I’ve been coming to Paris in late May (i.e, post-Cannes) off and on for a good 10 or 12 years, and it’s never felt this chilly. Why does it feel like effing mid-October or mid-March? Last night I had to wear a sweater, a scarf and an extra T-shirt for warmth. Two years ago at this time it was a good 15 or 20 degrees warmer. Summery weather, T-shirts, warm all over, gentle balmy evenings. It’s surreal to be experiencing mid-fall or late-winter temperatures.
I feel like I’m in The Day The Earth Caught Fire (’61), only in reverse. Nuclear explosions have thrown the earth off its natural orbit and we’re slowing moving away from the sun, bringing lower and lower temperatures. I am a non-smoking, non-alcoholic Edward Judd, of course — the sardonic, hard-nosed journalist walking the streets with a scowl on my face. (Or is that just a smirk?) Except there’s no Janet Munro or Leo McKern to banter with.
The source of this discomfort are frigid winds blowing in from Finland and Russia, but the reason it’s different (or so I’m presuming) is because of climate change. It’s bordering-on-cold in Paris because classic weather patterns have stopped manifesting, and part of the reason for this is the refusal of intransigent, corporate-beholden Republicans and the Tea Party idiots and the climate-change deniers to do anything about what’s happening all over, and because of the carbon emissions from China and India. We’re living in an age of Extreme Weather Phenomena.