Raccoons. Maybe you've noticed? They're infesting Central Park.
It started when a friend plowed into one rambling through the park late-night on a bike. Then, a different friend on a bike collided with one on the same c.p. loop.
In a flash, it became routine. Talk about a ride through the park, talk about a raccoon on the road. I came to expect to see no fewer than three raccoons each ride. Last week, a friend saw two raccoons clawing at each other.
Raccoons as fat as cats, mind you. Puffed out, inflated, fat cats lurking about.
That was all fine. But when they invaded the reservoir? Then, yes then, when they interrupted my run, my patience wore thin. Running, running, halting to a stop? Two raccoons on my path. I veered off to the paved road, wondering if those things bite.
A colleague of mine suggested I call 3-1-1 to complain. So that's what I did. They took my call, they kindly took down my complaint to relay to the New York City Department of Parks & Recreation Center. (deal is, Parks & Rec doesn't take phone complaints).
The good news? I got a call 20 minutes later from Parks & Rec.
The bad news? They asked were they rabid? Threatening? Foaming at the mouth? If not, then there's nothing anyone can do. That's because raccoons are considered natural wildlife of the park.
Really? Well, I guess maybe that's the case. But, I admit, I am curious. What if 3-1-1 received a few more calls from the hood? It may also be a good idea to contact Manhattan Borough President, Scott Stringer, too. Met him at an UES public school auction I covered. Lovely man working hard for the boroughs.
Worth a try, no?
Seen one too many raccoons in the park? 3-1-1, Babies!
Or contact Mr. Stringer:
How's that for a UES call to action?
Down with those pesky raccoons!