7/7/11

Ride In 7/7

I had my yearly work performance review at 9 (my yearly blog performance review is, let's say, next January), so I sort of rushed in. I wanted to be at my desk at 8:45 and I left the house at 8, so I really didn't have much time to dawdle. So dawdle I didn't.
I've gotten used to traveling at a certain speed (slowish to moderate), so I'm not accustomed to really pushing myself during the morning commute. I didn't like it. It's not that I was reckless- it just wasn't fun to race against the clock. It sucks to rush while driving and it just as much sucks to rush while biking. Aside from the luxury of breaking traffic laws and running down helpless old ladies with impunity, one of the best parts of bike commuting is feeling like you're separate from manic frustrations that come from driving- like fighting your way through stop-and-go congestion or trying to beat a changing stop light. Imposing a superstructure (in this case, a time limit) onto your commute that echoes (if not duplicates) the anxieties of driving doesn't make for a leisurely morning.
Rushing also makes it hard to observe the craziness of the world around you, which is normally the bread and butter of this blog. I think I remember seeing some lady wearing purple shorts, which isn't especially remarkable, and then there was a guy with a ponytail that, um, was weird or something...? I don't know- I was in a hurry.
I'd really like it if Georgetown (the neighborhood) adopted as a pilot program the idea of removing all stop signs at intersections and replacing them with 'slow down, yield to pedestrians and take turns if there's another car there' signs. No one stops anyway- especially now that it's just one big construction zone on 35th and N and O. Of course, there's the difficulty of putting all that information on a sign, but Gary Lauder's sign works well enough for me. Lawyers: do we have some sort of liability problem with implementing this? Engineers: Can our roadways be designed or rejiggered to handle this? Lion tamers: why are you reading this blog when there are lions to be tamed?
Got a long look from a guy in a black convertible as we both rolled through a stop sign in opposite directions. I don't know if it was a death stare or if he was just checking out my bike, as I am wont to do any time I pass a bicyclist while driving. If the former: screw you. If the latter: it's a great bike and I like it very much.

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