1/9/12

Ride In 1/9


But first, some words on the tuxedo button delivery. This occupied a couple of hours, maybe, on Saturday and on the whole was rather uneventful, but fun nonetheless. I think the DC leapfrogged cycle chic and landed somewhere near cycle formal based on the complete ambivalence of everyone I rode past. At one point, I saw a girl point and heard her say "Mommy, look!" but it was directed at the guy riding a recumbent (yes, he had a grey beard as all recumbent riders do). Anyway, if anyone asked why I was wearing a tuxedo, I was going to say "I'm late for my wedding!" which would have also been the excuse had I been caught jaywheeling by law enforcement. This wasn't in fact the case, as my wedding happened over five years ago, but it was the same tuxedo I wore that day. Apparently, styles have changed or I've lost 30 pounds. I also considered the rejoinder "I'm here to gentrify your neighborhood," but that might have been too much. The whole thing was a blast and I thank both Adam and Stephen for accompanying me and videographying me and I thank both M. and C. for their buttons purchases and generosity. I have two more tuxedo deliveries left, so maybe next time will be more eventful. Or, ideally, not.
That was Saturday and now it's Monday and it was considerably colder this morning than it was on the weekend afternoons. But not as cold as I thought it was and I should have heeded Coco Chanel's advice for winter bike commuting about taking the last thing off you put on.Well, maybe it wasn't originally directed at winter bike commuters, but it's the same idea and anyway, Chanel sells bike now or whatever. The fleece I wore atop my long sleeve shirt was too much and I was a bit hot from the get-go. But not my face, which was quite cold from the air. It smelled like winter. We might get sleet later.
Those Occupy people are still there. Occupying, I guess.
I'd like it if bike lanes were striped through intersections, or at least dashed. I'd especially like the bike lane on East Capitol which ends at First NE to be striped across the intersection to the Capitol grounds. I think that this would provide a useful reminder to turning drivers that bicyclists might be coming and to use caution when turning as many bicyclists might be heading straight and not turning.
On the Capitol grounds, I saw a pen constructed of some parking barriers and some caution tape. It was closed on three sides, but had an opening on the fourth. I think it was a lobbyist trap.
Here's a view of Pennsylvania Avenue.

The buildings seemed much grayer in real life than they do in this picture. It's almost as if they were built in a way to camouflage into the winter cloud cover. To the best of my knowledge, this wasn't the case. You can see in the picture some poor suckers driving. Sure, it's massively subsidized, but is is fun?
There were many, many bicyclists out this morning. I think that the "riding habit" (a term I was introduced to in the Robert Fogelson's Downtown with regard to streetcars) has set in amongst a fair portion of twit urbanites. This is a good thing. And since bicycling isn't subject to the same kind of price pressure as public transportation use, the habit might prove stickier. But I'm not an economist or a sociologist , so I don't know. I am admirer, however, of Austrian Home Economics. Apfelstrudel ftw!
I was shoaled on R by a guy carrying a yoga mat. Namaste, dude. He also had two u locks slung across his handlebars. Maybe one was for his yoga mat. Ward off downward facing larceny.
I ride the sidewalk up Massachusetts and this is a popular choice for bicyclists, even those riding downhill. Accordingly, it gets sort of crowded, in a relative sort of way. I watched a guy shake his head a bicyclist who passed him too closely going to downhill. He seemed miffed. I sort of smiled at him with an "I've been there, buddy" kind of look (I think?), but he didn't seem very happy. When you're passing someone on foot while heading downhill, you should slow down and definitely try to give them at least a little warning, with a ding or an "on your left" or something. It's the polite thing to do.
That bike that got lassoed to the sign is still there. Guess the owner is still mad at it.
There were probably other things that happened, but I can't recall them. The ride in was exceedingly pleasant this morning and I'm looking forward to the return leg.

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