Even though I haven't given up my cynical nature, I do think it's important to focus on the positives in life in order to maintain one's sanity. Ergo, I've forced myself to compile a short list of reasons as to why summer may not suck completely.
1) Catching up on news, books, shows, movies, music, etc.
I love the books I get to read for school (hello, English major), but I also love spending my summer catching up on books I either feel I should have read by now or books that I just really want to pollute my mind with. During the school year, I feel an overwhelming sense of guilt if I'm doing anything other than homework or studying. (Cue me on the elliptical reading Victorian poetry.) I remember my summers by not only the people I spend them with, but by the books I read. One of the best summers I've endured involved Sex, Drugs, and Cocoa Puffs (summer '07), which remains my all-time favorite thing to read. What you're reading, watching or listening to shapes your mood or mindset, so in order to keep a summer sunny, I recommend exploring lighthearted options (summer '09) in addition to the grimmer but necessary reads (summer '08).
Are you one of the 95 people (I actually don't know that many people) who has told me you want to watch 30 Rock but you just haven't? Hey, summer is perfect for that kind of thing! Also, catching up on old films is an honorable activity.
If it weren't for summer, I probably wouldn't have had the time to listen to Taylor Swift's Fearless album in its entirety. No wonder everyone likes her. Of course, realizing how much you can relate to her songs may or not result in a feeling of "Oh, crap, I am a 19-year-old girl."
2) It's SO easy to get ready.
Dress, sandals, done. Doing hair and anything more than minimal makeup is pointless when you're going to the beach and spending the evening in a movie theater. I know there are others out there who get really excited by the idea of spending the entire day in your swimsuit (uh, my swimsuit; I just really like it) It's oddly exhilarating.
3) Swimming laps
Speaking of exhilaration, my favorite exercise is absolutely swimming laps back in forth in my little pool at home. Only at night. It is one of the best activities you can do when trying to work something out in your mind. Listening to the Glee version of "Total Eclipse of the Heart" is optional, but it certainly sets the moody, yearning tone of a typical summer night.
4) Those things that involve other people
There are some activities that just don't feel the same when it's not summer, such as driving around at night, spending the day at the beach, sharing a container of strawberries and exploring a new place. It's a lot easier to do these things when you don't have to worry about staying up all night cramming. ("Was she at the professor's again last night?" "Yes, but she claims she was up all night cramming." "Well, she was." "Oh, ick!")
5) Wet 'n' Wild
Some people don't have "water park personalities" (I'm talking to you, J. Tes.) Once you get past the long lines and dry your tears after realizing that Crocs are still around, this Phoenix water park can be pretty freaking fun. It's clean, conveniently located and the perfect place to go to act 10 years old. Taking a best friend is a good idea, or else those long wait times may be a little awkward.
(Not that I've ever been against awkwardness.)