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According to a 2009 Residential Energy Consumption Survey, 87 percent of U.S. households are now equipped with air conditioning.
A pool of sweat and tears that has accumulated on my keyboard made it difficult to type that cruel statistic.
Like many students in Boulder, I am without air conditioning and, consequentially, without moisture content in my body. I hail from the Las Vegas desert, so I am no lightweight in the face of heat. However, even us Las Vegans who recreationally sun bathe in 120-degree temperatures more than likely have the luxury of returning to an air conditioned home.
I am unsure who thought it would be cool (pun absolutely intended) to do away with air conditioners in certain homes despite consistent 90-degree days, but I assume he or she figured that installing the units would be too expensive for student occupants. College living spaces aren’t a big priority for landlords and property management companies, especially when financially established homeowners could install it later.
After all, young people are troopers, right? They survive solely off of ramen and pumpkin spice lattes, so what’s a little heat added into the equation?
Most residence halls on campus don’t boast air conditioning, either. It would seem that Boulder has a thing for sweaty students.
Sophomore marketing and operations management major Mark Yabut is yearning for cooler days in his second year living in Buckingham Hall at CU’s Kittredge Complex.
“Its hard to concentrate on homework and studying because I keep having to wipe off my sweat every other second,” Yabut said. “I wish CU would at least provide fans for the study rooms in the residence halls. It’s the least they can do for having us pay so much.”
Holly Moran, a senior communications major, had a scare this summer when the heat in her Goss-Grove home caused her to feel physically ill.
“I was downing water and trying to stay cool, but I started to get dizzy and felt like I was going to pass out.” Moran said. “I had to sit down in a freezing shower for a while before I felt okay again.”
Who doesn’t love a nice sit in a freezing shower? In my case, it’s a lavish bed of towels on the first floor of my two-story apartment because — as my elementary school science teacher taught me — heat rises. I fear that sleeping in my upstairs bedroom will result in a Sylvia Plath-esque “died in an oven” kind of thing.
Not only is living in a home sweet sauna generally uncomfortable, but it’s also proven detrimental to sleep. In two decades of research, doctors have generally found that the ideal temperature to fall asleep in is between 60 and 68 degrees Fahrenheit. Apparently, a drop in body temperature increases sleepiness or something, but I don’t need science to tell me that trying to fall asleep when it feels like your body is about to burst into flames can be tricky.
Hey, at least you’ll have a better excuse the next time you fall asleep in class. “Sorry, professor. I don’t have air conditioning, and, you know, science.”
Maybe if all the Buffs deprived of air conditioning coordinate a simultaneous heat stroke, the City of Boulder will address this flagrant disregard for human decency. All you cool-air elitists are rolling your eyes in your nice, 60-68-degree homes. If you wouldn’t mind, could you roll them faster to get a draft blowing my way? I appreciate it.
In the meantime, I’m going to flop onto my towel bed and try not to combust.
Contact CU Independent Opinions Editor Lizzy Hernandez at Elizabeth.email@example.com.