Monday, June 09, 2008

In response to the heat wave we are experiencing in the Northeast

For as long as I've been responsible for my own heating and cooling situation, it has become increasingly clear to me that the way to my heart is an air conditioning unit. If someone is brave enough to ask for my undying affection (I have had more successful relationships with tax collectors), instead of promising me years of happiness and well-behaved children, they may have better luck promising to keep me in air-conditioned living environments for the rest of my life. Why stop there? Give the casket central air; don’t risk years of me haunting you, reminding you that this was a promise made for eternity. Though this may seem overly simplistic, after pulling the turkey sandwich I’d made out of the freezer because the bread was starting to melt, I decided that my request is a perfectly reasonable one. As evidenced by the week I spent in Singapore recently, during which I spent half the time trying to calculate how long it would take to cook a pizza outside, I have concluded that I’m not a hot climate sort of person. Don’t get me wrong – I love hot days by the pool and the margaritas that accompany them – but I don’t think I’d be happy if I had to give my entire sweater collection to ORT.

One thing I find particularly agreeable about hot weather is that not only does it become acceptable to eat ice cream for every meal, it’s also practical. I find myself adverse to any foods that haven’t come directly from the freezer or are at least 50% water. This makes beer a very respectable option as well.

I begged and pleaded with my only fan after it broke down on the hottest day we've had all year. It had been struggling for quite a while; various strings had been holding it together in several places and it had to be balanced just so so that it didn't tip over and crawl over to you at night and gnaw at your face while you slept. It was really only a matter of time before it decided the world had simply gotten too hot for it and ascended to Vornado heaven. After practical reasoning and even reverse psychology failed to resurrect my fan, I decided to get the hell out of my apartment and into somewhere with a higher concentration of water. I headed to the YMCA to swim and refused to get out of the pool until some old ladies started screaming at me so they could practice their midnight synchronized swimming.

Despite an anxiety directly related to shopping malls, I left the Y to check out the selection of fans at Sears. Now I readily admit that I still have nightmares stemming from my year-long job at Walgreen's, and I am empathetic enough to expect to be hated by retail workers, but they seemed to react to my questions like I had asked them to help me move out of my apartment. Or if they could orate the state capitals to me in reverse alphabetical order. When asked where the fans were located, the incredibly helpful salesman answered “You have to go to that side,” and waved in the direction of the lawnmowers.

“The other side of the store. The side that I just came from.”
“In general.”
“Well thanks for your help, I’ll mention your name at the counter to be sure you make commission.”

Unfortunately it appeared that someone else had noticed the bit of heat and had bought up all the fans. I originally intended to purchase as many fans as I could fit into my bedroom at once, but I would now have to make do with just the one. I grabbed the last fan before I had to fight over it with a bigger, sweatier customer. On the way out of the mall I stopped in Brookstone on a delusional whim, where you have the option of a $600 portable air conditioner and a $100 fan that also purifies your air and releases a bunch of ions into the air and detoxifies your karma or something. I stood in front of the working display air conditioner, closed my eyes, and imagined my life as someone with Central Air.

My new fan has the singular advantage of being louder than my old fan. But it just might save me from getting heat stroke in my sleep and never waking up (like how meteorologists always warn you about the importance of keeping your grandparents cool in the summertime). Or I’ll just start sleeping at the office.

**Disclaimer here, because you might think I’m an idiot for not buying a window unit when you can get them for roughly the cost of three fans. I have to admit that it has much more to do with laziness than anything else. Most of my behavior is dictated by my laziness and this is no exception. In less than two months, I'll be moving for the eighteenth time since I've lived here and it doesn't really seem worth the effort. I also try to resist any kind of installation that requires A Man to help out, and based on my previous air conditioner experience, I am pretty likely to drop the thing out the window. Maybe next summer.

One happy little link to this post.


Adam said...

Ashley, where are the new posts? Just discovered you blog and love it!

Ashley said...

Hi! Thanks for reading!

I am going to point something out that may or may not be obvious. If you look at the months which contain the most blog posts, the coldest months of the year are brimming with posts, while the summer months contain a trim, pathetic selection of posts. This is evident in all 4 years of my blogging history. What is occurring is that summer in the northern United States doesn't completely suck and I am out doing things with people in the city, instead of freezing my ass off in my apartment. Kind of like reverse hibernation. I assure you, this will all be cleared up very soon as summer is coming to an end and we'll all be sitting in our rooms reading personal blogs!