19 July 2007

Where are the zeppoles?! This street fair sucks!

All the streets around here are closed to traffic; its very Vanilla Sky, except theres still tons of people walking around albeit through the middle of the street like a street fair. So where are the zeppoles and sausage and peppers stands? This street fair really sucks! I wanted to win my girl a Mets mirror or a miniature framed Scarface poster! Lamè!

OK, so as we've all heard by now an 83 year old steampipe wrapped in asbestos exploded yesterday afternoon around 6pm on 41st between Lex and 3rd - which is a few blocks from where I work on Lex. I was already back in Bay Ridge (HOLLA!) when I walked in on 1010 WINS breaking the news; I leave 1010 WINS on all day for my dog so she can stay informed in between naps (Naturally, Gothamist has a pretty serious round-up of the events with some eyewitness accounts)

I spoke to my friend late last night who works right on 41st and Lex and she was spooked. Apparently ish was pretty chaotic in that area; more chaotic than the local news is reporting. Naturally no one had any idea what the F was going on and in the never ending shadow of 9/11 everyone expects worse than the worst.

My girl said the rumbling in her building was so loud people thought the building was coming down; people were screaming and crying and kicking off their shoes to run faster down the stairs. My friend ran down 19 flights of a 50-story building; said handbags, eyeglasses and shoes were everywhere; people really thought this was "it"; that the building they were in was collapsing just like we've seen a million times from 9/11 footage; people running from smoke and falling buildings like a Godzilla movie come to life. F*cked. What a nightmare.

It's odd seeing some people walking around this morning with masks on. I saw 3 or 4 people with those 99¢ store white painters dust masks on. Sweetheart, that isn't going to help, but go for it.

Its an unwelcome and eerie quiet without cars and delivery trucks rumbling around. I guess this is like some environmentalists "green" wet dream; I bet they're watching the news and masturbating; they've got six flat screen set up all showing the empty streets; Lexington Avenue with no cars or trucks is like a Pamela Anderson centerfold to them. I am already so sick of this "green" term; it's so lame. Enough! Caring about the environment is SO 1997. Hahahahahaa! 2007 is all about assuming eternal supply, littering and burning styrofoam!Woooooooo!

I guess crosstown buses are still all f*cked up because people were getting on the $5 express to ride it for like 2 stops. Dude got on the bus with his tie draped around his neck and I really wanted to get into it with him but I held back. I figured we're all stressed out over yesterdays explosion and we need to ban together at a time like this; I gave him a pass.

OK, so lets talk about asbestos and when did it become so evil? Years ago the entire world was wrapped in asbestos; it was like duct tape or Chris Rock and Tussin. Pipe needs insulating? Cover it in asbestos; Car don't work? Fill it with asbestos; Johnny's got the flu? Feed him some asbestos. But now you say asbestos and ooooooh its a dirty, dirty word.

The name asbestos derived for its historical use in lamp wicks; the resistance of asbestos to fire has long been exploited for a variety of purposes. Asbestos was used in fabrics such as Egyptian burial cloths and Charlemagne's tablecloth (which according to legend, he threw in a fire to clean). Asbestos occurs naturally in many forms as it is mined from metamorphic rocks.

When asbestos is used for its resistance to fire or heat, the fibers are often mixed with cement or woven into fabric or mats. Asbestos is used in brake shoes and gaskets for its heat resistance, and in the past was used on electric oven and hotplate wiring for its electrical insulation at elevated temperature, and in buildings for its flame-retardant and insulating properties, flexibility, and resistance to chemicals.

Kent, the first filtered cigarette on the market, used asbestos in its "Micronite" filter from 1952 to 1956. Wow. Tobacco and asbestos all in one?! Sign me up!

Then in the 70's it all came crashing thanks to a dude named Irving Selikoff. Damnit, Irving!

Dr. Irving Selikoff, of Mt. Sinai School of Medicine, was the first to point out health concerns associated with asbestos. Irv found that some workers, occupationally exposed to certain types asbestos fibers, were at increased risk of lung disease.

While Dr. Selikoff's work played a key role in removing amphibole asbestos from industry, the resulting media-driven hysteria certainly helped it along.

It is estimated that about 10,000 people die each year in the U.S. of asbestos-related diseases, such as mesothelioma, asbestosis, lung cancer, and gastrointestinal cancer. Well, all right! [Asbestos on Wikipedia]

OK but I think we can relax in regard to yesterdays steampipe explosion as far as us all coming down with mesothelioma. I think we'll all be OK. Let's try and relax.

If you wanna read more (serious) ish about the explosion yesterday, here are two pertinent links:

Steam Pipe Explosion Updates [1010 WINS]

NYC Office of Emergency Management

"If AIDS don't get you then the warheads will" - Cro-Mags

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