This video contains raw footage shot for "Five Day Bicycle Race," a project comprised of live in-studio commentary and taped edited coverage of the 1976 Democratic National Convention in New York City. Produced by independent videomakers calling themselves The Image Union (including many members of TVTV and Videofreex), it aired on Manhattan Cable for three hours per night for five days during the convention. In this video, videomaker Bart Friedman visits a police tow truck lot to speak with a few individuals about their towing plight. We also see footage from a large rally being held over higher wages and contracts for hospital workers.
00:00Copy video clip URL This tape begins with a blue screen.
00:12Copy video clip URL Cut to a shot of person watching television. The videomakers test out the equipment.
00:29Copy video clip URL Cut to a shot of a police tow truck bringing a car into an impound lot. As the truck passes by, the camera pans to a shot of videomaker Bart Friedman, who comments on the frustration and turmoil that comes along with getting one’s car towed. “This is what could happen to you if you’re not careful. This is probably the most painful experience you can have in New York City if you have an automobile. Might be worse than having your room robbed, might be worse than having someone smoke in the same elevator with you, worse than having your pocket picked. You get your car stolen and ransomed by the friendly people who are the officials in this beautiful city.” Friedman then interviews a Russian man about his car being towed. The man is in a surprisingly good mood. Friedman then moves on to speak with someone else. The sound level decreases severely towards the end of this part of the tape.
02:44Copy video clip URL As the sound levels return, Friedman speaks with a man whose car had been towed nearly a week ago. The man states that he had to pay an entire week’s salary to retrieve his car.
03:50Copy video clip URL Friedman speaks with a woman about her car being towed on her birthday. Friedman asks the woman about her thoughts on the DNC. She goes on to talk about some of the parking fines she received.
04:58Copy video clip URL Friedman interviews a tow truck driver about his work. Friedman shares his negative feelings over the few times he’s had his car towed. The tow truck driver smiles and responds but does not commiserate with Friedman. The driver emphasizes the need for people to be aware of the traffic and parking signs around them. Friedman goes on to say that the job must be hard. However, before the driver can answer, a police officer approaches Friedman and knocks the microphone out of his hand. Friedman ultimately has to end the interview.
07:03Copy video clip URL Cut to a shot of a man adorned in a Gerald Ford costume giving out pardons for one dollar a piece. We also see footage of a man with angel wings and a harpsichord. This lasts for a few minutes.
10:03Copy video clip URL Cut to a a group of hospital workers protesting for higher wages and contracts. We also see footage of a person protesting nuclear power. Friedman asks the woman about her reasons for protesting nuclear power. “Basically we have to worry about the waste and we don’t trust man. I’m old enough to know that.”
12:48Copy video clip URL Cut to more footage of hospital workers protesting. We watch as hundreds of people gather in hopes of making a statement and getting their way. Friedman briefly speaks with a radio reporter about the rally.
14:18Copy video clip URL Friedman speaks with a hospital worker about the protest. When asked who’s supporting the group, the man responds, “Who’s supporting me? Almost everybody else that’s got a conscience will support. If you don’t have a conscience, you’ll never support a worker. If they could understand what the issues are and stop reading the papers and following the politicians, they’ll know what it is. You can’t pay your rent on promises.” The man goes on to say that he just wants to make a decent salary that he can support his family with. The camera operator then continues to gather footage from around the area.
15:48Copy video clip URL Friedman tries to speak with other hospital workers about their cause. He finally speaks with man about the causes he and his fellow workers are fighting for. Another man also comments on the group of hospital workers and advocates their fighting for higher wages and contracts.
17:43Copy video clip URL Cut to more footage from the hospital workers strike. Friedman briefly interviews a few more hospital workers. One woman talks about their purpose. She emphasizes the need for decent wages among all hospital workers. Friedman and the camera operator once again speak with the woman protesting nuclear power. She talks about some of the struggles she has gone through because of her anti-nuclear power stance.
22:55Copy video clip URL Nancy Cain tries to interview a number of people protesting nuclear power. One woman states, “I think it’s a very important issue because nuclear power–it doesn’t just leave you when it starts. Once the radioactive waves escape, they last for millions of years.”
24:21Copy video clip URL A nuclear power protester comments on how his group has been treated by police officials at the protest. He states that the officials have been very brusque with the group. They had been moved from their designated area numerous times throughout the day. The videomakers then continue to gather footage from around the area.
26:20Copy video clip URL Nancy Cain comments on the lack of answers they’ve gotten from those involved with the protest. Cain speaks with fellow videomaker Eddie Becker about the lack of questions answered.
27:23Copy video clip URL Cut to footage of a group of marijuana advocates marching and chanting down the street. Friedman and Cain then speak with man who received a statement from the Puerto Rican Socialist Party about the bombings that had occurred in New York City earlier in the day. The man talks about the PRSP and their relations with the U.S. The man then gives a quick summary of the news on the bombings. Apparently, a number of bombs went off near the Herald Square area. The man talks about the FALN, the group supposedly behind the bombing. This lasts for several minutes.
32:20Copy video clip URL Tape ends.