Friday, January 21, 2005

Cold Air, Hot Irony 

It's been bitter cold for almost two weeks now. The mercury drops to zero nightly; days soar high at 10 farenheit. And for those weeks, all oldwindow eaves and uninsulated shingle, our top-floor apartment has run a cool 45 degrees.

The hardwood floors numb at the barest touch. Bedheets chill where they should comfort. Windows ice over thickly, humidifier-driven, until the white snow meadow warps into the trees beyond, an impressionist painting, a stark mosaic of refracted whites and browns.

We have no knob of our own, are subject to the thermostatic whim of downstairs neighbors more prone to use their fireplaces than the heating elements. Heat rises, it's true, but in turn of the century once-attic spaces such as ours, it does not linger.

Until yesterday, when slippered-and-pregnant domestic goddess Darcie in her infinite wisdom discovered the sweltering rooms below, and convinced our neighbors to crack their doors, letting the heat flow from their rooms into halls and stairwells.

Irony abounds. Medblogger Kevin, M.D. reports that cancer has overtaken heart disease as the top killer of Americans under 85 primarily because there are fewer smokers. After two years of too-hot summers and too-cold winters, with only two weeks left before a health-driven move to less rarified quarters across campus, we solve our perennial struggle with the elements. We are warmer with the door open. We welcome the heartless, heatless winter.

posted by boyhowdy | 10:25 AM |

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