This past Friday I finally got clipless pedals and biking shoes which gave me a new relationship with my vehicle. As I cruised down to the North End Friday night, gliding along through traffic and then later along the Charles, I felt a kind of oneness with this machine. Even when this connection toppled me to the pavement at stop lights when I couldn’t get me feet unclipped in time, I knew it was worth it. It’s when I’m on my bike that I feel I’m most fully here in Boston, then when I feel most able to figure out where I am.
If you walk around Allston Village, the neighborhood of Boston where I live, you may notice the graffiti and street art that appears on walls, lampposts, sidewalks, and just about any other public surface. No doubt these contribute to the slightly dumpy feel the neighborhood has, but they also can provide ongoing, dynamic commentary on what it means to live in this particular corner of the city.
A few days ago, I was walking through my neighborhood and noticed this image of a rat spray painted on the sidewalk. Bizarre, I thought. Why would someone take the time to create a stencil of a rat and then spray-painted it on a random section of sidewalk? Someone clearly has too much time on his or her hands. Or this person’s sense of humor is just absurd enough to make them represent our neighborhood’s rat problem in this form.