What a great day!
It was, according to the radio, 71 when I left my house. I sweat through my cloths--linen shirt and tropical suit--on my 10 minute walk to the train. Then, because the MTA no longer air conditions the trains, I sweat all the way to midtown. I sweat more on my walk to the office. Then, because apparently my office building is cutting costs too, I sweat all day at my desk--with my jacket OFF.
6 pm, time to leave for a banquet. It's downtown. Go to the downtown six, wait forever on platform that is hotter and steamier than the sauna at my pool where the old men sit to feel alive. The train arrives, no AC, then another walk to the venue, by the time I arrive I feel as if I have been soaked with a hose.
The venue is fine old structure, built as a bank. They knew how to build large, cool spaces in those days, before AC. I used to know the formula, but I don’t any more but basically it’s a combination of the volume of air in the space plus the height of the ceiling plus the thickness of the walls. So very large space, very high ceiling, very thick walls = cool space, pretty much at all times. This is why the main hall of Grand Central is almost always cool (though never the platforms).
But it doesn’t work if you put 800 motionless people in there crammed cheek by jowl. No AC. So I sweat through another 3 hours.
I go outside to get the subway uptown. It is 9:30. Guess what! The entire Lex express is … closed! Uptown AND downtown! Closed for construction, at fucking 9:30 on a weeknight!
What am I supposed to do? Walk over to the N-R and take that. Oh, so go blocks out of my way in this stifling heat to take a train to the West Side when I want to go to the East Side? Great.
Fuck that, I will take a cab. BTW, fares just went up yesterday by 17%. Yeah, you read that right. There are no cabs. I walk ten blocks up Broadway until I find a cab. The temp says 67. It feels like 110. I am drenched.
There is no AC in the cab. 20 minutes, $23.50,and ten gallons of sweat later, I am at GC. Missed my train by a minute. Have to wait 30 minutes for the local. Sitting and stewing—even the grand old architecture of GC can’t do anything about this liquid air. Local train also has no AC. All the public accommodations in NY have stopped AC. Obama austerity. Can’t cut bennies to the public employee unions after all and we have to save somewhere!
By the time I get off the train it is after 11. Nominally “cool” but torturously miserable. Some fuckhead runs a stop sign and almost runs me over. I whack his piece of shit car with my umbrella. He stops, apparently contemplates getting out to challenge me, then races off. Hey, this is New York! The city that never sleeps! Or the suburb that never sleeps. If killing you will save me a nanosecond, then you are expendable, asshole!
They say the next three or four days will be “more” humid. How is that physically possible? The definition of that is “pool.” How could anyone breathe such air without drowning?