In August, cool is not just "in." It's essential. Though trendies claim that all the really cool people flock to The Hamptons or The Vineyard each summer, those of us stuck in Sweat City know that--with a little creativity--it's possible to be cool right here in D.C.

To help you keep your cool this month, we'll offer a daily "cooler" idea: Like sticking your underwear in the freezer. Or listening to Vivaldi's "Winter Concerto," or loading a squirt gun with chilled champagne and shooting hot friends in the face. You get the idea.

For starters, consider lawn sprinklers. You may think they are just for little squirts. But why should kids have all the fun, especially now that sprinklers aren't limited to the dreary old back-and-forth variety. Among the hottest hose-downs on the market:

* Fun Fountain by Wham-O: Attach this clown to a hose, turn on the water and the funny hat rises up to 8 feet and sprays water all around. About $18.

* Snoopy 'n Woodstock Splash 'n Play by Hasbro: The Peanuts characters run circles around each other while the gizmo shoots water up to 20 feet in the air. About $20.

* Willy Waterbug by Wham-O: Sprays water through eight antennae. About $10.

* McBath, the Sea Slurpent by Hasbro: Fill the tub with cold water and watch this little monster do tricks and play tunes. About $15.