I can see Sutro Tower outside my picture window, and this is how I judge the weather in San Francisco.
Partly cloudy. Bright. Hazy.
San Francisco has been very hazy lately, and I mean this to be meteorological as much as metaphorical, visual. Wikipedia starts that haze “is traditionally an atmospheric phenomenon where dust, smoke and other dry particles obscure the clarity of the sky.” This description, however, does not conjure an image comparable to the titanium-hued haze that has been laying upon us.
It has been a fine mist, a diffuse lens, an amplifier of the sun. After the greyness of the rains, the doldrums of energy that crept through town as everyone slowed down and sought shelter, this brightness is violent and shaking.
It’s too bright to work. And, it’s almost too bright to go outside. We lower our eyelids and squint, little umbrellas deflecting the radiation.