Beautiful, sweet-smelling nature as we know it is all but lost on New York City.

We accepted long ago that the only animals who can survive NYC's hateful human nesting grounds are bedbugs and rodents — well, and the occasional brave-hearted reptile — and that the only patch of green in the whole place is infested by hundreds of rabid raccoons.

But how'd they screw up honey? Leave it to the suffocating confines of this East Coast cesspool to ruin the one natural pleasure still (normally) possible in an urban setting.

The New York Times reports the tragic story. Basically, beekeepers Ceriso Mayo and David Selig couldn't keep their bees far enough from the nearby industrial district to ensure they wouldn't drink from the big red vats outside Dell's Maraschino Cherries Company.

Times author Susan Dominus has way too much fun describing the bloodbath:

Where there should have been a touch of gentle amber showing through the membrane of their honey stomachs was instead a garish bright red. The honeycombs, too, were an alarming shade of Robitussin.

And just in case you were thinking it might actually taste kind of good:

Mr. Selig, who owns the restaurant chain Rice and raises the bees as a hobby, was disappointed that an entire season that should have been devoted to honey yielded instead a red concoction that tasted metallic and then overly sweet.

Gross, dude. We'll keep our bees on the flower diet and enjoy our honey solid gold and farmers-market fresh, thank you very much.

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