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The beauty of street paint is that it costs next to nothing and it can have a huge effect in a very short period of time. Anyone watching how New York City Department of Transportation Commissioner Janette Sadik-Khan transforms public streets into public spaces with paint, planters, seating, and signs knows how the installation of these materials overnight works like magic.
I live a ten-minute cab ride from the airport. I love it. Many a morning, I have stumbled down the porch steps in flip-flops and a business suit, carrying an overnight bag and high heels to make a flight in an hour’s time. Several weeks ago, I stepped into a cab and chirped my usual, “Good morning—National Airport, please!” and settled back into the seat, ready to finish applying eyeshadow.
“Do you know how to get there?,” the driver asked.
On the Sunday that the April Nor’easter dumped the second highest rainfall ever recorded in Central Park, I waded to the New York Auto Show at the Jacob Javits Center. I wasn’t there to see the mighty floor show of preening cars inside the convention center, I went to see the Taxi ’07 exhibition outside on the wind and rain swept lower roadway. For anyone who has tried to hail a taxi in a Manhattan rainstorm, visiting the exhibition on that Sunday raised a familiar feeling: nearly a dozen yellow taxis in sight, not one of which was going to pick me up and whisk me away to dry land.