No A/C (With Anteater)

Anteater with Brain Freeze

My sweaty brow turns now to Stan Cox, an agricultural scientist and author of Losing Our Cool: Uncomfortable Truths About Our Air-Conditioned World (and Finding New Ways to Get Through the Summer), a book which argues against the excessive use of air conditioning in the modern world because of its negative environmental and societal effects and its effects on overall health.   Cox, who lives surrounded by cotton (barely) and fans (liberally) in Salina, Kansas, had the nerve to write an opinion piece in the Washington Post in the midst of this record hot summer, explaining the downside of air conditioning.  He received 67 pages of negative emails, which included death threats, and the epithet “Idiot!”  And these weren’t even from his family!

I know it’s hard to make a choice against A/C.   A New York apartment without it feels not only muggily hot but horribly grimy.

And yet, and yet… if you just stay still enough (so that the sweat congeals to a 98.6 degree layer between your skin and the 102 degree world), and keep your rooms dark enough (so that you can’t quite see the grime), it really is quite liveable.

I can hear some of you thinking—”you call that a life?”  or, “but why?”

All I can say there’s something kind of lovely about heat-enforced laziness; and the relief that comes as evening falls, as cold baths are slithered into, as icy smoothies are sipped (despite the brain freeze), is really pretty cool.

(PS – I’m trying to branch out from elephants, but if you like elephants, check out 1 Mississippi by Karin Gustafson on Amazon.)

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2 Comments on “No A/C (With Anteater)”

  1. Mark Potter Says:

    Ka . . . interesting . . but . . . H.Sapiens has so radically heated his own evironment by driving on slabs of concrete and asphalt, and working in buildings that would have been better designed as ovens . . that . . air conditioning has become a medical necessity for a great many people.

    I think it’s all part of our design, to burn the fossil fuels at such a rate, that glaciers melt, and large leafy plants prosper, that oceans rise, and super-powerful hurricanes literally knock over our cities . . .

    We are a population that is reaching an apex, and will crash, as assuredly as the bison ‘crashed’ when it met us . . .

    I’ve signed up for the notifications Ka. . I’ll read here with same interest as on FB.

    • manicddaily Says:

      Dear Mark, Thanks. Unfortunately, I agree with you about our h.sapiens design–it’s seems very hard for humans to think in a truly longterm way. Hope all is well. K.


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