THE POWERCOOL 9000 IS NO MORE.
Folks lucky enough to meet me face-to-face often comment on my personal warmth. I always considered it a complement how they would repeatedly acknowledge my warm personality. But recently, I found out differently, a close friend who confided in me explained; "They aren’t exactly commenting on your personality, however warm and bright it may be. They are instead referring to your awesome ability to sweat buckets in relatively cool environments!" Yeah, I'll admit if it's above 72 degrees my body will begin spitting out little droplets of water... And at 73 and higher it will become a torrential downpour of pheromone scented bodily fluid. So what? I for one think it all makes me very attractive. 'Specially to them members of the opposite sex. I'll just bet it does!
With that said, be it understood that for me to be comfortable in my squalid dwelling, the thermostat on the PowerCool 9000 is at the "meat locker" setting, ─ clearly designated on the thermostat, because in actuality, the PC 9000 is a refrigeration unit from a defunct meat storage facility.
Early last week, I had awoken suddenly from a deep sleep. Something was wrong. I could not see my breath!!! In my groggy state of mind I wondered if I was dead? Pinch... -ouch! No, I'm not dead, (whew!) I quickly realized why I couldn't see my breath, ...it seemed that someone turned the air conditioning off. I got up to check it out. The thermostat was set properly and sure enough the PC 9000 was running full guns. Everything was as it should be, except for one important detail; the air coming out of the vents was totally without coolness. Warm air, almost hot. Well, thought I, that can't be good.
Upon further investigation, I found that the compressor was totally shot. Completely beyond repair, I need a whole new A/C setup! After a phone conversation with a refrigeration contractor, it became crystal clear that replacing my industrial freezer unit was going to cost big dollars. Being a little low on funds, I opted to forgo whole house air conditioning and concentrate on my bedroom. For a real comfortable cool nights sleep, I always figured one of those slide out cooler drawers like in a mortuary, would make a fantastic bed. However, upon checking prices, I was, once again, dismayed by the expense. The lowest quote I received was $21,395, installed with compressor and controls with 2 drawers, upper and lower. (Better get two, in case I get me a girlfriend…) After a hard long look at my available resources, I decided on a third option that would fit better with my fiscal reality: A small no frills window unit for my bedroom!
I was comparing models and prices at Spendie Mart when he approached me. A tall, lanky man about 6 feet tall, with long black hooded coat. The hood concealed most of his face, even his dark eyes. "I need to talk to you… outside" He said in his deep and raspy voice. "About what?" I inquired. "I got what you need!" Outside, in the parking lot, he gave me his pitch; turns out he was promoting a brand new line of air conditioners. And looking to get established, he thought a major celebrity like myself would be great advertising. His breath was foul, but his deal sounded sweet! He had a window unit GUARANTEED to cool my entire place. And the price wasn't bad! It was free! Nada, nothing, including installation!!! There was only one catch, for a reason he would not explain, the unit had to be installed immediately. That wasn’t going to work for me. In 20 minutes, I had an important meeting with my publisher, the money grubbing tyrants at Kat and Mick Enterprises. However, I was so desperate to get air conditioning, I ignored the security risk and tossed him my house key. I began to write down my address, but he stopped me. "I know where you live" he said. ?!? This alarmed me a little, but it's not too surprising. After all, I am famous.
When I arrived home, an astounding blast of frigid air greeted me at the door. Wow, this must be some window unit! Even the massive PC 9000 couldn't cool this well. I entered the bedroom to look it over. It was smaller then I expected. A smaller then average sized unit sitting in my window, pouring out tons and tons of cold air. Awesome! But holy smokes, was it ever loud! I mean loud, loud! It was as if its main function was to produce noise and the chilled air was just an accidental byproduct of its primary purpose; making a God-awful ear splitting racket!!! Its repertoire of sounds was quite impressive. Rattles, hums and buzzes of every pitch. Chirps, burps and gurgles at ever changing volume and timbre. Imagine 1,000 Rattle snakes fighting 1,000 bobcats in a snare drum factory filled with angry bees. Then, add a skipping Ramones record playing backwards. Can you imagine that sound? Well, this was completely different. But every bit as weird! And, it also had… Voices! An immense chorus of deep, wailing, even screaming voices. Yes, I was impressed by its awesome cooling capacity, but all the noise it made was totally unacceptable. Sleep would be impossible whilst this A/C beast was composing its unholy symphony of chilled air. And it seemed to be getting louder by the moment.
I decided to call the man who installed it. I had his number on the card he gave me. I reached into my wallet. Shit, nothing but ashes… Damn it, my money must have spontaneously combusted. Again!! I hate when that happens.
The manufacturers name was etched on the unit, so I Googled it and got an 800 number. After a vigorous game of telephone runaround, I finally got a real person on the other end. He asked me for the serial # and model #. I removed the front cover to access the nameplate. "Ok" I said "Model: Six hundred and sixty six. Serial number: Six 66. Date of manufacture: Ah, yeah …666" The man on the phone chuckled as I read him the numbers, then became indignant. "Sir, our serial and model numbers will be a minimum of five digits ending with a 3-letter suffix. It’s a little late for April fools, besides you sound like you’re drunk. At ABC Amalgamated Cooling, we are very busy and we take a dim view of childish pranks. Good day sir!" CLICK. He hung up, well, of all the nerve! Drunk? Ha! I'm not even half way! I would have called back to give him an earful, but I became intrigued about something more significant then the rude telephone lackey. With the cover removed, I noticed something very odd. Very odd indeed. This air conditioner, it had no, …how shall I say it? No insides, -no innards! No compressor, no fans, no wires. Nothing, just an empty case. Just a glowing, empty case full of cold air. Did I mention it glowed? At first I thought it had a built in nitelite, …how ingenuous! However, that idea faded as the pleasant reddish glow has steadily gotten brighter. Now becoming an unnerving, eye piercing red box of cool fire.
This all got me to thinking, that maybe I need to do some thinking on this. Some deep thinking. I need to visit my personal place of Zen, …Bob’s Beer and Liquor E-pour-ium.
Wow, they had a great sale going on! As I loaded up the 95 Escort with my thinkin' supplies, I determined what I need to do. I need to unplug that A/C unit. Like right now, or even sooner!
2 hours and 7 bottles later, I entered my bedroom. Even with my sunglasses on, the intense glow was blinding. The room was absolutely freezing. Ice had formed on the walls and floors, and the ear-piercing wail was louder then ever. I reached for the plug. Well, I could have guessed it… It had no cord, and of course no plug! That was logical, I suppose, after all it had no insides! “Screw it, I 'm tossing this baby right out of my window”. Bad idea!!! My hands protested strongly, as I grabbed hold. Holy crap, it was RED HOT! Or was it red cold? I didn’t know for sure. I knew this; my hands were in agony. As I was running them under cold water to ease the pain, I began to realize that even with thick gloves, pry bars or a frigging jack hammer, this window unit was not going away.
Not knowing what else to do, I called a local A/C guy. Yeah, that was a great idea… He refused to go anywhere near it, but to make me feel better (I guess…) he showed me 2 inches of his butt crack and charged me 80 bucks. It looks like I've gotten more then I bargained for. There is some serious shit going on here.
But what? Just what do I have sitting in my bedroom window??? I reached for another bottle of thinkin' fluid. After the third bottle, it came to me!!! What I have here is A THERMAL GATEWAY FROM HELL! Just think about it, Hell is located deep underground, Earths basement if you will. Basements are damp and cold. So in order to get Hell that hot, they have to remove the cold air, right? In any A/C system the cool air coming out the front side is proportional to the hot air that comes out the back. Basically it removes the heat from the room and sends it outdoors. Sometimes an air conditioner is run in "reverse" and used to produce heat. They are called Heat Pumps. I believe I have, in effect, a heat pump connected to the bowels of Hellfire. Like, I'm on the cool side while the souls in eternal damnation are on the hot side. Wow, I am pumping my hot air directly onto Satins vast assemblage of the damned. Cool!
Ya gotta do what ya gotta do.
Many weeks have passed. As I correctly surmised, the unit could not be removed. I’ve tried everything; I even hired a heavy-duty backhoe, hoping to 'scoop' it out of my window. The large burly operator obviously thought I was a nutcase. Who could argue? But, I found his macho, condescending attitude very annoying. When the heavy mechanical arm shattered at first contact with the possessed appliance, I had the last laugh. It was well worth the price of admission; watching him fly off his rig, running away, screaming like a little girl!!! He never did come back to get what’s left of his backhoe.
My squalid home is now one room smaller. I had my bedroom encased in concrete! The solid 12'x14' block of cement kills most of the noise, and the super chilled concrete cools my house down to my desired meat locker setting. And, bonus! I don’t need my icemaker anymore; a quick stab with an ice pick along the outside of my bedroom wall breaks off a chunk of the clearest ice this side of Hell. But man, it sure was an expensive ordeal. With the money I laid out for the concrete (400 yards!) and the backhoe; I could have gotten a new PowerCool 9000 and my coveted mortuary drawers. But all is good! I mean look, why sweat the small stuff? So, I got me a gateway to the satanic netherworld in my use-to-be bedroom, what's so bad about that? No home is perfect. Like I said, I'm meat locker cool with free ice! And without the PC9000 pounding away, I'm saving big money on my electric bill!!! Except, now that I get to thinking about utility bills… It’s summer now, but what about this winter? I can't put my finger on what exactly worries me. Would a huge sub-zero thermal mass inside my house present a problem in the winter? I can’t think of any issues off hand, but yet… something… Hmm, I think I may need to do some more thinking on this. Some deep thinking. I wonder if the Beer E-pour-ium still has that sale going on…
If you have the means and the desire, S. Lyle OConnor can be contacted via the World Wide Web. Shawnoconnor@hotmail.com is the required syntax employed to make that technological miracle become reality.