Raphael, Bay Ridge

“When I first came out of the service, I lived in Bushwick, off Flushing Ave, and that was a tough neighborhood, you’d duck every time you heard a car backfire. I was working for an antique store back then, and the owner lived around here, and said I should check it out, and I’ve been here ever since, around thirteen years.”
(Various people come by while we’re talking and Raphael has a high five or a few words for all of them) “You seem to know everyone.”
“Yeah, I’m always around this neighborhood, I work part-time at the liquor store, and deliver stuff for other stores in the area. And people see me with my bandana, they say, ‘Hey there’s Raphael!’ It’s like my trademark.”
“How’d the bandana get to be your trademark?”
“It’s kind of a biker thing.”
“Oh yeah? What kind of bike do you ride?”
“I don’t ride anymore - I got into a bad accident, and that was it for riding bikes. But I’m still a biker at heart - a lot of my friends are bikers. I still love bikes.”