Comment 81893

By WRCU2 (registered) - website | Posted October 18, 2012 at 08:45:50

Is Raise the Hammer's Policy to:

Fatigue the Community with Banalities?

I recently read at RTH the Ontario government has announced that starting December 1, it is exempting bicycles and bike helmets from the provincial sales tax. I wonder if HST is also exempted or are we right back where we were in November 2007 without such an incentive? I don't know and I don't care. I couldn't buy a new bike and helmet if my life depended on IT. I've been unemployed for 17 months so a tax-exempt purchase is moot at best.

But Raise the Hammer is not entirely banal, there are things to do in Hamilton when you're unemployed like walking around with a bike helmet on and no bicycle at your side:

Though only a block south of my position in front of the good Shepherd, the passers-by were of a completely different milieu, most of them downtown workers bustling hurriedly with vital purpose (perhaps my haste to get somewhere important, they tell themselves, is what places me on a tier above the people moving pointlessly hither and thither around the Good Shepherd)

I was still wearing my bicycle helmet (mostly to give myself some protection from the sun, having locked the bike at the library two hours earlier.) There is a widespread belief that no person is ever more than ten metres away from his or her vehicle, and a woman approached me, looked me in the eye and said "I think someone stole your bike."

I meet this person a lot. This is the Person Who Notices That Things About Me Are Wrong (in this case a bike helmet but no bike). The PWNTTAMAW speaks with the stark assertiveness of incontrovertible common sense, and always maintains full eye-contact while doing so.

The PWNTTAMAW is the person who tells me I have a shoelace untied. The PWNTTAMAW is the person who tells me that it is not raining when it was five minutes ago and I haven't gotten around to collapsing my umbrella. The PWNTTAMAW is the person who tells me the walk light is now on, when I'm a pedestrian at a controlled intersection and am looking up at the roof of a building to decide if it's worth taking the photo of an approaching bird who might cast its shadow on the wall.

I know I am always supposed to acknowledge my transgression and thank the PWNTTAMAW for talking some sense into me, and I never do. On this occasion I nodded at the PWNTTAMAW and said that it was OK because I had lots more bicycles at home and the person who took it probably really needed a bike. I would have referenced Vittorio De Sica's Neorealist masterpiece Ladri di Biciclette, as an empathetic examination of bicycle theft in times of economic crisis, but PWNTTAMAW was already gone.

Alas, the long moments between an inspiring read are often fatiguing and banal indeed.

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