In Envy of Pigeons

Wednesday I rushed down to the One World Trade Center when I heard that on it, some window washers were hanging on broken scaffolding, 69 floors above Lower Manhattan. The emergency stop function had failed on one side and resulted in precarious, queasy tilt of 45 degrees.

As I arrived, I was greeted by the scene of commuters, media and tourists, fixated and stopped in the streets, looking up at a distant angled slither high up on the south side of the gigantic tower. It had been going on for over an hour and as I shot, I couldn’t help but imagine what the private scene was like up there, in that metal basket. Two men waiting and praying, while dangling on the remaining functional thread of wire exactly the same as the other that had failed them. Alone together, with the wind and the news helicopters circling nowhere near close enough to serve any function other than their own. And all the while, both men watching with growing envy at some damn pigeons below, gliding with mindless ease on the thin Manhattan air, until landing safely on solid ground whenever they chose.

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