Today a friend and I biked from the zoo down along Rock Creek to Georgetown. We each had a daughter behind us in matching plastic transport seats clipped on the back of the bicycles. It was beautiful weather and quite a pleasant way to spend a morning. We stopped at the waterfront in Georgetown, walked into a plaza area, and leaned our bikes against a wall. We took the girls, aged two and three, to an Edy’s ice cream store. My daughter went for a small cup of mint chocolate chip, with sprinkles. The kids were quite happy eating their ice cream.
After a bit a male security person probably in his late twenties came into the store. He asked me if the bicycles outside were ours, and indicated that they were not allowed in the plaza area. I asked if it would be ok to leave them for five more minutes while we finished up. He went outside. I could see him continuing to look at the bikes so I went out to talk to him. I was friendly and asked about the reasoning behind the bike prohibition, and he said that management did not want any accidents or whatever. He asked if he could place a paper notice on each bicycle so his bosses would know he was doing his job. I said sure and he put a one page notice on both bikes. They read:
This Vehicle is Parked
And is HERBY subject
To TOWING and
By order of the management
I am easily amused, particularly by things like the misspelling of hereby as herby, so I brought it inside to show my friend. Who is this Herby fellow? I asked.
The kids were taking a long time with the ice cream, so I ambled outside again and walked up the the security guard fellow. I showed him the piece of paper, pointed to the word in question and asked him very seriously “Who is this Herby fellow?”
The guy looked at the paper for a while, and then considered it for a moment or two. Then he said, “I guess it is the fellow who does the towing.”
That made my day.
I went back inside to recount the answer to my friend and we enjoyed it together. Then we watched the girls play for a while and biked back.
I kept the notice of violation as a souvenir.