooter in the mountains of northern Thailand, where the cold was definitively unpleasant and a shock to the system after so long…so I guess I’m not really a fan of that anymore either. :man_shrugging:


there are definitely a few days in taiwan where everyone would wish for a central heating. but they are so rare, it wouldn’t be feasible. easiest solution, as i did so, put on more clothes.

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I actually bought a jacket last winter for the first time since maybe 2013. Reluctantly, of course, because I’m Northern English, and mostly because my girlfriend works in a clothing company and got a discount. I’ve mostly lived in tropical places and moved around a lot since I left China, so it didn’t seem a worthwhile investment up to now…

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I’ve lived in countries with both extremes for long periods of time - Taiwan with extreme heat for 4 months of the year ( 30C+), and Winnipeg with extreme cold (below -20C) for 4 months of the year (often longer, uggh), and I easily prefer the heat.

For those who are curious, I lived in Taiwan for 8 years on and off, and I spent most of my childhood and University years in Winnipeg, as well as living there now for about 10 years.

On top of the cold temperatures (which are brutal) the cold also comes with snow and darkness - which is a huge problem for the psyche. Along with the frigid temperatures, no green, just white for months at a time is why there is a “snowbird” industry of people going south from Canada for months at a time.

It is one of the big reasons I just cannot live here in Canada long term. Seasonal Affective Disorder is a real thing.


I feel like we get that several times a day in the UK. Sunny, cloudy, high winds and torrential rain all occured within a 15 minute timeframe earlier on today. The temperature swings about like a donkey’s…

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Super hot is worse than super cold, but the knock-on effects of living in a super cold place are probably worse.

I grew up in Canada, but Vancouver, so my experience with real Canadian winters is limited to one year in Kingston Ontario. Plenty of times camping and hiking. No winter camping, but numerous shoulder-season camping trips with morning snow on the ground.

I only recall feeling “Crap, I’m too cold!” (and I couldn’t immediately remedy this with an extra layer) once - tentless, in a sleeping bag on hard ground in mountains in the Sinai Peninsula. It was memorable. Until then, I didn’t even realize I could feel too cold! I’ve felt “Oo, it’s really cold!” many more times, but that’s about the same level as discomfort as the moment I first walk outside in Taipei right now, with “Oo, it’s really hot!”

As for living in Taiwan: “Crap, I’m too hot!” hasn’t yet happened today, but it certainly will within the next few hours. I have definitely felt more discomfort from the heat over the past week - or any given summer week in Taiwan - than I have in my life from the cold.

Posting this presumably means it is now my karmic fate to die of hypothermia.

Caveat: my internal thermostat may be out of whack. University roommates were often bewildered by how my window would be wide open in the middle of winter.

Oh, and while I’m apparently OK with cold, I am NOT OK with the darkness of northern latitudes. What @Noel describes above - the almost paradoxical claustrophobia of a prairie winter - would drive me insane. Not so much because of the cold, but because I’d be mostly stuck inside, and not seeing any green or enough sunlight. I was once acclimatized to the darkness of a Vancouver winter, but I’ve been there for one winter month in the past twenty years, and I hated it.


I like too many outdoor activities. I’m not good in the heat (short temper and a bit pissed off all the time), but my job is indoors in a cool office and I crank up the AC at home. I can’t imagine not being to go to the beach, go swimming outdoors, go cycling, etc., and the gym could never replace that. I also just like being outdoors (enjoying a beer at a restaurant by the ocean, for example), and going to Baishawan, Green Island, and other places.


Every so often I despair at the fact that I live in friggin’ Danshui - perhaps the most famous waterfront stretch in Taiwan! - and yet I know of nowhere that has all three of 1) good view, 2) good beer, 3) comfortable seats to linger with a book.


I’m happy just sitting there with a beer in my hand and looking at the water. And that sunset at Danshui! I would probably just find a place on the ground to sit with my beer. Probably not the best for reading, though.

I keep toying with the idea of buying myself a folding camping chair - one with a beer can holder, of course! - and plonking myself down under one of the trees, beer courtesy of a nearby 7-11.


They sell them at Costco. No beer can holder though. Very light with a case and shoulder strap. We have two for the beach. They also sell umbrellas that can be screwed into the ground (why not?).

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I’m from Minnesota and can definitely say that I prefer being hot over being cold. Usually there is a week at the end of Jan / early Feb that gets wind chills down into the -30C / -40C range that just causes you to think “why the f**k do I live here” over and over again as each breath burns the lungs and your eye lashes and nostril hairs freeze together.

I haven’t quite had that experience with the Taiwanese heat yet – During the summer I get to the internal joking stage of “it is hotttt” but not quite to the defeated self-loathing stage of wanting to move somewhere else.

I think it’s due to my body type though, as I’ll start shivering in the house at 18C while the rest of my MN family is completely fine in short sleeves and pants.