Heat rocks NYC

We’re day three of a major heat wave in New York this week. It started Friday but wasn’t over 90 F even though with humidity it felt over 90. Sunday’s high in Central Park was 93, just shy of the 95 degree record for the date, set in 1933.

On Saturday, the high was 97 with high humidity so it felt like 105. I spent a few hours running errands and ended up at the Big Apple Blockparty BBQ again this year. Unfortunately we couldn’t do anything but hang in the shade and drink cold brew. We took out the evening with a roof top bbq through the morning.

New Yorkers in general were temperamental in this heat. This weekend’s day game at Yankee’s stadium on Sunday, in the fifth inning of the Kansas City Royals-Yankees game, fans cheered loudly when a cloud moved in front of the sun, then booed moments later when the sun returned.

Also on Sunday was the annual mess that is the Puerto Rican Day Parade. They had problems last year and years before as well as mass woman/sexual harassment during and after the parade but who knows if it got there this year. I doubt people had the energy to flaunt as much excitement as they did last year.

With the heat to continue through Tuesday, still weeks before summer officially starts, I know we’re in for a long hot summer.

Ties are officially out of style for Americans

I’ve never been a fan of wearing a tie. My younger association of ties was my father, daily returning from work with the tie knotted loosely around his collard shirt. My tie fashion was hand me downs from him or rentals worn only on special occasions such as graduations, certain family holidays or proms. Coming out to NY for business the tie became a standard and finally moving here I started to build my collection.

Still, my original daily tie wearing job in NY was more painful for the environment than the wardrobe. Today I’m a tie when I have to for business. I have to encourage my engineer when he needs to wear one and often pre-qualify my meetings for appropriate casualness for the first introduction.

So it’s of applauding news I hear this story. I never knew there was a Men’s Dress Furnishings Association (the trade group that represents American tie makers) and they are now expected to shut down on Thursday. The Association has found the popularity of the tie diminished in American to only 6% of men wear one daily to work (down from 10% in 2002). When people start showing up to your yearly Tie praising meeting… tieless… you know it’s not going well for the longevity of the crew.

From the WSJ:

“Power is being able to dress the way you want,”

The problem for neckwear designers, as for regular guys, is that a tie no longer automatically conveys the authority and respectability it once did, even if it does cause some people to call you sir. In fact, it can be a symbol of subservience and of trying too hard.

Lee Terrill, president of the company’s neckwear group and an executive member of the trade association, is optimistic about the tie’s future and believes the current economic downturn is actually good for his company’s tie business. His reasoning: Laid-off workers will need new ties for job interviews.

Let’s hope I don’t need any new neck ties anytime soon.

A salute to Hysteria

Here’s a little education. From the Wikipedia entry on “Female Hysteria”:

Female hysteria was a once-common medical diagnosis, made exclusively in women, which is no longer recognized by modern medical authorities. It was a popular diagnosis in Western nations, during the Victorian era, for women who exhibited a wide array of symptoms including faintness, nervousness, insomnia, fluid retention, heaviness in abdomen, muscle spasm, shortness of breath, irritability, loss of appetite for food or sex, and a “tendency to cause trouble”.

Patients diagnosed with female hysteria would sometimes undergo “pelvic massage” — manual stimulation of the woman’s genitals by the doctor to “hysterical paroxysm”, which is now recognized as orgasm….

Every normal person, in fact, is only normal on the average. His ego approximates to that of the psychotic in some part or other and to a greater or lesser extent.
~ Sigmund Freud