My friend Kevin recently got a promotion at his job, which allowed him to move into a new high rise building in downtown Boston. He packed up all of his possessions and happily headed to his new apartment, thrilled about the prospect of not having to share space with roommates, and his great views of the city skyline.
While he was unpacking his things though, Kevin noticed a problem. The electric fan that he has always kept in his window doesn't work in his new modern space, because the windows kick out to open, rather than going straight up, as a safety precaution.
For a few days, Kevin lived without his fan, but he told me that it is harder to fall asleep without the cooling air from this device. When he told me about this problem, initially I wasn't that sympathetic. After all, his luxury apartment had only one defect, and here he was, whining to me about it. But then, I thought of a solution.
While a window fan is not an option in a space where the windows don't open properly, regular fans can still be used to increase the fresh air in the room. I told Kevin to buy a pedistal fan and position it toward an open window. While this seems like it wouldn't do anything, it actually increases the amount of fresh air that flows into the room.
After I told him about this trick, Kevin tried it, and said that it works really well. He sleeps better now in his high rise luxury apartment than he ever did in his last place, thanks in part to the fan he has pointed at his window.