New York City, January 23, 2013

★★★ Breath came out as white as cigarette smoke, and inhaling felt dangerous. The breeze was gentle if you were an anemometer, but unbearable by fleshly standards. Had someone maliciously added an extra block of walking between the subway and the office, somehow? Late clouds were soft-edged and buff-colored, like gentle illustrations in a children’s book. Actual children, the younger ones, were confined to their strollers, sheeted over with plastic, like air-conditioner vents or screen porches or some other thing outside its useful season.