Merrily, Merrily, Merrily, Merrily, God That Water's Cold

Photograph by Mike Hewitt

As temperatures drop, outdoor sports are freezing up, and you'd think rowing clubs would be the first to throw in the towel. But New Yorkers insist on slipping into spandex, hopping into centimeter-thick plastic boats barely wider than their behind and setting off into the chop at 5 a.m. Even more confounding, they plan to do so well into November, while the rest of us wear chunky sweaters and drink tea and peer out of frost-covered windows.

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