Wednesday, June 09, 2004

Mister Flaccid

Okay, so NYC's Mayor Bloomberg is trying to update the city's "noise code," which apparently hasn't been done in a very long time. I support this in theory, but some of his ideas seem awfully impractical. I mean, construction equipment, for instance, is going to make noise, and there doesn't seem to be much you can do about it except limit the hours during which it can be used. Even more ludicrous is his plan for dogs: According to the (ever so reliable) Post, dogs may "yelp only for five minutes during the day and 10 minutes at night." While that sounds lovely in theory, how can anyone be expected to enforce it?

But that's not what people are up in arms about. No, all the press is going to Mister Softee, the ubiquitous ice cream trucks that play what has to be the most annoying and the loudest jingle ever. Anti-Bloomberg folks are using this to paint the mayor as an ice-cream-hating Grinch, while the Mister Softee higher-ups claim that any limitations on their music will hurt their business. Really? 'Cause last time I checked I wasn't living in the suburbs in the 1950s, where all the neighborhood children come running when the Good Humor truck comes down the street. People walk here. Right up to the truck that we can plainly see if we want some yummy soft serve. The Mister Softee guy in my neighborhood (or guys, as there are often two or three within a couple of blocks) never seems to be hurting for walk-up business. He also often plays his jingle so loudly that I can hear it from my apartment. Three blocks away. At 11 o'clock at night. On a Monday.

Maybe we can sic the barking dogs on them and kill two birds with one stone.

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