So last night, again I had the unfortunate experience of young black kids with nothing better to do seeking to take my bike. After last year’s experience of some kids throwing a sledge hammer at me in an attempt to take my bike during my evening commute, 4 kids tried to again take my bike.
It seems, their strategy is to put fear in the biking commuter. Biking up St. Pauls St right by Penn Station, one kid wearing a ski-mask tried to unsuccessfully push me off balance while biking in the opposite direction of me. I use a relatively heavy mountain bike in the streets of the city so his feeble push did not move me much. The next thing I saw was a child putting a black hand gun he was waiving into his belt to try to throw me off mentally. I identified it as a black bb gun designed to look realistic. Also, having been held up in my past by a real hand gun, it looked way too light to be a real gun, but it definitely held my attention.
Then the actual kid that wanted to take my bike jumped off his bike and tried to push me off my bike and shouted “get off the bike” and tried to strike me on my head. He hit my bike helmet and I believe his hand must have hurt though I felt nothing through the helmet. His buddy asked him “are you all right?” as he went back to his bike.
I shouted “Don’t you guys have anything better to do?” in an authoritative voice! Three of the boys immediately took off and the one that struck me got on his bike and tried to bike off. I saw him fall off his broke down bike about 100 yards away and looked to be in a panic to get his bike to move again.
I stopped for a few seconds trying to decide what to do. Should I make chase and have the police catch them so that they get put in juvenile detention and continue to go down the spiral of violence and crime? Or should I catch up to the kid that struck me and try to talk to him and try to convince him there are better things to do than to try and steal bikes from evening commuters.
In the end, accepting my inability to shift this particular situation, I chose to just shrug my shoulders at the imbalance in the world and bike on.
Lunar New Year 2016 just began, and the mischievous monkey has shown its naughty face reminding us to be mindful and aware every where we go.