I noticed a sign in one of the office doors which reads

Please use the revolving doors to keep you cool

I know the word "cool" is not meant here in the literal sense as there is no scientific basis for it. So it should be the other meaning for "cool" which is synonymous with elegance/style. If it is used in that context, shouldn't it read as below:

Please use the revolving doors to look cool

The above usage might come across a little petty but this is the one I am familiar with. Which one is the right usage?

1 Answer 1


It could be the literal sense after all.

I guess the usual doors might let out too much of the refrigerated air from the building, whereas the revolving doors might help keep the refrigerated air inside.

I cite from The Rockefeller University website:

Seal drafty windows and doors with insulation kits, caulk or weather-stripping to keep the warm air inside. It also helps to remove window air conditioners, or to cover up the interior and exterior faces of permanent ones. When on campus, make sure to use the revolving doors to prevent heat from escaping — they save up to 30% in energy costs spent reheating lobbies.

In a hot climate, the same might apply to preventing cool air from escaping.

Here's a weighty treatise on the energy-conserving effect of revolving door use (Massachusetts Institute of Technology).

P.S. Why did the authors of the sign choose the wording

Please use the revolving doors to keep you cool

instead of

Please use the revolving doors to keep the building cool

is anybody's guess: I guessed it's an attempt at wordplay, but ColleenV and Jay say (see comments below) it is likely the means to personalize the suggestion, to make people understand that it's in their own interest to use the revolving door.

  • 1
    aha! Good catch! Thanks. I do think it should be "To keep the building cool" instead of "To keep you cool". The current version indirectly implies it though ;-) Oct 3, 2014 at 13:24
  • @toddlermenot: you're welcome. (0: Oct 3, 2014 at 13:25
  • 3
    The wording could have also been chosen to personalize the suggestions. Many people may not care if the building is cool or the company has to spend more money to keep it comfortable, but they do care if they're uncomfortable.
    – ColleenV
    Oct 3, 2014 at 15:02
  • 1
    I think @ColleenV is correct here. I doubt it's an attempt at wordplay with the idea of the slang meaning of "cool", though I guess that's possible. But more likely, they're just trying to personalize it: the purpose is to keep yourself cool, not the reduce the company's energy bill.
    – Jay
    Oct 3, 2014 at 16:15

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