10/10/11

Ride In 10/10

Let's say, unlike me, you're chilling at home, eating some strada and watching a True Blood marathon. You're probably thinking to yourself, "gosh, I sure wish that I knew what riding to work was like today" between chomps (both your own of the delicious egg dish and those of sexy vampires). Well, lucky for you, I'm here and that totally hypothetical scenario with the especially hypothetical postulation can be addressed.
Columbus Day is a federal holiday (is it one in Colombia? At Columbia? Ohio State?), where we celebrate discovery and not pox-riven genocide or something along those lines. I've never been clear on why exactly Columbus gets his own holiday, but I assume it had to do with some weird fetishistic 19th devotion to the "great men" in history combined with some American exceptionalism and a hefty dose of nascent nationalism. Or maybe because people haven't had a day off since communist Labor Day and need to do some pre-Thanksgiving shopping 7 weeks ahead. I'm not some sort of calendar expert so answers continue to elude me.
I got to work today and got to work by bicycle. I wasn't especially observant, much more consumed with my own thoughts than anything that was going on around me (aside from avoiding cars and pedestrians and buses). And by consumed with my own thoughts, I mean thinking of nothing in particular and drifting from whistling parts of one bad song to another. I whistle far too much, both when bicycling and not, and sometimes I even make this bizarre clicking sound with my tongue on the roof of my mouth. I assume that it's quite annoying, but no one has every accosted me over it, so I suppose I'm lucky.
I was planning on riding 11th, but Pennsylvania Avenue was blocked before that on account of Taste of DC, I rode past 7th and realized as much, u-turned and rode up 7th, which parallels 11th to R street. 7th has a shared bus-bike lane and I rode smack in the middle of that lane, waiting for some non-bus driver to honk at me, ready to scream back "It's a bus-bike lane, you moron!" but this didn't come to pass and I guess I'm grateful. I don't know what riding down 7th would be like on a non-holiday morning, but I doubt it'd be very fun.
11 shuttle buses for the closed green/yellow line within 3 blocks of the convention center. Yr not doin' it right. 
R runs 7th (and beyond) to Massachusetts and is normally the best way to go west in the morning. That proved no exception this morning as I rode casually through stop lights behind another cyclist doing the same. There were very few drivers out and I declined to follow the law because it was more convenient not to follow it (which is the same thing that drivers and pedestrians do, in case you care about these kind of comparatives). It was hardly precarious.
Around 14th, I got rallied by a girl who was riding as if she was trying to prove something. Maybe she was just late, but I got the distinct impression that she wanted to convey to me that even though she's in work clothes and on a hybrid, that she meant business and was going to ride fast. Ok. That's cool.
I decided to ride up the Mass sidepath rather than in the street, even though there were fewer cars. I reckoned (because I do that) that fewer cars might actually be more of a problem since drivers confronted with both a wide road and one that's relatively open would have even less of a compunction to travel at a safe speed. At least that was my justification today.
Fun fact: the Bolivian embassy is next door to the British embassy. I wonder if the ambassadors ever awkwardly meet down at the mailbox and have to make shallow small talk like neighbors sometimes do. So long as it's not about roadwork.
Passed a woman on a CaBi riding up to Ward Circle. I really want to know where the CaBis arriving at AU come from. Does the dashboard have this info? Anyone have lots of time and love spreadsheets? Yeah, didn't think so.

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