October 16, 2005
Sidewalk Riders and Dumpster Divers
This weekend was the St. Paul Art Crawl. Besides displaying artwork and helping my daughter and her friends get into their display space, we had an open-house at the bike shop. I'd say about 50 people who had never been there came in to chat and see what our community bike shop was all about. Everybody was really positive and in a good mood.
Because of a chain of events, I was busy the whole time and dead tired until about 9:30am this morning when I got up. Haha, it's hard to be a morning person when you don't get in until 3:00am! I'll probably need a nap this afternoon too, but I'm going to resist.
Today I have to go clean up from the art showing then tonight I'm going to see a play at the Walker, so it should be a good day.
Last night the Art Crawl officially ended at 6pm, but there was a special event going on next door at the club so I hung around and saw that. There was a fund-raiser and preview of this movie about Urban Exploring, this group of people who go to unusual places and take photos. For instance down in the sewers and in the depths of abandoned munitions plants. The photos were cool and they talked about the adventure of trying to get these photos. They all were really good photographers and the film was well done.
Also, I kind of wanted to hang around to see how Terry and Tom did while driving the Pedal Taxis. They were running people around for the whole Art Crawl, plus at this party to drive people to and from their parking spots. It was cool. They had fun driving and made a little bit of cash. In this city it would not be a good way to make a living because I don't think it could generate enough income. Not bad though for a part-time gig.
About 1:30am they packed up the cabs and called it a night. Then we hang out and talked until about 2:00am. Tom and I rode together part of the way, since we were going the same general direction. First we stopped at SA to pick up something to eat. He bought a shrinkwrapped he-man sandwich, because he said it's the only one that had enough stuff on it. Evidently two of those can last him all night. But tonight he only bought one. I got two-hot dog for a buck special and a juice and we sat outside by the dumpsters eating. That's when Tom noticed the bag of food sitting next to the dumpster torn apart. He informed me that it was from dumpster divers getting something to eat. The station/store owner threw out the old food from the sales cases and someone had come to pick through it to find something they wanted to eat. The sandwiches and salads and other items were still all wrapped and all of them were in a white plastic garbage bag so it looked like it would make a feast, but I don't know. It seems if the store threw them out, they must have been past their expiration date and sitting outside in a dumpster unrefrigerated didn't apeal to me. Maybe if they got there right after the food was thrown in the dumpster. It's funny because I met a guy at the party who told me that he lives like that and never pays for food. He must know all the good spots to get thrown-out food. He looked pretty healthy to me. Now I had a visual refrerence for what it's like to dumpster dive for food, this white plastic bag laying on the pavement torn open, wrapped food spilling out and looking like a deli. We finished eating and then rode on.
I let Tom lead and he proceeded to ride up on the sidewalk downtown, on the left side of the road. This went against all that I know about how I should ride my bike. But I just followed and experienced night-time sidewalk riding. There was nobody out there besides us, we could have ridden our bikes down the center of the road, but both Terry and Tom like to ride on the sidewalk to avoid cars. In the dark it's especially interesting because you have to watch for obstacles like poles and building pillars and benches. And we were moving along at a pretty good clip, not even stopping for the red lights at intersections (there was nobody around) The rules for sidewalk riders are different. It's an attitude of not only owning the road but also any rideable surface. They must have gotten that from the skateboarders ;-) And Tom was very proficient at sidewalk riding.
We got to my turn-off and I headed home. Tonight I got to know Terry and Tom better. I also got to know a few other people while hanging out waiting for the end of the festivities. So it was a good night. Now it's time for coffee.
Have a great day!
Posted by carl1236 at October 16, 2005 10:30 AM | Love your Neighbor