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Cold War

You gotta love Kentucky. We go right from cold weather to summer, with just a smidgen of springtime to get us ready for hot weather. And the onset of summer means war breaks out in my house.


Dan wants the air conditioner cranked down to 68 degrees. I am perfectly content to set it to 78. He wants to keep it running on high 24/7. I would turn it off at night or once the house gets to a comfortable level of coolness. And so the battle is joined. His mantra, which gets old and annoying very quickly, is, “It’s hot in the house. It’s hot in the house.” He makes a big show of wiping the sweat off his brow and acts as though it’s his life’s blood pouring out of him.


I don’t like air conditioning. I don’t like freezing in my own home. When I worked at the newspaper, I kept a sweater on my chair all summer long because it just got too darn cold. There were some people, however, who were perfectly content to have the office feeling like a walk-in freezer. I suppose if I ever hit menopause and start having hot flashes, I will appreciate a cold home or office. But until then, I want the air kept comfortable, not icicle inducing. I would just have fans and keep the windows open all summer long if I had my druthers. I keep a big cup of ice water close at hand at all times and that effectively keeps me cool.


So Dan and I fight over the thermostat. He turns it down to 68 when he comes in. I wait until he goes to bed and sneak downstairs to turn it back up. “Just wear warmer clothes,” he tells me, and then disparages me for wearing sweats in the middle of June. It’s ridiculous, I know. I would show him how my electric bill quadruples when summer comes, but he probably wouldn’t make the connection. One of Dan’s bigger faults is a common one of young adults: his concerns and his comfort outpace everyone else’s. So he whines and moans about how hot it is, wearing me out.


The only thing that really impels me to turn on the air conditioning is my dog, Spotty. It is pathetic to see your dog panting because it’s hot. And he can’t really do anything about it. So for Spotty I will turn on the air. For Dan … get a fan.

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