New York City, February 10, 2014

[No stars] The snow from overnight, now the newest old snow, lightly covered the older and dirtier snow. On cars that had been driven, melted patches showed the ghostly pattern of the internal structure of their hoods. To the east, the sun on the whiteness and the wetness gave everything a spurious pristine shine. The cold was bleak, neither shocking nor capable of being ignored. Breath steamed on the subway platform at noon. A man walked by with his hands thrust in the high pockets of his pea coat, the posture even more pinched and uncomfortable-looking than hands-in-pea-coat usually is. The ground presented every sort of leftover slipping hazard: watery slush, packed glazed snow, refrozen invisible black ice, thick slippery ice-slabs — all demanding the most tedious sort of careful attention. An immense chunk of asphalt had been blasted out of a pothole on Broadway, leaving behind two sibling chunks rattling loose in the crater. A sliver of distant sky at sundown was in lovely shades of violet, if you took an eye off the dangerous footing. At night, bleached light bounced off the sparsely populated sidewalks of Times Square. People were still sitting on sidewalk stools to have their caricatures drawn.