By Carla Zanoni
WASHINGTON HEIGHTS — Forget Emily Post — Manhattan can now look to Mister Manners for guidance on how to live in polite society.
Artist and graphic designer Jay Shelowitz, a.k.a. Jay Shells, best known for his “subway etiquette” posters that tackled rude behavior down under, moved aboveground and uptown this week by pasting 7-by-4-foot posters reminding dog owners to clean up their furry friends.
The hand-painted and stenciled sign at the corner of West 173rd Street and Fort Washington Avenue shows a dog relieving itself next to the words, “Clean up after your dog! Use these,” with an arrow below pointing to a roll of biodegradable doggie bags.
NYC the Blog accompanied the artist Wednesday night, documenting Shelowitz as he put the poster up.
The uptown mural is the third in a series by Shelowitz, 30, a dog owner himself, who pasted similar posters on 14th Street and on First Avenue.
Carolina Ocejo, 50, walked her shihtzu and cocker spaniel, Andy and Vodka, near the poster Thursday night and laughed at the image of the dog hunching down next to a pile.
“This is good for me and the neighborhood,” she said in Spanish. “I’m always walking the dogs here; anything they can do to remind people to clean up is a good thing.”
Shelowitz said he chose to trek up to Washington Heights from his home near 14th Street after numerous commenters suggested the location on Gothamist, one of which read, “Washington Heights = poo minefield.”
But once uptown, he said the situation did not appear any worse than other neighborhoods he’s visited.
“It’s every income-level neighborhood, every demographic,” the artist said. “Many people are irresponsible and just think that when it rains it’ll go in the sewer or someplace else. We’re not in the woods, this a city.”
He added later, “Millions of people live here and walk all the time. If you aren’t paying attention, you are going to step in it.”