Biking Through Manhattan

Biker Dude
Dear Bike Messenger,
Bike riding in the City is a fairly normal endeavor. Many New Yorkers get on their bike each day and set out either as couriers, for exercise or as a form of pleasure or transportation. Similar to the way New Yorkers walk and drive there is an art to bike riding. A majority of that talent involves getting to your destination as fast as possible while maneuvering in order to avoid getting hit. In response cars and pedestrians extend the same courtesy and we all peaceful co-exist in this strange dance on the island of Manhattan.
Until the other night.
When I was about ten-years old I was playing out in front of my apartment and had just stepped out of the grass and onto the sidewalk in my journey across the street to the neighbor’s house when this teenage boy and his gaggle of friends came whizzing by on their bike. The boy leading the pack didn’t see me step out into the sidewalk and couldn’t break or swerve fast enough to avoid hitting me. He ran right into me with his bike, knocking me breathless to the ground and flinging himself off his bike into the nearby patch of grass. My mother who had been watching the entire time from the kitchen window came flying out of the house and began whacking the teenage boy with her dish towel and ensuring he never forget to watch for little kids while riding his bike again (this was back in the days when a village used to raise a child). My mother helped me up from where I’d been run over and after cleaning up my scrapes and planting tender kisses on my bruises I was ready to begin playing again. That was the last time I got hit by a bike.
Until the other night.
I was walking out of Moe’s on the corner of Portland and Fulton Street in Fort Greene headed towards what will be the last weekend for Habana Outpost and had just stepped into the street in full preparation of crossing it when this biker came from my right side and ran directly into me. I blame it on the positioning of my foot not really being fully planted on the street after having stepped off the sidewalk but the biker knocked me completely over. One minute I was stepping off the curb and the next I was entangled with the biker on the street out in front of Moe’s.
The wind was completely knocked out of me and I was staring up at the pitch black sky. Slowly through a groan I rolled over to pick myself up and once I did I asked the biker:
“What happened?”
He gave me a blank look so I probed further,
“Did you run the light?”
“What light?”
I shook my head as he regathered his bike and I watched him ride away from me.
Did I just get hit by a bike?
Love always,
Sunny

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