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44. Larry Needs a New Air-Conditioner
It had been another hot spring day. By
o’clock in the evening, it had only cooled
to 87 degrees, according to Larry's thermometer in
living room. He rarely looked at his thermometer
he usually didn't care what the exact temperature
Larry had two table fans in his bedroom.
of the high temperatures, the last three evenings
been “two-fan” nights. He used his air-conditioner only
. During one month the previous summer, he had
the air-conditioner 10 days consecutively, day and night.
electric bill that July, normally about $30, was
But Larry figured that, once in a while,
the AC wouldn't kill him. So that evening
11:30, just before he went to bed, he
on the AC. He set the thermostat to
degrees. He woke up four hours later when
heard a big bang, which sounded like two
had run into each other on the street
. But it wasn't two cars. It was the
capacitor on the roof; it had just blown
. Larry's air-conditioner was officially dead.
Two circuit breakers
switched off, so he switched them back on.
had already suspected that there was something wrong
his air-conditioner. He called Jack, the repairman, but
didn't show up until four days later because
was so busy repairing all the other air-conditioners
When Jack finally came, he climbed
on the roof. Larry heard a lot of
. Twenty minutes later Jack told Larry, "You need
new air-conditioner. Yours is the original model that
with this apartment building. All the other original
units have been replaced. Yours lasted longest, but
it’s kicked the bucket. I'm going to call
landlady to see if she will approve a
AC unit for you. It’s going to cost
parts and labor.”
“Wow,” said Larry.
if everything went as planned, he'd install a
unit Monday morning. “Until then,” he said with
smile, “stay cool.”
Larry said, “No problem,” but
wondered if he should drive to the thrift
to look for a third fan for his