Thursday’s Headlines: We All Scream For (Or in This Case, At!) Ice Cream Edition

By the way, Mister Softee had nothing to do with Operation Meltdown. This is just a photo of an ice cream truck. Photo: Ezra Wolfe
By the way, Mister Softee had nothing to do with Operation Meltdown. This is just a photo of an ice cream truck. Photo: Ezra Wolfe

Just in time for summer, it’s “Operation Meltdown”! Yes, virtually every media outlet covered the city’s announcement that it has seized 34 (NY Times) or 46 (ABC News) ice cream trucks for non-payment of all the tickets they receive when they’re blocking the curb to hawk soft-serve. This being almost-summer — and the topic being ice cream — the local papers outdid themselves (you might say their coverage came with sprinkles and a cherry on top):

The Daily News led with a “rocky road” pun. The Post led with “Freeze!” (though usual tabloid Tennyson Max Jaeger later added a reference to “dough,” which isn’t really an ice cream pun). Katie Honan in the Wall Street Journal was the best in breaking down how the scam worked (though, sadly, no puns). Oddly, amNY went with a vehicular pun. And Gothamist, of all outlets, excoriated all the others for using puns at all.

NBC4 didn’t go for the linguistic swirl, but pointed out that the violations go back to 2009, which makes us wonder whether CBS2 had consumed that soon-to-be-legal pot ice cream when the channel reported, “Ice cream trucks are typically enjoyed for their sweet treats and the smiles that follow, not for running red lights, parking at fire hydrants and blocking crosswalks.” (What world does CBS2 live in?)

It all reminded our editor of the time when he was working for the NY Post when he broke the biggest story of his career: That the Mister Softee jingle actually has lyrics (the story is so old that it’s not online, but the Times’s 2000 version of it is!)

Enough time on Memory Ln. It’s time for the news:

  • An accessibility lawsuit against the MTA is going to trial as a judge rejected the latest efforts by the transit agency to quash it. (NYDN, amNY)
  • Politico’s Dana Rubinstein broke the news that DOT Commissioner Polly Trottenberg had resigned … from the MTA board, prompting sadness across the web.

  • The Post took a page from @placardabuse and staked out a cop who illegally parked his Maserati (make that his Maseratis!) with a department-issued placard. The cop accused the paper’s reporters of being racists and anti-Semites. What a world!
  • Well, as long as they don’t park their helicopters in the bike lane. (NY Times)
  • Friend of Streetsblog John Massengale published an op-ed in City Limits about how congestion pricing is just the start of the campaign to reclaim our streets.
  • Gothamist takes us back to the days when the High Line was terrible … and great!
  • News12 covered the “dialogue” ride set up by the TLC to allow cabbies to see what cyclists go through on the mean streets. But the coverage erred by suggesting there’s some kind of equivalence between riders of 50-pound bikes going 10 miles per hour and drivers of 3,000-pound steel cages going 35. The whole thing makes you wish Sinead O’Connor was still around to rip up a photo of “the real enemy” (that’s a 1992 reference, kids).
  • Another Friend of Streetsblog, Joel Epstein, has set up a petition demanding that Mayor de Blasio resign so that New York City could have what it needs: a full-time mayor. The petition follows a rare Streetsblog editorial calling for the very same thing.