I’m madder than my scooter Tornado after I accidentally drive his wheels through a heaping pile of dog poop under the El on 86th Street over the fact that after all these years I still see (and drive over) heaping piles of dog poop on 86th Street — and a lot of other streets in Brooklyn.
Look, you all know that Ol’Carmine has been visiting The Hurst since back when horse poop was a bigger target for my young bare feet as I scampered down Bay 23rd Street. But something happened when they started paving this place and put up apartment buildings like my beloved Harway Terrace.
And that something was the domestication of a certain grey wolf, the babies of which are now, for reasons I’ll never understand, sleeping at the foot of my bed.
But that isn’t the only thing they’re doing — apparently they are eating our leftovers and pooping them out all over the place. And, despite the fact that their “owners” are required by law to pick up the stuff they leave behind (the solid stuff, anyway, but that’s a story for another column), I keep finding it everywhere I turn.
The worst part about all this is this isn’t the first time I’ve been complaining about this. Readers who somehow got through this column before I got an editor who truly understands me know that I’ve recounted the story of how the pooper-scooper law came to be more than a thousand times. In fact, I think they used to re-run the column every year on the anniversary of the law being passed.
So to those of you who have read the story before put a paper bag over your head or turn to the funny pages (do they still have those? Man, I miss “Pogo” and that bald kid and his dog), but for those of you who don’t know it, here we go again.
One day, this kid rides his bike through some dog poop, just like I do with Tornado on a semi-regular basis. He goes home and complains to his lawyer father, who says “there oughta be a law.” The dad got to talking about it with some of his pals and — wouldn’t you know it — the pooper scooper law came to be.
That lawyer’s name was Bernie Cohen, and he died of cancer about two years ago. I bring this up because I got one of those mails that you don’t have to put a stamp on the other day that told me all about Cohen and how he once helped fight a ticket a guy got for flying a kite too high over the Belt Parkway.
Wanna hear that story? No? Then cover your eyes because I’m going to tell it anyway.
It was a balmy, beautiful day in 1981 when this guy Larry Cuttita was flying his kite over by Bay Eighth Street really high in the sky. All of a sudden a police helicopter flies by, circles, and lands. The cop comes out and give Cuttita a ticket for flying his kite too high. Apparently, they are not supposed to be flown over 150 feet. The cop hands the guy a ticket, then hops back into his copter and flies away.
Don’t believe me? You can read it in the New York Times on the interweb. Use the Google to find it. I don’t know what channel it’s on, but its out there.
Well, Larry fought that ticket and won. And guess who helped him do it? You got it, Bernie Cohen.
So in honor of the great Mr. Cohen, who made me a little less likely to run over dog poop and our skys a little safer for kite flyers, I’m told they’re bringing the Relay for Life — to help raise money for cancer survivors and treatment — to Floyd Bennett Field.
The event is being held on June 2 at the Aviator Sports Complex from 2 pm to 10 pm. It is open to the public free of charge, and will include entertainment, food, raffles, and family activities. It will also include ceremonies to honor those that are fighting cancer, those that have survived cancer and those that have been lost to cancer.
The Luminaria Ceremony will be beginning around sundown, at which time participants will line the outdoor track with Luminaria Bags decorated and dedicated to each of the three categories of those affected by cancer. The lights will be turned off, and the candles will illuminate the night. That ceremony sponsored by the Peter C. Labella Chapel will be led by the FDNY Emerald Society Pipes and Drum Band.
All cancer survivors and their caregivers are invited to come and take part in the Survivors’ Reception, which is sponsored by my pals at the El Caribe, who are providing catering.
Additional Survivors Receptions are held at each of the three Relays in Brooklyn, including the Bay Ridge, Bensonhurst & Dyker Height Relay on June 23 at the Fort Hamilton Field. Their reception is sponsored by John M. Mancuso and Lioni Italian Heroes. Anyone interested in any of the events or attending the survivor receptions can find out more details by going to www.relayforlife.org, or by calling Nancy Colt at (718) 622–2492 ext 5134.
Screech at you next week!