After a week, or maybe more, of bright, cool, azure San-Francisco-like weather, a thick smudge has settled over New York that you couldn't blast away with a thousand jackhammers.
The city seems to have slowed, as if the black cars and the cabs and the tractor-trailers and the Maseratis were running through molasses. Even the merry and jaunting squeals of children as they head off to day camp in the green of suburbia seems dampened by the sump of the summer air.
The sky is the color of lint from a dryer and it won't make up its mind if it's going to darken and rain or brighten and bring even more heat to the city. It just sits there, the sky does, glowering and mocking us our discomfort. Revenge for the filth we attack it with.
I was out early this morning, and stupidly exited my car at Lexington and 62nd--over two miles from work. West I trod accumulating sweat and apprehension with each block.
Of late, I have been gloomy. Gloomy, I think, primarily from seeing the plasticine smiles from southern France, where so many of my Facebook friends have been for the last week or so. Gloomy that we--creators of images--should know and excoriate better than anyone the Empire of Illusion and Cycle of Cynicism we perpetuate when we laud work that's never run, or worse, is purpose-built for winning.
We all know the data--how many hundreds of trillions of messages we are faced with each day. Yet, despite those numbers, despite the pressing and oppressive ubiquity of a world where advertising covers nearly every square inch of everything, no one has ever "seen" an ad that's run at Cannes.
Still that becomes our shibboleth: to win at Cannes.
A heavy pall is hanging over the city.
Maybe it has nothing to do with the weather.