Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Laundry Line Art in Queens - Revisited

You may recall a post from last month where I had heard about a laundry line art installment in Queens. Unfortunately, by the time I biked over there to see it for myself, it was gone.

Well something very surprising happened on Monday: I received a comment from an unfamiliar name on that blog post:
usemeee said...
Hello fellow cyclist BC, a new line is up this morning. I too love the basket, and the musings 
I couldn't believe it! Could it be true?! And just who was this commenter?  The artist themselves? Or a passer by who noticed it and remembered my blog post and took the time to look it up and leave me a comment? And were they telling the truth or just messing with me?

Call me cynical (I am) but I wondered if the comment was sincere or if someone was sending me on a wild goose chase. However, I was not taking any chances of missing this piece again, if it *was* there. But since the message arrived on a bike-friendly weather day and I had no plans after work, there was no harm in me biking over there as soon as I got home that night to check it out.

And that's precisely what I did!

As I approached, from a block away, I saw it - I saw the stark, clean white garments against the dirty gritty background of Queens. Holy crap! It really *was* there!!

I pulled the cruiser over and got a bunch of photos. Enjoy!

 It's Back!!!!!



My bike goes in for a closer look

While I was there taking photos, a young man who was there with his girlfriend asked to photograph me for an "art project". I let him take my photo and asked him if he was the artist. He said no, but I wondered... A short while later, another man asked to photograph me with his cell phone, and I let him. I also asked him if he was the artist, but he, too, denied it. Since I rarely get photos of me with my bike, I asked him to take a photo of me with my own camera:

My shirt says it all: I <3 NY! And this is just one reason why - my bike, random art and adventures. Life is good and I'm so thankful to live in this great city! 

To the artist - thank you so much for having the vision to take something so seemingly ordinary and turning it into art. And kudos to whatever you went through to execute the installment. I can't imagine how you got into that caged area.

To the commenter, (if you are not one in the same, but I have a feeling you might be) thank you for alerting me so quickly. Not only was the news completely unexpected, but being able to see and photograph this piece was truly the highlight of my day. And you have no idea how badly I needed something to look forward to and put a smile on my face that night. Your timing was perfect.

If you're in the area, check it out. It likely will not be up for long- it may even be gone already!

Monday, May 17, 2010

An Open Letter to the NYC Cabbie with medallion 9M31

This stupid prick nearly ran me over on 61st St!

Hey douchebag! Yeah you, dickwad!

Remember me? Saturday afternoon, East 61st Street? Let me refresh your memory: I was the young woman on the pink bike riding west on the far left side of the left lane, close to the curb. The middle and right lane were completely clear but you choose to come speeding within inches of my handlebar in the left lane in an effort to get ahead of, and in front of, the guy approaching in the middle lane.

Well guess what, asshole? I'm an actual real live flesh and blood human being who could have been pretty horribly mangled or killed if you had actually come into contact with me or my bike.

But my life, my entire existence, just didn't mean that much to you - getting in front of that other car was all that mattered. So you put my life at risk, just so that you could arrive at the light first, in the lane of your choosing. Obviously, that's far more important than me keeping my limbs or continuing to live and breathe. Obviously.

It happened so fast and scared the hell out of me. I remember screaming out-loud "JESUS MOTHER *&^%$@!#$!(*&^!!!!" as you sped past me. I was totally shaken, literally trembling, but continued riding straight up to the light. There, the light was red, and your cab was waiting for the light. Now you were in the far right lane. You had achieved your goal of getting around the guy in the middle lane and getting into the first position in the far right lane. Bravo! And good thing you nearly killed me - so you could arrive at a red light 3 seconds sooner than you would have otherwise. Nice job!

I quickly photographed you (see above) and wanted to confront you on the driver side, but there was no room for me and bike to reach you (as you can see in the photo), so I approached your vehicle on the passenger side. The window was rolled up. I banged on it so furiously, I thought for sure the glass, or my hand, would break. Neither did.

I started off with a big fat middle finger for you. You rolled down the window and when I screamed at you (much to the horror of your passengers, who of course witnessed this event) "WHAT THE F&^% WAS THAT BACK THERE?!" You had the NERVE to yell back at ME - pointing to the right side of the street and scolding me that the bike lane was on the right side of the street.

Don't. Even.

1- There is no designated or painted bike lane on that street. When there is a bike lane, I use it. Of course, many vehicles do not respect the lane, so I photograph them and often shout "BIKE LANE!" at them as I pass (yes, I've become one of those cyclists...)
2- I prefer riding on the left side of one way streets when there is no designated bike lane because there is less chance of getting doored by parked cars.
3- REGARDLESS of what side of the street I was riding on and whether or not there was a bike lane, YOU AND YOUR SEVERAL TON, SPEEDING METAL BOX ON WHEELS DO NOT HAVE THE RIGHT TO COLLIDE INTO A FRAGILE HUMAN BEING ON A BICYCLE!

I tried to summarize that for you at the time but couldn't get all of those words out fast enough and knew I had seconds before the light changed. So I pretty much summed up my thoughts with several very loud, very angry "F^%$ YOU"s instead.

The light turned green and I gave you the finger one more time. Still trembling, I took off, continuing on 61st Street and turning south on 5th Ave when I hit Central Park. As I rode from 61st Street down to at least 50th Street, I was still shaking from the adrenaline of nearly getting hit, followed by the confrontation with you. It was not pleasant.

In summary, sir, in case you missed on Saturday, I'd like to remind you to go f&^% yourself. You clearly do not value human life and should not be operating a vehicle on the streets on Manhattan. Or anywhere, for that matter.

F&*^#@! you.
I mean that sincerely: f*&^$# you,
*Bitch Cakes*

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Update: The Bagpiper of McCarren Park

You may recall that not long ago, I blogged about a bag-piping gentleman in my neighborhood who I had been fortunate enough to catch a few times while biking around last summer.

Well, much to my surprise and delight, he's back!

Friday night was the last day of April, and it was a superb spring evening. The weather could not have been better and I wanted to get out for a little bike ride around the neighborhood. I did just that - a tiny bike ride around Williamsburg, headed straight for Brooklyn Brewery, where I made some new friends...

new friends @ Brooklyn Brewery

Beer is for champions!
Me, Tyronne and his gf, Maria

making friends wherever I go. (I swear I'm really not a people person)

I look super adorabs here!

After hanging with my new peeps and enjoying a few beers, I left. On my way home, I rode up Berry St as I often do. And around North 12th what was that I heard? Did my ears deceive me?! Could they be playing tricks on me?! They were not. It was the unmistakable and sweet, sad, droning sound of bagpipes!!!

I pulled out my camera to get some video. It was dark, so you won't be able to see much of him, but you can hear him very well (in addition to me talking). Enjoy!

What a great end to a great night and a great *start* to many more trips to Brooklyn Brewery, nighttime bike rides and hopefully more encounters with the bagpiper of McCarren Park. I totes love my life.