10/11/11

Ride Home 10/11

Ok, let's do this thing.
Here's what greeted me at the bicycle rack. Vespas! A murder of vespas!
4 scooters and one e-bike
Still ample bike parking, so it's not like anyone was actually denied a space, but it still doesn't seem totally kosher.
Massachusetts was fine until my bag unclipped, clanged loudly against my rear spokes, causing a minor freakout, that leading me to slowing myself from around 30 miles per hour to stopping in the middle of the right travel lane, to hoisting my bike out of the travel lane onto the sidewalk in order to get the hell out of the way on oncoming cars. Turned out I didn't put the "clippy things" (technical term) into the bag correctly when I installed the trunk bag holder and they came undone after some bump along my descent. Not cool and not expected. I don't know how I failed to install correctly the appropriate "clippy things," though I suppose my referring to them that way might bely my lack of technical and mechanical aptitude.
Crisis (?) averted and I rode along down Mass behind some old dude on an even older English three speed (with some kind of Arlington bike license plate?) and I was happy for it. Until Q, it was a bit of a tussle with drivers not ceding the appropriate amount of space, but such is life. On Q, it was a back and forth with some guy riding a Salsa and talking on a cell phone. First, it's not cool to ride your bike and talk on a cell phone. It's kind of dangerous even, but far be it from me to cast judgment. Secondly, if you're just gonna amble on your bike and take your time because you're on a very leisurely phone call, DON'T SHOAL ME AT A GODDAMN STOP LIGHT and cause me to pass you two seconds after the light turns green. Some day I'm going to snap and follow someone home, ringing my bell over and over and over and over just so you know that someone is right behind you, even though they (I?) would have been perfectly content remaining in front of you had you not mad the terrible, regrettable decision to ride in front of me while I patiently waited for the red light to change. If you hear repeated ringing, somewhere off in the distance, know that that day has come and I've gone completely off my rocker. More so than now, even.
And phone guy wasn't the only one. There was a Panasonic fixie guy too.
Rhode Island and 11th and Q is never good to me and I ended up getting stuck behind a van, while other, more nimble cyclists, skirted around me, and the van, as I waited behind traffic (patiently?) and then at stop lights (patiently?) and then it was down 7th and then on M to 4th, where M stopped (because M is evil?)
4th was miserable. Sorry, NoMa. Just stuck with cars trying to get on the highway by Mass and K. There's also no bike lane. I'm beginning to think that the primary virtue of bike lanes is their ability to prevent bicyclists from getting stuck when cars are stopped rather than keeping them "safe" when cars are moving. Of course, that's only so true as drivers aren't turning right, which is only at the corner of every or every other block. But it's better than nothing.
[Fourth wall alert: 2 Broke Girls isn't funny. Also, CBS is the home of weirdly anachronistic misogynist and ethnic humor. What's the deal with that? To cater to olds?]
4th to F to 3rd to E to over by Union Station. The whole way was wonky. Along E, a guy in a black Saab jumped the red, using the advanced pedestrian walk as his green light. Guess he was in a hurry.
Again on Massachusetts to Stanton to more Massachusetts. By this point, the ride just wasn't fun anymore. I couldn't get in the correct lane, there was just too much traffic and most everyone else on the road seemed vaguely pissed and ready to be home. Some days are just like that.

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