10/5/11

Ride In 10/5

A slight "nexus of the universe" problem befalls me any time I approach the area of North Capitol, Florida, New York, Met Branch Trail, red line metro, and M street, First NE, and First NW. I'd like to say that it isn't my fault and diagonal roads are confusing for everyone, but I don't think this is the case. After riding down to 6th and crossing H (I kept riding because I checked the streetcar timetables and I didn't want to wait), I kept riding until the bike lane stopped at Florida, wherein I realized that I wasn't going to ride on Florida and then passed decided to ride a little on the sidewalk and then turn down 4th Street. Should have I turned left on M? Is that even legal? I get so confused because cross streets in this part of town (broadly understood) switch from bidirectional to one way every other block and it's never the one way that I expect. Why does this happen? Was Pierre L'Enfant some maniacal sadist? Or if this wasn't originally part of L'Enfant's plan, shouldn't some curmudgeon Federal Capital City Council of 100 or whatever it called demand orginalism and get this changed, much in the way they fight overhead wires? It's basically impossible to get across town without taking some preposterous winding route. Here's M Street. Look how many times it goes from one way to bidirectional to the other way between Thomas Circle and Florida, NE! This is no way to run a city!
B.S. 
What is so hard about designating some crosstown routes one direction or the other? Don't tell me it's the diagonal streets either. Not because that's not right, but just because I don't want to hear it. Maybe it's because M crosses the highway that is New York Avenue. I call it a highway because it has a median and there's no proper regulation for traffic (including bikes and pedestrians) to easily cross it.
It really is.
I have problems with other cross town routes (like N Street, which stops to make way for the highway that is North Capitol), but I'll save those for other days. I rode down Florida to 4th and 4th to M and M to First NE and crossed New York (but couldn't keep going, not that I really wanted to because I'd be right back on Florida again, because it was one way in the opposite direction) and tried to cut through what I thought was a driveway but a parking lot attendant signaled to me that it was closed. I rode down the sidewalk at New York and up the sidewalk on North Capitol and crossed at R, convinced once again that I was going in the right direction and on the right route. Pretty heavy volume of bicycle traffic today, with a mix of semi-scofflaws and scofflaws. I don't get why people ride out to wait at medians. Seems dumb and it's not like you really gain that much time.
I took R to 15th, desciding to eschew Massachusetts for a slog of a different kind, that is to say, I think is "Bitch Hill" (the one next to Meridian Park) to Fuller and down Fuller to stop at the light at 16th. At that point two LDS missionaries rode past me and the trailing one said "I feel as tired as you look." Screw you. Either convert me or shut the hell up. (I didn't actually say these things)
Fuller dumps out, sort of, to Columbia Road, where there was a train of bicyclists riding between the slowed cars and the sidewalks. The crossing guard there ignored me and I waited patiently to get on my way, only abetted by a very kindly driver who stopped to shoo me on my way.
Columbia to Calvert (cars blocking the bike lane, but I just rode around them) and Calvert to Cleveland. Not  A very slow climb of Cleveland to Garfield, which went by even slower, then down Mass and to work. I'm not crazy about this route either. Instead of one longish uphill, it's three shorter ones and "Bitch Hill" sort of did a number on me. But it's always good to try something new and the weather was perfectly reasonable. I'd try the same route back, but I'm pretty sure that the cycletrack won't be extended to Euclid by this afternoon and I don't much feel like salmoning down 15th for those couple of blocks.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Post a Comment