Ever since I became the refrigeration editor ofThe NEWS,I’ve tried to figure out exactly what is “refrigeration.” After all, the industry spins off the letters HVAC with great ease and fanfare, but then stumbles when adding the “R” to the mix.

Sometimes “R” is a step-child such as when “R” is an after thought such as “HVAC (Slash) R” as in HVAC/R, as in “oh, yeah, we almost forgot to mention refrigeration.”

Even many of the HVAC contractors want nothing to do with “R.”

Well, finally, someone has come up with as clear-cut of a definition as you are going to find. During the FMI Energy & Technical Services Conference a couple of months ago, the following was offered during a technical session.

Commercial Refrigeration:A science of vague assumptions based upon debatable figures taken from inconclusive experiments performed with instruments of problematical accuracy by persons of doubtful reliability and questionable mentality.

I will choose not to ID the presenter of that quote unless he wants to step forward and take credit - or blame. I suspect he had tongue firmly in cheek. But, frankly, as one in the refrigeration sector, I sees some validity in the definition especially in terms of the “questionable mentality,” when applied to me.