Ride Home 5/23

It was a perfect DC spring afternoon, which is to say hot, pollenic, 100% humidity and looming thunderstorms that won't even break the heat or humidity, assuming they ever actually arrive. At least when you're biking, you get some wind in your face. I feel bad for the walkers.
Texting and driving don't mix even when you're a pretty girl driving a black BMW. I thought about saying something, but what's there even to say? It's illegal? You might hit something/someone? Have you considered an unlimited texting plan with a friends and family discount? It's always awkward to scold while biking, if not entirely self-defeating. I mean, if someone actually does something to endanger me, I'll say something, but I'm not going unprovokedly chide. I'll just passively-aggressively blog about it a few hours later.
If there's not room to pass a bicyclist, don't pass a bicyclist. Especially on a curve and uphill. For what it's worth, the driver also passed a car trying to parallel park, so it's not just anti-bike poor road behavior. Victory?
My goal was to get home before the rain. Every once in a while, I would look up at the clouds and try to guess if I could do it. This is a rather useless exercise. What do I know?
34th street was backed up til R. Like bumper to bumper. This creates the usual problems, which are only amplified by the post-storm detritus that litters the bike lane. I'd rather be going slowly, mindful of the various stick crap (official term) on the road then be stuck in a long row of cars. SMUGNESS ALERT (If you're averse to smugness, please skip to the next paragraph): One day when the traffic is moderately bad/bad, I'd like to get a comically large stopwatch and see how much time elapses between when I make it to Prospect and when a car I pass on 34th makes it to Prospect. And then I'd like to fashion a sign that has written on it something like "8 minutes 34 seconds wasted by not bicycling." And then I will swill a soy latte while reading GOOP on my iPhone. I threw in that last sentence for extra smugness and a self-parody.
Where to go after that? Well, I rode the Custis to Veitch. Lightly trafficked, by peds and bikes. I rode behind a guy in one of those reflective vests. I don't know how to feel about those vests. On one hand, they promote visibility, which is a good thing. On the other hand, they look ridiculous. But so do bike helmets and I favor those. So, I'm just going to settle on " reflective vests: they're something people wear because they want to and that's ok with me." I'm basically a libertarian.
Hyper-local issue of unnecessary specificity concerning 13th St N between Highland and Washington: I think that it's wide enough for a bike lane. In fact, there's a crack in the road right where a bike lane would be. Even though Key Boulevard is the marked bike route, I take 13th Street because Key gets hilly and because there's a dog park on 13th and I like looking at dogs playing. It's also lightly trafficked and has a better/more direct connection to Washington. My decision seems eminently reasonable, especially the dog park part, not that anyone was questioning it. Anyway, I ride where the bike lane should be and I've never had a problem with a passing motorist. At least add some sharrows.
I normally try to pass lines of cars stopped at a light on the right side rather than riding between two rows of stopped cars in the middle, but there's sometimes not enough room and today I rode between the cars. If there was something called bike confession, this would be one of the things a biker would say so as to not confess all of his more serious trespasses.
I was close to home and tried to hurry to make it  before the real rain and remain dry (except for the sweat that drenched me), but I made the pointless decision to take a sip of water, bobbled my water bottle and sprayed my face and somehow got my left ankle wet. Smooth move, Ferguson.

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