September/October 1997, p.19

Street Dirt

Anyone who may have witnessed a bike "accident" at 7:30 pm on July 7 in Central Park (during car-free hours on a Monday) should contact T.A. with details. The cyclist, who woke up in the hospital with no memory of what happened, ended up with several broken bones on the left side of his body when something happened by the Boat House on the eastern Loop Road. Though the police report stated that no other vehicle was involved, the cyclist learned second-hand that a taxi may have I been there. He needs your help, so call T.A.

A visiting cyclist from Germany S was mugged at gunpoint on an August Saturday afternoon on the GWB bridge. Two men grabbed the guy as he was riding around one of the towers and pistol-whipped him, splitting his ear and busting his helmet before bolting with his $3500 mountain bike. According to the cops, this is the first report of aggravated assault on the GWB. Another crime spot: The East River Promenade at 116th Street by the FDR overpass, where there've been several reports this summer of teenage boys slashing cyclists as they ride by. Beware.

On a happier note: An elderly civic-minded Chinese gentle- man was spotted sweeping up broken glass from the Brooklyn-side exit of the Brooklyn Bridge. Setting his bike aside, he did the job with pieces of scattered cardboard. Thank you, sir.

Overheard on the Downtown #1 train on a crowded after- noon at Times Square: The conductor said, "Hey, will you please make room for the lady with the bike!" as an old lady with a funky two-wheeler tried to squeeze on.

Happy 60th Birthday to Alan Lowe, producer of "The Bike Show" on Manhattan's public access cable and this city's self-proclaimed oldest working (though his knees are admittedly a bit rusty) bike messenger.

Would TimeWarner Cable spring for a few more orange cones? When asked to help out by placing a few cones around the T-W truck parked smack dab in the 6th Ave. bike lane, the cable guy insisted that the company wouldn't give him enough cones. "And I don't want to get hit!" he said.

Overheard in a van shuttle in northern Manhattan: "I hate these damn bumps," said the driver about two new speed humps on Seaman Ave. next to Inwood Park. "The signs say 20 mph, but I have to slow down to ten!" Another driver on another day had this to say when a passenger said, "Don't these things drive you crazy?" "Yeah," he said, "but I'm real glad we have 'em. People drive like maniacs here, and there are lots of kids who live and play around here. These get folks to slow down like they should." WOW! Traffic-calming at work!!

-Friend of H.T.