Follow by Email

Inspirational Reads

That's Not Cool, Dude

July 20, 2011

I could write a country song about air conditioning.

It started back in May, when we turned the air conditioner on and warm air came out of it. I run a heat pump for my house, which is apparently "exactly what I need". Only thing is, it wasn't warming us much during the winter and in May, when we had this first bout of ball-stickingly hot weather, it wasn't cooling.

Unimpressed and ready to burn the house down, my best friend, Joe, gave me the name of a guy who had serviced air the past. I called the guy and, because it was the first real wave of heat that we had in the summer, he was pretty booked and couldn't get out to my unit for two days. Remaining unimpressed, I waited. And sweated. Or made my own gravy. Or whatever.

Finally, he arrived, changed out some rusted pieces and recharged my unit with coolant. And then he put freon in the air conditioner--hiyo! Anyway, the air was running fine for a while. Things were cool. Not frosty, but I didn't need to wring my pillow out at night in order to shuffle off to dream land.

Not so my car, however. Er, well, the loaner car that I'm borrowing from my wife's grandmother. It probably needs a coolant recharge, as it is slow to finally cool the air, and once it starts cooling the air, it doesn't do a fantastic job, especially when the heat is 90+. When it's enough to melt lead, as the next few days are threatening to be, it just says "fuck it" and doesn't even try to cool the air.

This is fine, since I'm not in my car that much. Just from getting to home to work to other work to home, and half the time I'm not driving in what could be called "the heat of the day." Unfortunately, with the current weather forecast, despite my best efforts, I'll be driving in the heat of the night, too. And I'm not calling anyone "Mr. Tibbs."

To make matters better, the book store has a long history of air conditioning units not working quite right. Apparently, if half of them are working, it's a good day. A great day, in fact. This summer, there have been very few great days. Exacerbating the matter, I spend most of my time standing near the front door. When people come in, not only do they drag in their git along with the acerbic, clinging stench of second-hand smoke, they also drag in the hot air from outside. This air just sort of settles over my position and, despite not moving, I still stand there and sweat.

Which brings me back to the lab, where the air chillers fail, spectacularly, every summer when it gets hot. Let me assure you, ninety humid degrees in a lab coat is not nearly as sexy as one might imagine. At least the lab coat hides the pit stains, but it's more difficult to surreptitiously jangle my ballsack away from it's adherence to the insides of my thighs.

To bring this bitch full circle, last week, the air conditioning unit was running, but no air was being moved in the house. The fan in my air handler, which blows the air around and moves the cool air into the house and pulls the hot air out, was burnt out. It needed a new motor. So, I called the same guy who had done a coolant refill for me. He changed the fan out and air was moving again.

Now, the fan works great. The air is moving, I hear it humming, and there's a generally decent flow of air through the house. Bad news, though, is that the air that's moving isn't cool. It seems as though the "leak test" for the air conditioning unit wasn't exactly aced, apparently, and the coolant has leaked out. I know this because it's 90 degrees in my house at night when I go to bed. 90 degrees at midnight is not cool, in any literal or figurative sense.

I'm loath to call this guy back, if only for the fact that I'm not sure I won't be liberally sprinkling my questions to him with the word "fuck" and "dickhead". However, I don't like sleeping in a puddle of my own drippings. And the other thing is, I've already paid him $700 for his work this summer, which has basically netted me zero, as I'm right back to where I started in May. Plus, I don't really have $300 for the service call.

So, I could totally write a song about the painful misery of summer's heat without the joys of recirculated air. It'd either be country or the blues, and if it was a blues song, I would so change my name to Boiling Waters.


Anonymous said...

Our A/C went out last summer, and the four of us spent 4 days at my in-laws until someone could get replace the damn flux capacitor.

I put a window unit in my bedroom window and closed the door just to chill that one room down to 70. Tell you what, though, that little window unit cooled things down better than my whole-house A/C unit ever has. That big unit isn't really keeping up this summer, but it hasn't been over 80 in the house yet. So far so good, but I fear I need to get a whole new unit pretty soon.

That dog has the right idea. And let Allison Brie know that if she needs help staying cool, I work for free.

MJenks said...

I think I need to give Leelee Sobieski official notice that she's been replaced.

Wow, that was awkward said...

Well, the bright side is that it made for a well written blog with a clever ending.

Elliott said...

I try to get by with the AC at 77, just to take the humidity out of the air. My method of feeling cooler is to take the dog out into the sweltering heat for a few minutes. The house is downright icy after that.

Add AC repairs to the list of things I'm glad I don't have to take care of now that I rent again.

Scope said...

I think the CTA has the same AC repairman that you do. I took two different trains home from work tonight. Neither had air. But they all were crammed with people sucking my air.

Luckily, there wasn't the stench on "homeless" wafting in the air like yesterday.