For the month of July, the average high temperature in Chicago is 83.5. So far this year (2010), the average high temp in July is closer to 87. The average last summer was about 80 degrees - one of the coolest July's on record, and certainly part of the reason this month has felt so darn hot!
Last year, I didn't put the air conditioner on once all summer. But last night I slept with the A/C on all night! The combination of heat and humidity was more than I could stand, but 76 degrees sure hit the spot! I think 2005 was the last summer that seemed this hot.
If there is anything to this Global Warming/Climate Change thing (and I believe there is), then these hot summers will become more frequent. That's the point of the two maps at the top of the page - the one on the right shows average temperatures for the eastern US today, and the one on the left shows what they could be in 2050. The take home message is that average temps are predicted to be much higher almost everywhere.
So, our area would be more like southern Missouri? And Northern Wisconsin would be like Central Illinois? And Florida would be mostly under water? Cripes! So in another 40 years, all those Midwestern snowbirds will just stay right here? Sounds like Sun City will need to expand!