I'm in New York this week meeting the who's who of the city's Livable Streets movement and learning about a lovable, purple, near-extinct creature that is apparently making a comeback. I'll let Clarence Eckerson explain:
As New York history buffs can tell you, until the early part of the 20th century, the city was prime habitat for Zozos -- large, furry, innocentpurple creatures that freely roamed the streets, mingling with people and enjoying the public realm.But after the advent of the automobile their numbers slowly dwindled. By the 1930s, sightings became rare and they were thought to have goneextinct.
I haven't seen a Zozo or any related species in San Francisco but you might want to keep your eyes peeled after the bicycle injunction is lifted and the city begins trial street closures. Even then, I'm not sure how habitable our environment will be for Zozos, but we can hope. Zozos despise cars, and in San Francisco, despite our Transit First policy, the automobile still rules. The film is awesome, though. As my Streetsblog LA colleague Damien Newton notes:
It's fun and lighthearted and features the facesto go with some of the names you've probably gotten familiar with ifyou read this blog regularly. Make some time this weekend to sit downand watch it. If you have kids, they'll probably enjoy it more thanyou.
Bryan Goebel is a reporter at KQED Public Radio in San Francisco. A veteran journalist and writer, he helped launch Streetsblog SF in 2009 and served as editor for three years. He lives car-free in the Castro District.