“Ridiculous Note” on Berkeley Place

more-eggs-please writes in the Park Slope Message Boards:

“I was walking my dog along Berkeley Pl betwen 6th and 7th last night around 11 pm and came across the following ridiculous typed note taped to a bicycle seat. The bike was locked to a street cleaning sign next to the street:”

” ‘Please chain your bike to a different location,’ the note read in 18-point Times New Roman. ‘We’ve checked and we are liable if anyone trips over your biked and falls on our property. Thank you for your understanding.’ ”

“Is it just me or is this totally absurd? First of all, the bike was in no way obstructing anyone’s passage on the sidewalk in front of the two buildings it was straddling (which begs the question: whose property is this bike on, anyway?)”

“I was tempted to throw myself over the bike and scream for help and threaten to sue the owners of the building(s) since I felt they deserved such an inconvenient consequence for having such a stupid issue with this bike. Instead, I peeled off the note from the bike’s seat and took it home. Alas, the note was REPLACED (this time with even more tape) by the time my husband walked by the same spot this morning.”

“Does anyone else think these people are INSANE? This is in front of 109-111 Berkeley. Is this what PS is turning into? Would these people prefer to see more cars than bikes? Or, are they saying they’d rather this person park his/her bike in front of a neighbor’s house instead of theirs? I don’t think that’s very neighborly at all.”

Regardless of what you think of the note, you have to admit that this is becoming a classic example of Brooklyn neighbor interaction – witness this note deposited, relatively recently, in the handlebar basket of a bike on Park Place:

Agree to Disagree in the Park Slope Message Boards

5 Replies to ““Ridiculous Note” on Berkeley Place”

  1. obviously you’ve never been served papers before. it’s a harrowing, costly and time-consuming affair. since the mayor has put the onus back on building owners to take care of the sidewalks up to 18″ beyond the curb in order to save the city $$$ in lawsuits every year leaving a friendly note seems both fair and practical.

  2. Are you saying you think the city would “serve papers” for failing to shoo away this bike? On what grounds? The bike was locked, parked in a way that did not block pedestrian traffic, and secured to public property in a way that did not violate any city laws or ordinances.

  3. ah, no. the city wouldn’t serve papers but a litigous individual’s lawyer would. it is now the buildings owner or owners responsibility for any sidewalk lawsuits. why you might ask? here is a UPI story from dec. of 2005:

    NEW YORK, Dec. 3 (UPI) — Despite a promise to cut the amount of money paid by taxpayers for slip-and-fall cases against New York City, the city paid about $70 million last year.

    Payouts for sidewalk lawsuits totaled $68.2 million, for an average $30,637 for the 2,226 cases awarded in the last fiscal year. That compared to $71.6 million for 2,581 cases, an average of $27,741, for the previous fiscal year, the New York Daily News reported Saturday.

    now as one of those taxpayers who does not own a building i find that paying out 70 MILLION DOLLARS is outrageous. now, if you follow, without actually owning a building i can actually empathize with owners who leave quaint notes regarding the potential for litigation. so sorry you were put off by such a sentiment.

  4. I just moved back to Brooklyn after living in San Francisco for 2 years, and while I no longer live in Park Slope (thanks to all the affluent Manhattan ex-pats who drove up the prices!), I can’t believe that my old neighborhood is becoming as ridiculous as San Francisco is vis a vis the vigilante note-leavers! Seriously, I know that Park Slope is cooler than Jersey, but just because you want to raise kids somewhere reasonably safe and can’t afford to live in Manhattan, don’t bring the suburban mentality to what was not-so-long-ago a rich and interesting gem of the city.

  5. I live on Fourth St between 6th & 7th. My own view is that whenever you see a note, you should immediately piss all over it.

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