So, as we learned in meteorology class in elementary school, the season of autumn comes round once a year when the earth passes between the sun and a giant jack-o-lantern, frightening the leaves off the trees and causing the tint and hues of people's clothing to turn dark orange and brown. (I went to public school). It also causes temperatures to drop (space jack-o-lanterns are highly photon-absorbant- they're like the Bounty of gamma rays) and that means that bike commuters must don additional layers of clothing to keep themselves warm when exposed to the borderline brisk temperatures. I might have overreacted this morning when I decided to put on tights (yes, tights) underneath my shorts, but I'd prefer that to be needlessly cold. I think ultimately it was the right choice since it didn't cause me to sweat in a way that being overdressed (like in a tuxedo?) can.
East Capitol to Mass to past Union Station to an ill-advised semi-u-turn to E Street to approximately zero sightings of Bruce Springsteen's accompanying musicians. E Street still has a bike lane, but it was slow going and slower still once I got close to downtown, which in my estimation starts somewhere around 6th street, past the various court buildings and their associated construction. Along there, I was being followed by another biker, who correctly and politely, avoiding shoaling and kept me happy through general concordance with bike rules that are generally widely unspoken but ought not to be. After 6th, I was like "I should ride up to 5th and then ride that up to R," not fully realizing that I had passed 5th a block before on account of not being used to riding east to west in the morning. Instead, I turned up 7th and then rode to G, which might as well have been E since it was the same general stop-at-every-light kind of road. Impressive track stand by some guy in what I think was a navy blue corduroy coat. He had a very bike commuter in a Wes Anderson movie vibe about him and I can only hope that he works in some precious Wes Anderson-approved creative class job, like tennis star or deep sea diver.
E to 15th to R. A good amount of bike traffic on 15th and an equally sizeable number of Northface jackets. It's not quite that cold. I'd like to get a new jacket, one that isn't day-glo yellow, but the ever-earlier setting sun will soon make it suck that the brightness will be increasingly called for.
All sorts of impolite riding on R. Some big dude (not as big as Big Sean, but still big enough for me to want to get out of his way rather than get barreled over) on a Scott racing bike was pushing pretty hard on his morning ride, as was a girl on a Linus Mixte, neither of whom very much appreciated my attempts to stay stopped at red lights. At one point, there was a bunch of bicyclists that manifested themselves at a stop light arrayed horizontally rather than vertically, as if we were at the start of some race. Curious. I think that R street is worth of it's own daily commuter blog, maybe with pictures, since it carries such a wide variety of DC bike types. I'll gladly cede this beat to any other takees.
Curiously, around R and 22nd, Scott guy sat up and waved me around (to his right) and I was like "ok" and pushed ahead to Massachusetts. I glanced back and it looked like he was riding the same way and I was like "ok, curious. what's you deal?" (to myself of course) and I thought that maybe he was going to try to pass me on the Mass hill (because I'm slightly delusional and I assume that his kindness was really just him trying to set me up for greater embarrassment) and my paranoia was enough to push me up the bottom half of the hill at a clip that exceeded his (or maybe he just turned?) and by the time I reached the Observatory, I was thoroughly put out. And then my kidneys starting hurt, which I'm going to assume is some sort of sign of dehydration, but I welcome the input of any nephrologists reading. (Check this. Spell check is anti-science. It doesn't recognize nephrologist, but suggests phrenologist instead. What the?)
And then, perhaps suffering from the acute medical condition of "brain fever" or perhaps just trying to distract myself from thinking about the remainder of the slog, I started wondering why, with the sucesss of Wicked and Clybourne Park, why hasn't there been any prequel to Annie that focuses on her waster parents. Why'd they give her up? What happened to them? There's got to be more to that story and me and the entirety of the population of 11 year old girls in America demand answers. Like I said, brain fever.
Down Massachusetts again and up the other side. Why must institutions of higher learning be set upon hills? With the exception of GW, I think every one in town is set up on some considerable elevation or at least moderate lift (of course, I'm sure I'm forgetting some). Oh well. Anima sana and such.