What's up in the Neighborhood

The NeighborhoodAmong the topics in this most recent spin around the Capital Region's online neighborhood: a transition, crossing the street, dealing with the city, the Livingston Avenue Bridge, the river with less water, running at Thacher Park, Track season, wedding details, Peck's Arcade, an insiders dinner, customer threats, and a catabetic emergency.

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Chuck reflected on his son's gender transition: "My son Kris is taking new steps and new journeys, heading on a path that was not previously explored. And with that, as a father, the most I can do is offer support, consultation, a helping hand and a strong shoulder."

Amy on how she crosses -- or attempts to cross -- New Scotland Ave in the cross walk. (It involves waving.)

Silvia detailed her recent dealings with the city of Albany's bureaucracy.

Carl has been looking at how the construction of the Livingston Avenue Bridge changed things.

Jackie explored the upper Hudson River, now with less water.

Both Jen and Chris ran at the Thacher Park Running Festival.

Dominic had a bunch of thoughts related (and not) to Track season.

J+R shared a bunch of details from their recent wedding (including the food, of course).

Daniel deemed Peck's Arcade nice, good, and reasonable.

Zena attened a "super special wonderful insiders" dinner at MezzaNotte.

Steve posed a question about restaurants and how they should respond to threats from customers.

And how Rob responded to a catabetic emergency.


PSA: Do yourself a favor and read Chuck's blog mentioned above. It brought tears to my eyes.

As someone who crosses New Scotland four times a day or more (in a less trafficked section), I share Amy's frustration in trying to cross at the pedestrian crosswalks. Here's a difficulty at my closest crosswalk: it is also a designated CDTA bus stop. So in fairness to oncoming drivers, they may think I'm waiting for a bus. I have to use a lot of assertive body language (inc. holding up my hand like a crossing guard) to get the message across that I want to cross. I occasionally get some body language back ("the finger.") I think that pedestrians are invisible to drivers, literally invisible. I don't think the current cross walks and signage are well designed for their purported function. The combination of drivers' obliviousness and arrogance plus poor visual information that a pedestrian wants to cross results in a very unsafe system for pedestrian crossing.

I can totally relate to the crosswalk story, in many sections of the city. I have the same issue with crossing Hackett, except it's worse, because you need to go several city blocks (aka over a quarter mile) to even find a cross-walk or traffic light. Additionally, despite all the signage, this section is treated like a suburban highway, with cars whizzing by near or over 40mph.

Unless I'm willing to walk 10 minutes one way to cross at a traffic controlled intersection (hehe, ya, "controlled" is used loosely by our motorists friends), and 10 minutes back to where I wanted to be, any attempt to cross will be met with scorn during the commuting hours. And if I dare cross, fighting the system by j-walking, I typically get a scream "There's no crosswalk there asshole!" Well, maybe the city should do something about that problem. At least they promised me so last summer, given the high volume of students that pass through this way. Still no remediation.

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