The sweet, cloying smell of a maple syrup-like substance hits the newspapers today. Most of the reported smell-incidents occured above 96th Street (does uptown have clearer air, therefore more opportunity to smell smells?): Newsday found out that most calls to 311 just described something sweet in the air. One of our readers was directed by 311 to call 911, and later saw firetrucks around a smell-point! The Department of Environmental Protection even used hazmat equipment to check the air, according to the Daily News. And the NY Times offered dynamics of the smell - maybe Eggos or pancakes with maple syrup, caramel, or a freshly baked pie, or Bit-O-Honey candy bars, were suggestions from smellwitnesses. Sadly, we were not a smellwitness, due to the cold weather and dry heat in buildings. Maybe next time!
As for Gothamist and our Wayfaring map of where the smell was noticed? It tracks most locations in Manhattan, with a few in Brooklyn and Queens, and you can still add your own points. Please note that we added the huge maple sugar candy to the map just for effect - we have not actually seen maple sugar candy that big floating in the East River. But this reminds us that in the olden days, when maple sugar was tapped, people would pour hot maple syrup into the snow to make candy. Really - we read it in Laura Ingalls Wilder's Little House in the Big Woods.