Friday, September 17, 2010

Joie de vivre: The Fan

Yet one more thing to appreciate in life: fans -- manual and electric, overhead and stand-up, window and desktop. Flowing air feels good, much better than stifling still air.

Fans of all types bring back specific memories of time and place. I remember the large window fan in a Manhattan apartment, the only thing giving hope while trying to sleep during a heatwave. In a Philadelphia apartment, a large decades-old stand up fan, mounted on a sort of hand truck raising it almost four feet off the ground. Not only did it push air nicely through an unairconditioned space, it had the added benefit of creating a low humming noise, making it easier to sleep in yet another heatwave.  Do fans of any size or shape bring back specific memories for you?

The modern electric fan dates back to the early 1880s! Hand-powered fans probably go back thousands of years. When it's too hot, it's nice to feel some air flow.  (Video: Diehl electric fan, brand new -- in 1916).

Today's Rune: Initiation.


the walking man said...

Ahhh yes I fondly remember having my dancing girls stand nude beside my sedan chair gently waving woven palm fronds to gently move the air about so we all could enjoy a bit of breeze. Those, as you say my friend, were the days!

Charles Gramlich said...

Amen brother. I remember sleeping under a fan as a kid, and even now I like to have my ceiling fan on even if I don't strictly need it.

nunya said...

A fan that was purchased in the 50's that is still running at the folks house. The fans I buy have a maximum life span of 5 years.