Hot summer days in NYC bring back stinky smell on streets

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NEW YORK — Walking down the street in New York City on a hot July day is a full sensory experience.

In addition to feeling hot and sticky, New York has a lot of smells lingering around.

"It smells a little bit like garbage and sweaty people," Manhattan resident Jen Harmon said.

While her friend Allie Knorr said body odor often overtakes the sidewalks in midtown, when PIX11 News talked to her she had a better smell wafting under her nose.

"I think right now it smells ok because I think I'm smelling Chick-fil-A," Knorr said.

Emma Sklar was very descriptive. She said New York City smells "like the breath of a dock worker that's been eating out of the ocean directly."

James Alvarez, visiting from New Orleans, said New York City and Bourbon Street tie for bad smells.

"It just smells like a rotten egg," Alvarez said.

There's a reason why a whiff of an overflowing garbage can or mysterious puddle of street grime can turn your stomach on a hot day.

Dr. Benjamin Tweel, an ear, nose and throat doctor at Mt. Sinai, said there's science behind it. According to Dr. Tweel, smells are more pronounced in the heat because there is actually more smell in the air. A good example of this is food when you are cooking.

"When you take it out of the refrigerator, it's cold. It doesn't smell but when you heat it up those molecules are released more into the air. It smells more," Dr. Tweel said.

Unfortunately, most of the time we aren't smelling pizza or flowers. Although one sidewalk perfume seller told PIX11 he would like to change that.

He said he is, "...just trying to make the city smell a lot better."