Thursday, February 12, 2009


1) While riding down the WSB, I smelled a sulfur smell around after 23rd St. This is nothing out of the ordinary, I've caught this wind from this location before. It's slightly interesting, though, given that a bout 8 blocks later I glanced to my left to see a woman use the end of a park bench as the platform from which she got rid of her excess liquid.

- First time I've seen a woman excrete publicly*.

2) While in the Mid-manhattan Library, I stopped at the self-check kiosk to accouter myself for the trip back south. I apparently walked up on the end of an encounter between a seemingly Asian woman and and, I believe, a south Asian man.

Her: "But why make a racial comment? I mean 'go back to China'?... I'm not even Chinese."

- First time seeing two people at the self-check kiosk at the same time.

3) The Raleigh has been feeling particularly lively the past couple rides, today included. I decided to stay on the avenues rather than peddle all the way back to the WSB. I got to Houston and found a non-cobble-paved road that I thought I'd not tried before. I took it and crossed over Houston, picking up a fair bit of speed. I looked up and saw a lady jaywalking, and, not seeing any cars, either assume she was going to beat me or just didn't take notice of me. I assumed she'd continue and went to pass behind her. She suddenly decided to become attentive and was startled and started to hop back.......putting her BACK into my path. I stopped short of her and moved past in front of her as she exclaimed something involving an expletive. I shouted back over my shoulder, "Baby, if you gonna cross, CROSS".
I came to the red light at the next intersection (that I'm sure I would've passed had I not had to slow down) and stopped**.
Now, what I didn't realize about the path I'd taken is that it was an exit point for a Jersey tunnel. These are one of the most dangerous types of traffic feature you'll encounter in the city. There is heavy traffic, which really isn't so bad. In fact that's usually better because you can move through it while it crawls. Another problem, is that they tend to be forks where people can make a hard turn, or veer in the direction of that turn, or go straight - it's harder to read what people are going to do****.
As I was going straight through the intersection, a white Suburban approached attempting a left hand turn across my path.
Which is fine, except he didn't seem to have to wait for me to get a cross the intersection first.
There was a moment of hesitation where I thought he was going to hold off realizing that I was coming, but, like some many people during evening rush*, he saw pull back a little and moved forward anyway.
I knew the hit was coming***.
Halfway through the hit, I knew wasn't going to be hurt.
After the knockdown-barrel-roll-into-standing (if you're going to go down, get up fly), my worry was whether the bike was ok.
I thought we'd both gotten away with just some scratches, I realized that the back wheel was out of true - but not bent. THAT I made sure to check afore I let cousin leave the scene.

- First bike/moving vehicle "interaction". Thank you that it wasn't anything I couldn't walk away from.

May it be the last.


You mean I never mentioned the time I was headed back to the Times Square station from Times Sqr Arts Center when, right after I turned the corner a dude leaned against a building, pulled down his trousers and shot off a Saturn V rocket squeeze? I was certain he achieve lift.

** I'm one of those few people who stops for red lights while walking and riding. I go through if it's clear, but I don't sit there halfway in the street waiting for the slightest opening to run (unless it calls for it). I let traffic have their if they cross me on mine, I feel no remorse about giving them both barrels of indignation about it.

*** Every time that I've been hit by a moving vehicle, I knew it was coming. Once while at a stop sign in Texas, I saw the lady behind me not looking up while creeping forward...(bump). I The ones you see, you can work through. It's the ones you don't that can muss your hair. Ergo, keep your eyes open and your head moving. You more likely to miss them altogether that way. Anyway.

**** And, to make it worse, it was evening rush. Worst rush of the day. Had I realized what time it was, I would've gone to the bike path. Mos def.

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