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Sunday, August 23, 2009

The King, The Ghost Bikes, and the Birds of New York.

Well hello again everyone, and welcome back to a trip through the city. Thanks for hailing my humble taxi.

I would sincerely like to thank all of you who responded, and commented on my prior post and were generous enough to stop by Wonderful World Of Wieners and donated , read , or just became more aware of organ donors and the importance of being a donor.

Hallie wrote some really kind words about me and raffled off a couple of The King of New York Hacks shirts. She really did a great job in raising not only money and having people win all sorts of cool prizes from Red Sox tickets all the way down to my low level King Tee shirt, but most importantly she raised awareness in how important organ donation is. Great job Hallie and family, we admire you and applaud you for what you accomplished, so very impressive indeed.

Hallie is a very special person with a tremendous heart, and her family as well, since her Dad was the receiver of a heart himself !! She has one blog that is a sure to read each time you go there, and she has a great playlist of songs to listen to while visiting. Be sure to visit her again, The King does often.

So thank you all again for the kind comments, and the thoughtful words everyone left behind, especially about my mother...It was very well received.

So into the concrete jungle we go over thee Manhattan bridge on a hot day which we've been getting plenty of recently. Or rain. However no clouds in sight today as I click a nice clear shot with one of my fellow yellow brothers ahead of me !

I slowed down a bit underneath the tower to get this shot, the bridges look great on beautiful days...until you see the rust, and decay ..and well lets get off this damn bridge !!!

One of the thing I learned early on when I first started driving a taxi was about Ghost Bikes. I made a post about one that I called snow bike because it was summer and looked like snow on it only to be corrected by my fellow taxi brother and blogger NYCTaxiPhoto ( a taxi blog you must visit with fantastic photos of the city ) that Ghost Bikes are small and somber memorials for bicyclists who are killed or hit on the street. A bicycle is painted all white and locked to a street sign near the crash site, accompanied by a small plaque. This is right over the Manhattan bridge on the Manhattan side and is a very chaotic traffic intersection.

Usually they don't have a picture, however this one did. His name is Sam Hindy and he was only 27 years young. The son of the founder of Brooklyn Brewery was killed after he fell while bicycling on the upper level of the Manhattan Bridge and plunged in front of a car on the lower roadway. Way too young poor guy.

There is an actual website that is covering all the Bicycle deaths around the world to create a reminder that we all travel these dangerous streets together and that we should be mindful of it. . This sight covers many countries.

This is the plaque and poor Sam's tragedy was on a Friday night.

This is the entrance to the bridge from the Manhattan side.

...and at late late night, a serene beautiful sight without the chaos of the day. Peace Sam, and all other bicyclists, be careful out there....

And to all the Kamikaze bike messengers who hold on to my side mirrors to pick up speed sometimes !!! Knock it off ya assholes ya might kill yourself !!!!

OK, now the King had a case of double vision which lasted a couple of days so I couldn't drive and had to figure out why the hell I was seeing two of everything and I hadn't even had a drop of Guinness yet !!! (I Wore an eyepatch which made me see fine so I could drive to the hospital)

This was indeed a dilemma. So the day I was seeing double they did a cat scan on me which was fine, however my blood pressure was a little high, so they said that may have caused it, but to get an MRI. Unfortunately when you work on Wall St...stress is part of the game, and maybe I was having too much of it so I took a few days away from it, and to get an MRI ...and to relax.

When lo and behold I park my car near the hospital , and when I'm walking I see a Wild Turkey !!! This is Staten Island I'm in now , WILD FRIGGIN' TURKEYS ?!?!?!?!?!? OK , I think , first double vision and NOW Turkeys !!! I'm HALLUCINATING !!! WTF !!! WHY ME ?!?!?!?

So, I thought I'd just go along with my hallucination and enjoy know, be one with all of them and they would welcome me into this rafter of turkeys. Yes that is the correct collective noun for a group of turkeys, just makin' sure you didn't fall asleep on me yet. Rafter..yup , who knew ?? We all know now !!


Well if you're going to hallucinate, I'm thinking Thanksgiving will be a cool ride...I 'll pretend I'm a pilgrim, no "stuffing" me into an MRI machine !! I'll be the one doing the stuffing !!! This guy was making me hungry !!

Now I've seen pigeons being fed bread crumbs and oblivious to crowds of people in this crazy city... but NEVER a "rafter" of Turkeys !!! Hanging out at a Hot Dog stand !!! No park benches and bread crumbs for these gobblers, they want some New York Hot Dogs !!!!! The King had a few words with my new found friends, but they were interested in better things.


Now this guy...He is the one I want to see in November !! Big New York Bird !!!

So I casually walked back to my car, thinking of the MRI technician saying he did see a brain in my head, but was not authorized to tell me if there was anything wrong it...So I figured I might as well keep talking to Turkeys since for now It's kind of a free pass to do so without them sending me to a psych ward !!! So at another Hot Dog stand on the other side of Staten Island Hospital, I found some more friends, although they thought the King was a Turkey anyway !


So later that evening as I was relaxing watching the Live News at 10pm, they were talking of rising rents and blah blah blah ...and Santa Claus coming in the middle of the night.. I saw the most famous of New York City birds. THE Bird. The flip. The finger. The ole middle salute. The FU. Beautiful when you see it Live...not later like now on the you tube I put it was a glorious bird, and I laughed my ass off because I kept rewinding it and seeing their funny faces which you can do with the new cable we have...kinda like freeze framing dvd movies to see the stupid faces the actors make sometimes. My whole family was laughing and kept rewinding, so I got my camera clicked a few pics and recorded it as well. The dude who flipped the bird has the ultimate flip off face. it comes , upper right hand corner...

almost making into the full frame of the scene.....

Now he's on TV giving all of New York the ole FUCK YOU !

He tries for better positioning...

She looks like she making a fish face here !! LOL

Shocked face newscaster and the smugness face of Birdman....he has a B on his shirt too !! LOL

Captain B , The Birdman of New York City !!

She did keep her cool , but not when we freeze frame !!

Rising rents...crooked politicians....who the hell knew what she was talking about when all we saw was this !!! Too funny !! I checked online at the TV stations sight and it was edited out.

The King got it though !!

So in closing, summer is almost over and the fall is almost here which is a part of the year I really love to drive around in. I may post a couple of small items , but September 11 is just around the corner and if you haven't read my tribute from last year, please do. 9/11 the King and Today , My tour of Ground Zero and Battery Park. Leave me a comment on what you think, or something you might want to see a picture of and I'll do my best to get it. I will be doing the same walk with some new thoughts , and hopefully pictures of much progress.

I'll keep it light until then, just think of those crazy ass Staten Island Turkeys to make ya laugh, enjoy the rest of the summer, be careful on your bicycles and as my friend and fellow blogger FreddyBeachCabby always says Please Don't Drink And Drive....Visit Freddy, he has had personal loss due to someone drinking and driving and he has a heart of gold, so those words are for real and we need to take them to heart.

Call a friend, get on a bus, get in a cab, just don't drink and drive brothers and sisters, its not worth it, we're having too much fun together without putting ourselves and others at risk.

I'm not preaching to ya, I 'm just a Double Vision Turkey Talking Taxi Hack that some refer to as....... The King Of New York Hacks. Peace all.


  1. Your blog is always a surprise! Never know what to expect - Ghost Bikes, turkeys, rusted bridges ... yes, a fine posting.

  2. Wow!
    A Tour (of NYC) de Force!
    Turkeys, ghost bikes, great bridge shots!

    What can I say? You've got it ALL!

    Here in Waikiki, all that looks pretty exotic, my taxi brother.

    Comfort Spiral

  3. I look so forward to your posts!

    Sorry I can't donate organs anymore...that nasty cancer crap.

    The turkey is classic, but not as much as the flipping bird guy!!!

    As always, YOU ARE AWESOME!!!!

  4. I totally thought of you this morning when I cussed out a guy who was supposed to yield to me and didn't. Then he flipped me the bird....He looked a lot like the bird flipper in your scene.....

    And I had no idea about the ghost bikes! I'm always EXTRA careful around bikers (bicycles and motorcycles). Once you've experienced a loss from either of those.....

    Organ donation rocks too!

    Love that you thought you were hallucinating about the birds!

    I could go on and on and on....

  5. Excellent! I was there too back when I lived in SI earlier this year, and the health clinic was nearby, seeing those turkeys made my day!

  6. I love the turkeys. In Staten Island, who knew right?

    Bicyclists need to be so careful as do the cars around them. That is one huge advantage to Europe - there are bike lanes on every street. My husband is a serious cyclist and I know he is a very safe rider. It's the people driving the cars that scare me.

    If I come up to NY soon (I'm only a short ride away in Philly) I'll have to try to find your cab to get a firsthand account of the turkeys.

  7. My parents are coming in October and my dad was a firefighter for 35 years (on the West Coast) I think he'd love to see Ground Zero. From your post you linked, what's the best place to start and where can tourists go? (I haven't been to that part of the city since 9/11)

    If you can email me or leave a comment on my blog (I'd appreciate it!)
    bloggingmamaandrea @

  8. The pics are great!I enjoy seeing different pics.I would like to see more pics of NY.
    As for the turkeys! HA! Nice shot.LOL! Now the finger.The good ole mid finger.LMAO! I tell ya,people do anything now to get on tv.HA!HA!
    I know how you feel about losing someone.I lost my cousin along time ago due to a hit and run. Everyone needs to watch their driving.WE ALL HAVE TO SHARE THE ROAD.

  9. This is kind of creepy... i took my new bike out today...I'm a little stubborn about wearing my helmet, anyway, it was a beautiful day...

    My hubs gets a call that someone we knew was hit by a drunk driver today...while she was riding her bike...So sad, she is in a coma.

    You're post just sealed the deal for me...I'm a little worried about taking my bike out again...I will surely wear my helmet next time. that night shot...

  10. Ghost bikes. . . wow, that is surreal. I think it has much more impact than the little crosses along the sides of the roads.

    Turkeys? And that Birdman. . . how funny or bad or inappropriate. . . his 15 seconds of fame has been sealed in history right here. . . EXTRA EXTRA read all about it!

    Now about drinking and driving, I lost my Dad to a drunk driver when I was 20. I encourage everyone to call a cab, or me. . . . I'll be happy to drive someone home. No life should be taken due to drunk driving.

  11. Greetings King!

    Thanks for sharing your comments with me.
    ; ) Nice photos here~


  12. I used to love to take my bike everywhere in good weather. Early this summer, I was sideswiped by a texting teen. I no longer take my bike.

    And personally, I think B boy is a dork.

  13. I couldn't let go of the Ghost Bike phenomenon while reading the rest of your post because IMHO, it says it all to the onlooker.

    Great shots of the bridge!

  14. The King tshirts are anything BUT low level my friend!! John can't wait to get the one you are sending him!! :) (Crap..did I ever give you our sizes? Damn, I hate getting old and not remembering stuff. If I'm this brain dread at 39, can you imagine when I hit 40?)

    Thank you from the very bottom of my heart (and my Dad's new heart) for every single word you wrote in this post and the one where you asked people to take part in my fundraiser. You have been an instrumental part in me reaching my goal.

    Your kindness and generosity of spirit amaze me. I am honored to "know" you and plan to some day give you a big thank you hug in person. My SIL lives in NYC so I do get there once in awhile.

    This entire endeavor has been wonderful and I have been awed by the support I have received. Organ donation allows my father to live each new day. I can't say enough about the importance of giving what you truly DON'T need to take with you.


    I plan to continue doing EVERYTHING I possibly can to raise awareness about the greatest gift one can give. My fundraiser ( will remain open until Dec 11th and I STRONLGY encourage people to continue to give what they can. Even a single dollar makes a difference. I can't tell you how good it can feel to know that you gave to a cause that actually CAN SAVE LIVES.

    I look forward to reading the letter I wrote the donor family ( at the Maine State Donor Recognition Ceremony in Sept as a way to say thank you to all those families that gave of their loved ones to save another. My Dad will be sitting there with me. Can you imagine a more powerful moment?

    King, you amaze me.

    Thank you for every ounce of support and friendship you have given me.

    You are truly a gem.

    aka Wiener Woman

  15. You never cease to be amazing KING!
    Too damn funny about the turkeys and the bird...I saw a turkey cousin up in the Pocono's this past weekend...he sends his regards! :D

    Only in NEW YORK...Birdmen/women rule! LOL

    On a somber note...I too had an uncle whom I never meet because a year before I was born he was also killed by a DRUNK (teenage) Driver while he was riding his bike! And back in the 50's no one wore a helmet... :(

    Peace & LOVE to the KING (remembering Woodstock) :)

  16. Hope to hear that your double vision is nothing serious but just from having (two) much fun!

  17. It is a coincidence you mention September 11, I was just talking about it and what it resulted in, to my next door neighbor here.
    Your post from last year brought back memories of the three falls I spent in New York.
    Laughed through the first half of your post, before you started on a more sombre topic.

  18. That isn't fair. You have more Turkeys on Staten Island than I do in rural Missouri. I'm looking forward to Fall, too, although we've been having some Fall-like weather already, which is really strange.

    Those ghost bikes cause for pause. I recently posted about the biking trail we have here and the one thing I didn't mention is that even though we have a trail for bicyclists that extends from one corner of the state to the other, they ride on the road right next to the trail. This is purely recreational - it isn't like they are dependent on it to get from point A to point B. It's crazy I tell you!

    Great post. I'll keep checking back for more and am looking forward to the 9/11 post.

  19. ..*hahaha!! haha!*... ooohhmygod King, you made me laff so harrdd with this post! Turkeys chillin' at a NY hotdog stand! I want some of whatever you're smokin! *haha!*
    * ; )
    And the BIRDMAN! His matter-of-fact persistence is just hillarious. What will you do with your moment in the spotlight...? I'm gonna FLIP OFF ALL OF NYC!!! YEAH BABY!!!
    Thanks for the giggles...

  20. Bah! I don't know why... I just keep giggling- good stuff!

  21. I always watch for a new post from you. But never n a million years did i ever expect a turkey! What a hoot!
    Thanks a million.

  22. What a great read! thank you! I'll be thinking of ghost bikes and wild turkeys on Staten Island (reminds me of the raccoon on top of a highrise in the middle of Toronto some years ago) all day...


  23. Ok, so awesome pictures first of all.

    And the fuck off face might have been the brightest part of my otherwise dreary day. Thank you, oh great, and wise and benevolent king you!

  24. Oh wow, that ghost bike made me choke up. How sad.

  25. It's a shame when someone so young dies, not that I want the old to go but the future is still ahead of the young.

    However, I do appreciate your bringing together the birds of a different feather. I've heard they flock together. I'm pretty sure the bird the President pardons gives the press corp his own bird.

  26. I have just discovered your blog and I love it! It is so interesting and I like the way you write and the pictures are so beautiful. I have been in NYC back in 1984 and fell in love with that City.
    Lots of greetings from Germany, Susanne

  27. Who would have guessed they fatten turkeys with hot dogs?

    And as far as bird sitings go, you captured the best. One for the Audubon Society!

    Glad you still gotta brain. Update us after the radiologist reports back.

  28. Wow, you toured us once again around various NY stuffs.. very random and that makes your post really cool!