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Department of Sanitation

Friday’s Headlines: Ed Grayson, We Hardly Knew Ye Edition

Driving off into the sunset: Sanitation Commissioner Ed Grayson hung it up after 23 years. Photo: Gersh Kuntzman

The best thing about riding your bike around town? You never know what you're going to encounter.

That happened yesterday for our old man editor. He rolled off the Brooklyn Bridge only to run headlong into two long lines of green-clad Department of Sanitation workers flanking Worth Street as they waited for Commissioner Ed Grayson — 23 years strong in the department — to walk out for the last time (thanks to Mayor Adams inexplicably sending him into retirement).

It was a great event: Bagpipes, flowers, plaques, a short-but-heartfelt speech, hugs (we swear, Grayson grabbed our editor, not the other way around!). No one had a bad thing to say about Grayson, who is every inch a Sanitation life, having followed his father and mother into the department, starting in 1999 at the bottom before working his way to the top job.

He shook a few hundred hands and then jumped into his city car for his last official ride home (the car stays with the city, of course). Oh, and we'd be remiss if we didn't point out that Grayson's driver got a speeding ticket on the Highlander SUV on Jan. 24 in Prospect Heights (no idea if Grayson was in the car, but just sayin').

In any event, we always found Grayson a straight shooter and accessible. Plus, he got us narrow snow plows for bike lanes. If that doesn't cement a legacy, what will?

Here's a slideshow so you can say you were there:

In other news:

    • Here's the most horrific road rage incident you're likely to see. On the plus side, the driver was charged with attempted murder. (NY Post)
    • Council Speaker Adrienne Adams pushed back on Mayor Adams's attempt to link the Black Lives Matter movement to increased crime. (NY Post)
    • Speaking of a frustrated Council leader, Adams and her colleagues are frustrated that the MTA has not provided information about malfunctioning subway cameras (NY Post). The agency's explanation — faulty internet — isn't very convincing (NY Post).
    • Community Board 7 Transportation Committee Co-Chairman Howard Yaruss is so angry that the DOT is ignoring the board's request for a real parking study of the Upper West Side that a DOT representative stormed out of a meeting. But Yaruss is right; the agency is stalling. (West Side Rag)
    • The car-loving Juniper Valley Civic Association is pushing a different Citi Bike dock plan to "save" about 45 "parking" spaces — because as climate change continues, we would never want the bike share system to actually discourage or replace any driving, right? (QNS)
    • Meanwhile, the rival Queens Chronicle celebrated cycling and highlighted the borough's bike boom. As Mark Knopfler once said, "Two men say they're Jesus — one of them must be wrong."
    • Cause, meet effect: Allow the real estate industry to elect a mayor and you'll get higher rents. (NY Post)
    • Members of the Sunrise Movement will rally in Battery Park on Saturday before departing on a six-day bike ride to Albany to demand that legislative officials take climate change seriously. (Climate Can't Wait)
    • Hockey and biking bad boy Sean Avery is defending himself in his cycling misdemeanor case. And you know what they say about a person who defends himself — he has a fool for a client! The Times's story is a must read.
    • Finally, our friends at the New York Cycle Club are giving away $500 grants to "local organizations whose principal mission is cycling-related, or whose activities directly benefit cycling, or has a cycling-related project." Apply here. Deadline is May 15.

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