7/19/11

Ride Home 7/19

For the second day in a row, I rode behind another bicyclist immediately from the driveway at school. Not a hipster, he was helmetless with Bono sunglasses, a purple shirt and cargo pants and rode some kind of proper road bike of the midrange aluminum variety. It was a nice trip downhill and he took pretty much the same line that I take, avoiding the bumps and the branches and I was overall fairly content in that it reinforced to me that I've been approaching the road in the correctish way. Per usual, he made it down the hill faster than I did and turned off at 42nd, heading somewhere into Glover Park much as the hipster did yesterday.
A CaBi makes a distinct noise and it's easy to hear the clitter clatter of the IGH as someone rides up behind you. This happened to me at Tunlaw and Calvert and I was all like "huh?" because I thought that I was making my way rather swiftly and had no clue from whereabout a CaBi might appear. I think the rider headed off towards George Mason Rec Center, but I don't know. A rare CaBi sighting and a welcome one. I feel like I've seen fewer of them lately on the commute, especially making the cross-river trip from Georgetown to Rosslyn and I wonder if the data backs that up. I sort of thought that the establishment of the Rosslyn beachhead would result in a much larger daily flow, but at least during my commute times, I'm not noticing it. Of course, I'm only an observer for a total of like 4 minutes a day, so I'm not really in any objective place to judge.
I rode behind a car who stopped at every stop sign, but not at the sign, instead stopping in the middle of the crosswalk past the stop sign. Does that count? It's sort of in the spirit of law-abiding, but not exactly pedestrian friendly.
It's disappointing when you go to stare at a driver who's allowed his car to drift well into the bike lane, but he's looking in the other direction. I've only got so many passive-aggressive moves and it'd be nice to get them acknowledged.
Think my tires might be flattish.
Bike chivalry isn't dead, but it's not exactly a real thing either. I rolled, with the walk sign, into a crosswalk and slowed so that a pedestrian would be shielded by me from an itching-to-turn car. This seems like a polite thing to do, though I suppose only advisable in situations in which you have good eye contact with the driver of the turning car. No use making yourself a speed bump.
The bus stop by Court House and Veitch could be better for bicyclists but I don't know how. Right now, the bike lane runs between the two travel lanes and the right turn lane, so whenever there's traffic, you have to pick yourself through the backed-up automobiles and buses and most of the time it's annoying at best and vaguely dangerous at worst.
If you make a driver slow down so that you can run a red light on your bike, you're doing it wrong. Saw some guy really screw this up. If you're going to run a red, do it better.
Sometimes pedestrians do this thing where instead of crossing at the crosswalk, where one might anticipate it, is walk another ten steps and then cross slightly further up the road. What's the deal with that? I mean, do what you want, but don't be surprised if I'm surprised.
Mumbling curses under your breath at joggers in the bike lane is a constitutional right. There's no more compelling argument for more sidewalk space than joggers running in the bike lane. Joggers! Write your congresspeople or local politicians or whoever.
Beat the rain, though I sort of wish I got rained on. It was hot enough to want respite, though really not as bad as I feared. Should get worse later in the week.

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