Some of the city's highest-profile journalists are under attack by an enemy meat cloud, which has been reeking ha ha havoc on the second floor of the New York Times' midtown offices for several weeks now.
The Newspaper Guild of New York today announced the plight of the Times' Business reporters, who are suffering the effects of an aggressive meat scent wafting from the Wolfgang's steakhouse below. The problem apparently began several months ago, and the matter was brought up with the Facilities Department last fall—"but the smells persisted." Smells which, unfortunately, are not only bothersome, but potentially harmful?
"Several BizDay employees were suffering health effects, including burning eyes and breathing issues, from what had been dubbed a 'meat cloud,'" the statement reads.
A ventilation duct was installed, and the air was professionally tested. On Friday, Times staff were informed that the meat cloud didn't contain any carcinogens, carbon monoxide or other harmful elements. Despite the burning eyes and "breathing issues," the meat cloud's risks as a health hazard have been dismissed, downgraded instead to a mere "quality of life" issue. Does this imply that the two are mutually exclusive? Would contracting the dreaded Meat Lung not qualify as both? Anyway, like mosquitoes and hay fever, the meat smell is apparently a seasonal affliction, though unlike mosquitoes and hay fever, it's not treatable with anything available at Walgreens.
"This odor is an issue, one that seems to occur seasonally at around this same time each year," a spokesperson for the Times told Daily Intelligencer. "At present, we are working with the architects of the building on a solution more permanent than relocation."
Bet Frank Bruni regrets penning that glowing blurb now, doesn't he?