Friday, March 4, 2011
Our city's streets are in an abysmal condition and I may have to complain to Silly Hall. From what I've heard on the radio, thousands have phoned in to voice their displeasure at the city's snow removal or lack thereof.
My commute last night wasn't too bad until I was half way home. Then the fit hit the shan. I walked a good part of the way home as I couldn't stay upright on my two wheeled steed. What incensed me the most was the fact that a seventeen block long bike path along 100 Avenue had not been cleared at all. A skinny, loosely packed trail made by pedestrians was the only path leading me home. So I switched over to the other side of the avenue where home owners had cleared the sidewalks. (I have a confession to make. In the winter I ride on the sidewalks even though it is against the law).
Riding on cleared sidewalks got me to thinking that the city can fine a property owner for not clearing the walks adjacent to their property - but what about citizens fining the city for not living up to their responsiblities and clearing their walks? As I rode along, I imagined a bylaw enforcement officer ticketing a property for not having their walks cleared and that owner organizing a movement to oppose such a blasphemous act. Citizens armed with protest signs converging on City Hall, residents out on the streets measuring the depth of snow on nearby sidewalks. Pencils in hand, scribbling infractions onto "CITY BYLAW INFRACTIONS" tickets and marching down to hand in the infractions to their councilperson.
I can see the Yahoo news story headline "Citizens Fine City For Lack of Snow Removal" as this movement gains in poularity and begins to spread across the nation. Sounds like something that would come out of California or Oregon.
Meanwhile I dodge snowbanks taller than my head and I duck underneath tree branches laden with tons of snow that with the merest twitch will send a cascade of ice cold snow down my neck. The ride takes twice as long as normal and after two hours, I'm happy to snag an "adult" drink out of the fridge and relax knowing I don't have to exercise this evening.