Southern Brooklyn

Cat-Concerned Vigilante Vandalizes Emmons Avenue Asphalt



Are you freakin’ kidding me?

Look, I care a lot about animals. I grew up in the kind of home where, well, we had a rescue pigeon. That’s right. We rescued an injured pigeon. And kept it in our home. Its name was Franklin.

So I think I’ve got some bonafides in saying whoever did this is nuts. And an asshole.

I’m not saying I want to see cats get hit by cars – I don’t – but you don’t get to vandalize public space because you’re a crazy cat person. Sorry, but there are better ways to handle this.

That is all.

Photo by Robert Fernandez.

Comment policy


  1. Clearly these cats are slow, and a notice is absolutely necessary. If DOT won’t take action, then these are the heroes our city deserves and the ones it needs right now.

  2. let me spray the word “Crazy” before “Cats” and “Lady” after “Cats”

  3. You can’t see it in the picture, as someone covered it up or tried to remove it – but it also said “MEOW”

  4. Honestly – I agree here with whomever sprayed this. First off – you shouldn’t really be flying down Emmons avenue anyway. The roads are atrocious and frankly if you can’t stop fast enough to avoid hitting an animal crossing the road – you’ll end up hitting an adult or worse a child – especially considering the fact that cats have significantly quicker reflexes than we do.

    Honestly I don’t see how this is any different than the signs that tell you to slow down and watch for children; or slow down for the elderly; or quiet simply the speed bumps placed on streets in every Jewish neighborhood.

    You mention “vandalize public space” – what are they exactly ruining? Nobody painted a huge penis in the middle of the road. It doesn’t say anything vulgar nor anything demeaning. It says “hey, stop speeding – there’s animals here”. What’s so wrong with that?

    Whoever painted this is merely trying to get everyone else to realize that we share this world with more than simply other humans.

    I have rescued a plethora of cats, dogs, possums, raccoons and birds. Not so much by choice – but they all tend to arrive on my front steps. I guess my house is listed as Dr. Doolittle’s in the animal kingdoms version of Yelp. To be honest if I repeatedly saw animals getting hit by cars in my neighborhood – I would probably have done the same thing.

    But hey, it’s easy to point the finger and call someone crazy until it’s your own pet.

  5. Funny – they are concerned about cats safety… what about putting signs that indicate emmons is only 1 lane from Sheepshead Bay Road to 2 blocks before Knapp Street… that would save a lot of driver road rage… also – how about a cop to monitor the yellow school bus every morning on Emmons that 1) keeps the “stop” sign out even though no kids are boarding and 2) to keep impatient drivers in check when they are trying to pass the bus when the stop sign is out and kids are boarding the bus.

  6. “You mention ‘vandalize public space’ – what are they exactly ruining?”

    Agreed. It’s not as if the pavement had been a thing of beauty and a joy forever before this was painted on it.

  7. Exactly. I understand if it was an up-kept cobblestone street – but this is a piece of pavement that rarely gets repaired, fixed, attended to, or cared about.

  8. You don’t tell people in Brooklyn what to do. There WILL be douches who pour on an extra 10-15 miles per hour just to piss the vandal off.

  9. Like I said, there are other ways to do this. I have no problem with the sentiment, but you don’t go around spray painting the roadway. Petition to get signs, like those who get the speed bumps, or, hey, better yet, get the cat problem taken care of once and for all through a trap, neuter, foster program and public education against feeding strays.

    Imagine if instead of going through the proper routes, those who wanted speed bumps just went out and poured their own concrete on top of the asphalt. Even from your own example – this person was concerned about cats; so, what, now since you’re concerned about children, you’re going to go 30 feet up and spray paint “slow children ahead”? And then a block down, by the senior home, the management will write “slow seniors ahead”? It’d be chaos, not to mention ridiculously ugly and ultimately have no effect on safety (except maybe to make it worse).

  10. At least the penmanship is neat and there are no misspellings like DOT once did SCOOHL XING. The intent was good at least.

  11. Every street is dangerous for cats. Unfortunately cats don’t always exercise the best judgement when crossing streets and they run so fast that they are not easily seen because of their size. And the numbers of cats on the streets keep growing, so more cats get hit. Crossing cat zones don’t begin to address the problem.

  12. Exactly. We need a strong initiative to teach these cats to “cross on green, not in between” to prevent more senseless deaths. #visionzero

  13. Where is the money for educating cats? They are a large constituency here, and they had better get some consideration or they will start voting insensitive legislators out of office.

  14. So you know for sure that this individual isn’t involved in a trap, neuter, release program? Or does it fit your dialogue better to implicate that they aren’t?

    Speaking of your dialogue, you “paint” this person with some very colorful language. The use of the term “Crazy Cat Lady” is sexist and more impotantly unsubstantiated. Calling someone an “asshole” to hammer home your dislike is somewhat distasteful.

    You live in the Sheepshead Bay neighborhood but you do not live on every street, your condemnation is short sighted and your choice of words fairly irresponsible.

    Emmons Ave. is the Wild, Wild, West of local streets, it is left unmonitored and without proper signage. Any given day, at any given time it is a danger.

    The amount of drinking and driving that occurs on Emmons when the party boats are in full swing and the clubs are pumping doesn’t get this much attention. Here are your “assholes,”, please feel free to start a trap and neuter program for these individuals.

    You speak of petitioning to get signs? For whatever reason the politicians and police don’t seem to chomping at the bit to make it safer for humans, so do you think they would be so concerned about cats?

    So someone wanted to attempt to save the lives of some cats? Do you think we find them and skin them alive? Oh the horror!!!

    Obviously the “vigilante” lives in the neighborhood, could it be that the Charles Bronson of Cats is taking some power into their own hands to protect a little piece of what is a part of the neighborhood?

    Well, enough time spent here. I am off to start my own blog where I can call my neighbors “assholes” without impunity.

  15. Amazing how many people think it’s okay to write on a city street. Guess that gives me the right to write on their house door if I see something I don’t like.

  16. And crossing guards for cats. They need to hire a cat herder to cross them at the green not in between! Or a cat whisperer to tell them when it’s safe to go. lol

  17. The reason he did this is out of frustration, his cats have been run over by speeding cars on Emmons Avenue. I have seen, personally, the “assholes” mentioned by the person who wrote this story, a cat crossing and they speed up their car aiming for the animal. I live on Emmons and walk my dog on it every day and the speed these vehicles come down this avenue on a daily basis is incredible. My own car, which was parked, was hit by one of these “assholes” and then they left the scene. Emmons becomes the service road for the Belt Parkway when it jams up and these “assholes” think they can maintain the 50+ mph speed limit on a city street, and they do. So if they slow down to read it while they’re driving and may have given a cat an extra 2 seconds to get across, or an elderly person, or a woman with a baby, what’s the harm? If it said “slow down old people and children” would that make you feel better? Who cares? If you ever lost a pet it’s not a happy occasion but to lose multiple ones from being run over by cars it must be gut-wrenching. Cut the person a little slack, I thought it made a point in a funny way. Lighten up people, you’re twisted a little too tight. BTW it’s usually the “assholes” in Infinitis.

  18. Wow, we must be related! Love a good pro animal anti jerk rant! I was always very timid when it came to someone belittling me for my empathy, insinuating that I was nuts, stupid for caring, but the more I volunteered and met like minded people the more I realized I could be braver than I thought. I tip my hat to you and to the spray painter. And a raspberry to Ned !

  19. I love cats and this notice is very necessary. Also a traffic safety education initiative should be put in place for the training of cats in all public schools,

  20. So am I free to paint whatever message I want to communicate on the street in front of your house? Perhaps some vandalism advocating the widespread culling of street animals to protect public health?

    Maybe we should just not vandalize public property and leave the advocacy to appropriate media channels.

  21. What needs to be installed are two speed bumps, one in front of 3030 Emmons and one at the property end of Sheepshead Bay Yacht Club. The reason I say speed bumps and not a light is you want traffic to move and not stop. You don’t want to impeed the flow of traffic, just slow it down. Just a note, writing on the street is public property, owned by noone belonging to everyone as opposed to a door on a house which is private (which it really isn’t, everything belongs to the State but that’s a talk for another time). Again, wound too tight, cut the person some slack

  22. So we should gather statistical data on where cats are being hit and paint signs all over the neighborhood. Because cats get hit by cars wherever there are colonies of feral cats. And there are a lot of colonies in our community.

  23. So you edited out “lady,”, but you don’t have a problem with the word “asshole?”.

    I think your choice of words is beneath the person I thought you were.


  24. They would probably have better success training cats in schools than they do with kids. Much better use of public space. And they will simply refuse to take the hundred tests. They will glance at a test and then lick their crotch a very good form of cat protest.

  25. I think speed bumps are great, it’s the fastest cars that look to avoid them most but the DOT hardly ever uses them, I really don’t understand why. So many corners that scream out for Stop signs that DOT ignores requests for also.


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