I don’t.

As a youngster, I enjoyed the winter, but looked forward to the summer. Now that I’m older, summer is too hot and winter is too cold. Sheesh. Seems like an old gal just can’t catch a break.

This past week, Michigan’s heat wave has been one for the books. Ugh . . .

Towards the end of our first record-breaking day, with temps of 102 degrees, my electricity went out. Just like that. Done. Over. Nadda. Adios TV, adios lights, adios air conditioning.

Hello humidity . . . humility . . . heartache. Okay, maybe not heartache, but a lot of whining, for sure. Why does this always happen to me?

“Lord, you’ve mistaken me for Job! I’m Julia!”

After groping in the grey for a power bill with a phone number, talking to a computerized automated system for several minutes, and waiting through an unimaginable hold time, I was told that a power restoration time could not be estimated and that I was free to call back for an update. I was left pitifully powerless. 

The heat had its affect on all of us.

Allie did this:

Baxter did this:

And I did this:

And this:

And this:

(I would’ve done THIS anyway!)

I tried reading by candlelight but the air got thicker and I started to panic, so I settled for a restless sleep.

During the night the power came on; the television blared, the floor fan whirred, and the air conditioner purred like a beautiful baby kitten.

I thanked God, (and DTE Energy), smiled, and went back to sleep.

In the morning, I awoke and realized something disturbing; I can’t survive without air conditioning! I’m a  modern girl, a whimp, a lightweight! I admit it! I don’t have a tough bone in this calcium deficient, decrepit, old bod.

It got me to thinking: Who invented air conditioning?

So I Googled it and this is what I learned.

In 1902, only one year after graduating from Cornell University with an Engineering degree, a young Willis Haviland Carrier was challenged by a Brooklyn printing company to solve their temperature and humidity problems. Carrier carried us into a new era with the invention of the first reliable and stable air conditioning unit that addressed humidity control.

(Employed by the Buffalo Forge Co. for a starting salary of $10.00 PER WEEK.)

Other temperature-sensitive industries, like tobacco, breweries, bakeries, and food processing plants, were quick to prosper from the new invention.

In 1924, the first “human cooling”, (rather than industrial cooling), units were installed in the J.L. Hudson Store in Detroit, Michigan.

And in 1928, Carrier developed the “Weathermaker”; the first residential air conditioner. Yay!

So today, it is with enormous gratitude that I dedicate this week’s blog to my new hero, Willis Haviland Carrier, who is soley responsible for my spoiled and luxurious 21st century survival.

I raise a glass to you, Willis; your insight and ingenuity have allowed me to live healthy, happy, comfortably, and . . .

Categories: Humor, Nature, Physical Health | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 38 Comments

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38 thoughts on “SOME LIKE IT HOT

  1. Steve

    Hi Julia, After spending 50 years in Arizona and growing up with just swamp coolers, I understand how you feel….I was 40 years old before I got air conditioning!!!


    • Swamp coolers? Do I dare ask? ha ha ha! I know everyone says that Arizona has DRY heat, but I don’t think it would matter to my body if it was dry or humid….hot is hot! Thanks for reading, Steve, and leaving me a note! Be well…and stay COOL! xo Julia

  2. joanie

    Hahaha, thanks, Jules! You scored another wonderful story to delight me!

    • Thanks so much, Joanie! You’re the best, girlfriend! My blog just wouldn’t be complete without your comment. I wait for it! Thanks for reading! Stay cool! xo Julia

  3. Lynn Marchant

    Pure, unadulterated GENIUS! The quality of the writing made this piece work, with A BANG and A SIZZLE … duplicating in words the power suddenly dying and that SO oppressive, suffocating, intense heat, which left me gasping here (on a cool evening in UK!). The clipped captioning of the photos, with repetition: ‘Allie did this’ … ‘Baxter did this’ … ‘And I did this’ … ‘And this’ –
    STILL MORE figurative genius, as I felt myself there groping in the dark too, with that clipped, economy of movement necessary – each one’s adrenalin at its peek, as they adjust to the new and strange environment.
    The gifted poet in Julia will ALWAYS find its way into her prose, or narrative – which I personally find to be Food For The Soul, whatever the subject.
    The quality of the writing – and the fluency – is a revelation and would rival virtually ANY classic, or avant garde study pieces, given our high school and other students. I have but three words to finish with: PURE, MOLTEN GOLD …
    And just ONE QUESTION, Julia, because you DO set the old ‘cogs’ turning! Something your forte for research has dredged up and is niggling at me. Why did Willis Havilland Carrier command a salary of $10 per week in 1902 – when half a century on, in 1969 – I was paid a starting salary of only $10 to $11 as a newspaper intern? Could it have something to do with the kudos that goes with a Cornell degree? I guess …
    I shall have to take that up with my former employees and instructors, who largely learned their trade in ‘Old’ Fleet Street, London in the 1920s! But all of them having ‘checked out’ .., that’s a whole other story and another ‘Life’ …

    • Lynn, you are too kind; really. Your words arrive like notes in a song….sounding more lyrical than those things it sings about. Everytime I post, I wait for your response and feel like an excited child waiting for Christmas morning – your words and praise are my greatest reward and I thank you so much for them. Now, as far as your salary is concerned….ha ha ha! I can’t believe you! $10.00 A WEEK?!!! Girl, they had all your talent for those peanuts?! Omgosh, you were the deal of the century! lol I look forward to the day when I can sit at your side and listen to you talk about those days….now that would be something to write about! It will happen. Thanks, always…for reading, writing a note, supporting me in so many ways, for your friendship, and the outstanding write-ups! Stay cool, my friend! xoxo Julia

  4. great blog! and sweetpea, did you really really really get into a bathtub with ice? i’ve heard it’s a great thing to try! much love from illinois where we’re just starting to hear that we’re going to cool down to a mere ninety degrees tomorrow. . .

    • Ha ha ha! Arlynn, you make me grin. Hey, a menopausal woman with emphysema? What in the heck do you think I did?! lol Ice was certainly in order that day! Today has been even hotter still. And I wake up and thank God, and good ‘ole Willis Carrier for my nice cool apartment! Yeah, we’re supposed to get a break in the weather, also. Next week is supposed to be around 82 degrees. Maybe it’ll actually feel like summer, instead of an inferno! lol Take care, girl! Stay cool and have wonderful, happy travels! xoxo Julia

    • p.s. Arlynn….those aren’t my legs in the pic! You know that, right? ha ha ha! ((smooches, girlfriend!)) lol. xo

  5. Another good story laced with humor!!!

  6. Lynn Gardner

    A little late replying to this one but well worth the read! So agree, Julia and Mr. Carrier is a god! Lol!

  7. Elaine Irey

    This was a great read tonight I so enjoyed the laugh after the hot day!! Thank for posting!


  8. Great story! Funny, but true.
    Ruth from At Home on the Road

    • Thanks so much for reading, Ruth! And welcome to my blog! It’s wonderful to have you here! I’m glad you enjoyed the story! Stay cool, my friend! xoxo Julia

  9. I love reading you blogs! While I was reading this, if I wasn’t laughing out loud, I found myself with a smile on my face. Thank you, Julia for making my day!

  10. I loved this Julia and what’s so funny is a while back I did the same thing in looking up the inventor of A/C! He gave us both a blessing and a curse….because of the ability to control climate with A/C we’ve become rather “soft.” Wonderful article and so glad you and the fur babies got your A/C back on!

    • ha ha ha! Thank you so much! You are right….we’ve become soft and spoiled because Mr. Carrier and his wonderful invention! Thank goodness! lol Thanks so much for reading, dear friend! xoxo Julia

  11. Bless your heart, Julia. It’s been infernal here, as well. I can’t imagine my electricity going out in this. I HATE heat.

    • Thanks, Kathryn. I hope you are well. I know I have a catch-up read on your blog. I’m waiting until I can give it its proper attention….I savor your blog….like a good cup of coffee in the morning. Take care, my friend. xoxo Julia

  12. nice thank you for sharing most informative ideas and also your good view.

  13. wow, what an excellent presentation! going to follow your site now. thanks so much.

  14. good post. thank for sharing.

  15. cool presentation shared. keep it up.

  16. Pingback: SOME LIKE IT HOT | Journey with Julia

  17. Oh, bless your heart, Julia. How miserable you must have been. I’m like you, I hate heat. I was forced to purchase battery operated fans for when we lived in Haiti and only had electricity for 8 hours a day. Here in Ecuador–up in Andes–we need neither a.c. nor heat. Perfect temps all year round.

    • Thanks for the note, Kath! And ((hugs)) to both you and Miss Sara! I love the idea of no air condtioning and no heat! Wow! Sounds perfect! Cant wait to visit! ha ha….(not likely any time soon….budget, you know. lol). I’m working on my blog this morning (waaay overdue) and finally catagorizing them, so I’ve been “Pressing” one or two along the way. As dumb as this is going to sound, I didn’t know that I could “Press” them! Sheesh. What a clunk I am! ha ha. Take good care and chat with you soon, girlfriend! xoJulia

  18. Betsy Aiello

    You rock, Julia…as always!!! I want to take your creative writing class when it rolls around……just sayin………I’ll treat for ice cream after…….

    • OMGosh, Bets! You’ve got a deal, girlfriend! And thank you so much for the wonderful compliment. You are making me smile right at this moment! ha ha. You’re the best! Take good care and thanks for reading! xoJulia

  19. Reminds me of when I lived in central Illinois with no air conditioner, the temp up around 100 degrees and the humidity registering at 96%. And of a spectacularly hot day in Seattle attending a musical. When one of the actors sang “Too darned hot” everyone in the audience cheered.

    • I love that, George! The part about the audience at the musical cheering, just made me grin (big!)! Thanks so much for sharing your memories with me. I love attending shows, but have only had the opportunity to see a few in my life. Take good care, my new and precious friend! xoJulia

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