Archives for the month of: June, 2011

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This is what happens when you block the driveway of Economy Fuel Oil on Humboldt. Good luck scraping all the stickers off after you return from shopping. Hey, at least they didn’t have it towed.

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Congratulations, you have completed step one; you have bagged your dog’s excrement. The difficult part is over. Now move on to step two: PUT THE SHITBAG in a GARBAGE CAN. If this two step process is beyond your comprehension maybe dog ownership is not for you.

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I was disappointed to hear that the Brooklyn Museum has canceled its street art show. ‘Cause who would wanna promote this type of glorious vandalism when plain corrugated metal walls are so attractive?

I bike and I bike often. If you need to get from north Brooklyn to most other points in Brooklyn or Queens, without taking the roundabout subway route into the city, and back, you must. Or wait for a bus. Or pray that the G train is running if your destination is lucky enough to be in that narrow region where the G is useful.

All this biking is not without danger. There are always those frightful seconds when I am in the blind spot of a turning car. Or have a pedestrian pop out from between two parked cars; these pedestrians are usually gleefully isolated from their near death experience by headphones or cell phones and scamper away without even a glance of acknowledgement as I bounce off a parked car or squeak my hand breaks and veer into traffic to avoid them.

And then there are the car doors opened directly in my path. The driver of the recently parked car is so exuberant at his parking prowess that the door must be flung ajar in celebration. Or the driver emerges from the car as if returning to the world from a long winter’s hibernation; outstretching his arms to the sides, his face grimaced and contorted with a yawn, eyes closed, and head pointed up to feel the sunlight for the first time in months. Neither the proud parker or the returning hibernator can be bothered by a quick check in the rearview mirror to insure there is no cyclist in the vicinity that they are going to kill with their door.

East River State Park is a nice place to get your bearings after an assault.

And the dangers go on and on, but at most times there is no malice involved in these distressing encounters. But twice now I have been the object of road rage. Both incidents involved a car speeding up from behind, blaring the horn then swerving into me, pinning me against a parked car or truck.  And once I am affixed in place I am insulted, graphically and at high volume. Once the driver has had his say they leave. Rapidly. Leaving me scuffed and terrorized, adrenaline surging and hands shaking, alone on the side of the road.

I am at a loss to explain the objective of this vehicular terrorism when it happens. I continue my ride stunned and anxious, flinching at every elongated honk. But the next time I prepare to ride it takes a little more determination to put the pedals in motion. Am I sure I want to submit myself to another attack? Can I risk feeling that vulnerable today? What is going to happen now? And these questions make me angry. That was just what these anti cycling motorists had in mind: To frighten me into surrendering. Yes, I will yield when assaulted by a driver wielding their sedan like a multi-ton battering ram, but I will continue to have the audacity to bike. I will not let the terrorists win.