Two weeks ago, as I was coming down one of the three staircases--oh yes, this is going to be one of those posts--at 82nd St.-Jackson Heights, I noticed something sticking out into my path. It was the loop of a cable-style bicycle lock. The bike was gone but the lock was still there. I pushed it so the loop was on the outside of the stairway and went home. The next morning, it was still there so I called 311.
I described how someone could easily catch their foot or a cane in the loop and take a nasty spill.... The operator interrupted me to confirm that the lock was attached to a subway stairway. "Yes, on the northeast corner of 82 and Roosevelt Avenue." "That's the MTA," he said. "I can transfer you or you can call 511." He transferred my call but I must have hit the wrong button (I was on the subway) and couldn't get to an operator. I called back later, got an operator (not that easy to do), and gave my report. "We'll take care of it."
Loop de loop
Two weeks later, the lock is still there. I keep an eye on it, make sure it hasn't been knocked back into the pathway, tidy it up a bit. I suppose I could go to a hardware store and buy some kind of bolt cutters, but it's become for me a kind of mascot of life at 82nd St.