“Unprecedented! The cops obey the clowns!”

NYC is possibly the loudest, most chaotic, most in-your-face city I have visited.  I live in London, for crying out loud, but traffic here pales in comparison to congestion in NYC.  Despite enjoying my stay, I remember leaving NYC thinking that drivers use their horns more than they use their steering wheels.

I visited the Museum of the City of New York (website) on 5th Avenue and was delighted to find an exhibition about activism.  One of the exhibits was about the Bike Clown Brigade.


The Bike Clown Brigade are very cross clowns.  NYC drivers not only use their horns more than their steering wheels – they also use the bike lanes to park their cars, in total disregard of cyclists for who those bike lanes were designed.

Enter the Bike Clown Brigade.

Donning typical clown attire, these brave people ride their bikes around the streets in NYC creating a scene.

Using brilliant guerrilla marketing tactics, the clowns ask drivers to park elsewhere, and do so in a humorous, non-confrontational manner.  They even hug taxi drivers.

This is the video shown at the exhibiton:

Their antics are noticed by the NYPD, and officers come along and move drivers away from bike lanes.

Do not miss the scene at 4:10″ with a clown hollering into a traffic cone.

One can hardly feel intimidated by a bunch of clowns prancing around the city wearing red noses, green hair, pink polka-dotted frocks and conical hats.  They put their point across brilliantly, attract media attention and the curiosity of passers-by.

They even finish off their day with a pie fight.  What a great day for everyone.


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