Hot and Bothered in an Un-Air-Conditioned Way.

Series of air conditioners at UNC-CH.
Target Practice.
Image via Wikipedia

It’s 99 degrees outside and 88 degrees inside because the AC is DOA.

So, I called an air conditioning repairman, the cool kid who gets high on Freon and chilled air, not the uncool kid, like me, who thinks that refrigerant is a really tiny refrigerator. Hell. I don’t even know how a fan works.

The heated scenario began on 6/25/10. AC guy #1 came out for a look-see because the upstairs AC was blowing hot air, much like AC guy #1. That was when the outside temperature was a comfortable 70 plus, a week before the heat hit the fan at 99.

AC guy #1 seemed nice enough. He spent several hours testing the system, looking for leaks. In order to find a leak, he had to defrost the box-thingy in the attic, which was caked with ice. I know this because he told me so.

“It’s caked with ice,” AC guy #1 said.

“What are you going to do?” I asked, in my starring role as the clueless customer.

“I’m going to defrost it.”

“Like a pound of hamburger meat?” I said, in a fictionalized retrospective way.

“No. You can’t leave an AC unit on the counter to defrost over night,” responded AC guy #1, in my demented heat struck brain.

“So, what are yo going to do?” 

“I’m going to defrost it with boiling hot water.”

Hm, I thought. That really sounds like a lame idea.

“What’s lame about it?”

Oops. I thought I had thought it. “You weren’t supposed to hear that.”

“Do you have a better idea?”

“Yes, a hair drier.”

“That IS a better idea. But I’ll need a really long—”

“—Extension cord. Here.” I handed him a mutant ten-mile long extension cord.

AC guy #1 climbed the attic stairs into opposite heaven, a.k.a. hell.

An hour later after spring feeding AC guy #1 with multiple glasses of water that evaporated from his sweat-soaked skin. I know this since he never peed. At least I hope he didn’t pee because he never used the toilet.

“There’s good news, and bad news,” he said.

“Okay. What’s the good news?”

“I found a leak in the coil.”

“That sounds like bad news,” I said.

“Whoops. Well. Got the bad news out of the way.”

“What’s the good news then?”

“I plugged the leak in the coil,” he said, puffing up his flabby chest. “But someone needs to come back and replace the coil.”

“That’s a good news/bad news split.”

Ignoring me. 

He continued. “Okay. I’m going to complete the paperwork now and write something completely different from what I’m going to tell you. Sign here.”

I signed the paperwork after not reading it. My stupid. 

Note: Always read something before you sign it. If the person has lousy handwriting, request a handwriting expert or have him read it back to you while videotaping his response.

As is often the case after a repairman leaves a home without testing it first, the AC worked fine in theory, until the following week when the thermometer started to cry. Then AC guy #2 came a calling.

“I’m here not to fix your AC.”


AC guy #2 bounded happily up the stairs to wreck havoc upon the AC unit in the attic.

Two hours later — A blatant exaggeration or an Al Goreism.

AC guy #2 spoke. “I didn’t see any more leaks. But I can’t replace the coil because your system is so old . . .”

“How old is it?”

“How old did you say your son was?”


“Same age but only one is old enough to drink, the other can be used as sheet metal or retro chic.”

“What’s your point?”

“The AC system needs to be replaced.”

“Back to bad news again, huh?”

Ignoring me, as usual. 

“When I leave, I will be sure to leave the door open on the AC unit in the attic, so that your system will blow hot air this weekend when the temperature reaches 100.”


As I write this post, I wait for AC guy #2 to return to close the friggin door on the AC unit, or the box thingy, which reminds me of another enjoyable past time, reading, and the play, “Waiting for Godot.”

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7 Comments Hot and Bothered in an Un-Air-Conditioned Way.

  1. Ivy

    You have conversations like I have with repairmen! They always ignore me too… I can only hope that when they are in their beds at night, our sarcasm/sometimes-snide-remarks wake them from their slumber with a chuckle.

    I'm suffering with you in the heat, babe. What the hell is with this extreme East Coast weather? We're either buried by nine feet of snow on the ground or scorching in 100 degree heat. When is fall going to get here?

  2. ReformingGeek

    Yes, your weather is crazy. Wait. Everyone's weather is crazy.

    I'm so sorry your A/C. The guy we use is on his way.

    He probably won't listen to you, either.

  3. Lauren

    Ivy: My neighbor just got back from Latvia and Finland. I hear the weather is great there. There's just too much sun. It's often mistaken for a full moon.

    The heat's going to last for most of the week. It reminds me of a Twilight Zone episode when a woman dreams the earth is burning up. When she awakens, the opposite is true. It will probably snow in September.

    RF: I think Mother Nature is bipolar.

  4. mommapolitico

    Y'know, this is extremely reminiscent to my recent convo with Mr. Rooter…try tweeting about your experience. Yu'll get pretty quick service and if nothing else, telling the world the name of the incompetent company will cool you down – figuratively speaking, of course.

    So sorry, Girlfriend. I hate the heat. Hang in there, and tweet your head off! Believe me, you'll feel better.

  5. Lauren

    Perry: AC Guy #2 finally showed up at 4:30. Problem fixed. We may need to buy a new unit with Monopoly money.

  6. Tracie

    We used our Monopoly money and bought a new unit last summer. Now we're waiting on the heater to break.


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