22 June 2023

Voices Of My Rides

In "Sounds of Silence," Paul Simon wrote, "the words of the prophets are written the on the subway walls."

I've been riding daily and haven't been on the subway.  But I have seen, if not the words of the prophets, then at least expressions of the zeitgeist, if from different points of view.

During my Saturday ride to Point Lookout, I chanced upon this in Lido Beach:

I don't think I've seen such a large US flag anywhere else, let alone in front of a suburban house.  When I stopped to take the photo, I talked to a man walking his dog.  He said the house is "outsize for this neighborhood" and that he's seen "the flag more than the people who live there."  I quipped that I've lived in apartments smaller than that flag.

Not only is its size overwhelming:  It's placed so that in whichever direction you walk, ride or drive, you can't not see it.

As I've said in earlier posts, ostentatious displays of outsized flags--often seen on the back of "coal rollers"--seem less like expressions of patriotism and more like acts of aggression.

In contrast, during yesterday afternoon's ride down the waterfront, from my Astoria apartment to Red Hook, I saw something more inclusive on one of the last ungentrified blocks of Long Island City.

The author of that bit of graffiti, I suspect, also gave us this:

That person is not the enemy of the flag-flaunters and coal-rollers--and would surely know that I'm not, either. 

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