This weekend is the 5th annual Rumble thru the Bronx. An alleycat so intriguing even the New Yorkers feel like “out-of-towners.” This is a really fun race which winds its way all over this twisted borough which many participants have never step foot in. Racers often trade in their fixies for the more practical road bike due to the lengthy terrain. Its a race where knowledge of the streets is such a factor that they post all the checkpoints in advance and groups of participants even ride the course in preparation.
Hodari, Mike Dee and their crew due an excellent job of putting on this race which always includes a beach party afterwards on city island and amazing food by Roz. There’s nothing like home-made food after a grueling 26 mile race.
One minute your gathering for critical mass trying to figure out which guy in a giants baseball cap and red sweat band is a “plain clothes” cop. The next minute “poof.” Union square suddenly is surrounded by fences and its not just to keep a large group of people from going on a bike ride. Bad Dream? Nope just another day in the never end struggle to keep our diminishing public space out of the hands of developers and utilized for what its meant to be…p-u-b-l-i-c s-p-a-c-e.
This is the case with the South side of Union square in case you were wondering what the bulldozer monster track rally was going on down there.
There is a Vandal in Williamsburg…not this kind of vandal, who smashes windows to bust into your car, which I saw while riding down Roebling Street yesterday. Nope this Vandal, A radio controlled giraffe writes Vandal with a paint brush in its mouth on the Roebling Tea house in Williamsburg Brooklyn.
This is the work of legendary street artist from Bristol U.K, Banksy. Most famously known for this piece in Brighton of two cops making out. The stencil artist has become so well know for his creations that people were arrested for painting over one of the pieces and charged with criminal damage.
More of his work can be scene here: artofthestate and Banksy.com This is big money for these contemporary artists. Banksy was in town to sell some art at a big auction house, according to Animalnewyork.com. Oh yeah, he does work on canvas since its hard getting giant city walls sold off, unless your a big time developer. While in NYC, the artist was able to put up a couple more pieces around. Like this one in Williamsburg on South 3rd St. Razorapple a great photo blog on NYC street culture has a nice report on these antics including artist who paint with fire extinguishers and paint enormous male members on our city walls.
I guess proximity is also playing a role in these street artists affairs. Shepard Fairy, the obey guy who started by placing Andre the Giant has a posse stickers all over the world, has parled his work into a major operation. His street team is still at it and I noticed these two pieces in the hood on my little impromptu street art exploration.
Zipcar, the hip car rental company, asked the artist in a news letter if he wanted to get involved in some cross-promotion. Why? cause he put up his art near where people pick up zip cars? He could just as easily do something for King Kog, the bike shop in which he put this piece up. Seems like he’s more down with a better environment and focusing our dependence on oil with art like this on Broadway, near Union Square. Notice the couple in the background making out.
Here’s another nice piece done by neither artist, near King Kog on Hope Street…look I somehow made this bicycle related:
Now remember this is “ART,” and not your repetitive random graffiti tagging which the Mayor will send his clean up team for. Which does nothing but make fresh canvases for the future Harings, Basquiat, Banksy and Fairy’s of the future.
Banksy had a nice comment on graffiti removal…Photo by Greenwood100 from flickr Perhaps these art projects on walls are the future cave paintings giving insight into a primitive society. Personally I find them more creative and pleasing to the eye then when you randomly turn a corner as see something like this… to sell underwear. (photo by: Equalizer on flickr.com.)
Ok, so we’ve seen clowns in the bike lane, we’ve seen polar bears on bikes, Now its time for dogs on bikes. What better way to help abandon pets in NYC who are locked up all day inside, than take them out into traffic, plunked on the front of baskets on bicycles
Get Ready for the too cute for words:
THE FIRST ANNUAL DOGGIE PEDAL PARADE.
TimeÂ’s Up! ride will highlight bicycles adapted to transport pets as well as the benefits of adopting homeless animals.
WHAT: Time’s Up! Doggie Pedal Parade WHEN: Saturday, May 17, 2008 at 2 PM WHERE: Traffic island on south end of Union Square East between Broadway & 4th Ave
New York, NY (May 14, 2008) Â– On Saturday, May 17th, bicyclists will use baskets and trailers to take their dogs along for the ride in the TimeÂ’s Up! first annual Doggie Pedal Parade. The bicycle ride will demonstrate environmentally friendly ways to transport pets around the city and will include parade floats pulled by bicycles and decorated to honor selected animal rescue groups. The ride route will feature animal adoption sites and animal friendly locations.
Cyclists without dogs are encouraged to ride dressed as their favorite animals or to join the Safety Pooch Patrol to help escort the ride. Spectators are encouraged to join the cheering sections at selected points along the route, such as the Animal Haven Adoption Center at 251 Centre St, and are invited to meet at the end of the ride for snacks and drinks at a doggie celebration near the Washington Square Park dog run at Washington Square South and Sullivan Street. Fred, the dog who was adopted from the ASPCA and went on to star in the most recent Broadway production of Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, will be signing pawtographs
To prevent any Ruff Riding and for the fun and safety of the group, non-social pets are asked to stay at home.
Supporters of the ride include ASPCA, League of Humane Voters of New York City, MayorÂ’s Alliance for NYC’s Animals and Rational Animal.
Here is my weekly roundup of whats going on in the bicycle blog world:
Remember tomorrow is Bike to Work day. If you have no work, tomorrow is bike to look for a job day, or bike to the local coffee shop and blog about biking to work or bike around Prospect Park, cause obviously those people are doing something right cause they can bike before work…all day long.
Squids NYC messenger company Cyclehawk posted the results of Velocity in San Francisco.
VELO CITY HELLYER 2008 RESULTS WOMEN 1) Megan 2) Dorit 3) Colleen
CITY BIKER MEN 1) Steven 2) Andres 3) Jack
MESSENGER MEN 1) Fergus 2) Deuce 3) Maurice
This was the third and final installment of the Velocity tour which is a velodrome track day where urban riders and messengers can compete to win tickets to the Cycle World Messenger Championships which are in Toronto this year…in June.
Squid and his crew, really put their heart and soul into this event and give people an amazing opportunity to compete in cycling on track bikes, where they were meant to be…the track. Check here for some pix.
Congratulations Fergus…you going to TORONTO!!
Squid Want to say THANKS to Mike and Hellyer Velodrome for volunteering your time and the track! And all the sponsors who made Velocity happen…
What, do I have to read every blog out there about biking?
Thanks to Hubs and Spokes, a very thorough blog on NYC transportation issues, I learned that the NY Times blog,
made space for us New Yorkers to Ask this guy questions. who is this guy? This clean cut dapper fellow is: Joshua Benson, the bicycle program coordinator for the Department of Transportation. I know what your thinking, the DOT has a bicycle program coordinator? Yes its true and besides having to wear a tie, you get to oversee the three year plan to extend the 200 mile bicycle network. Here are some of the answers to the questions asked.
May 14th, 2008 | Category: General | Comments are closed