Ride In 2/22: Crimea River

In the spirit of combating bike commuter ennui (I think this is in the DSM 5), I opted for barbecue-style bike commuting, one defined not by mopped-on sauces or dry rubs, but instead signified by its lowness and slowness. If all bikes rides can be measured on a scale from 1 to "Dutch grandma," I was definitely at the "grandma" end of the spectrum. In fact, I see no reason why all bikes rides cannot be measured on such a scale and each gradient in the scale should be assigned a Colville-Andersen number (or European nationality and description, like Dutch grandma, Danish milkman, French mailman, etc) much as the way hot peppers are described in Scovilles. If this takes off, which it most assuredly never will, please mail all royalty checks, of which there will be none, to TFTS headquarters, which is my couch at home.
When I first started biking to work, in the course of deciding which bike to purchase as my daily commuter, I tested a few that made me feel like a milkman (upright, sturdy, slow, anachronistic) and I instead opted, as many others in this milieu do, for a hybrid, which made me feel sportier and athletic and all that. It was a good choice and the bike served me well and I very much enjoyed it at the time. But, whether through the pernicious influence of the internet or through the pernicious influence of sorcery, sometimes I crave the genuine milkman experience (not a Soderbergh film), so this morning I made it happen by taking the town bike outside of its usual bounds (namely west of 7th NW) and riding it to work. I also didn't wear a helmet. You may judge. I wore my regular work clothes and a jaunty cap. You may judge the jauntiness of the cap as well as my use of jaunty, which is an adjective I exclusively use to describe caps.

That's a picture of my basket and my messenger bag and my coffee mug.
That's a picture of a cone that might be giving mixed messages to Spanish speakers.
All in all, the ride was quite nice. Many bicyclists out, but no so many as to inconvenience me. Barely any going my way and the ones that were seemed nice enough. I don't think I even noticed especially crummy behavior from anyone, which means I have very little to report. I mean, not that I feel compelled to report only the bad stuff. I'd report the good stuff too, if anything really stood out. I mean, I took a picture of that cone, so that was something, right?
TFTS guest micro-post. Oh, and here's a bike commute movie (also not by Soderbergh).
I'd like DDOT to install a WATCH FOR PEDS AND BIKES sign at the intersection of Massachusetts and 34th. I'd also like them to install a mobile speed camera that takes pictures of drivers making right turns on red without stopping at the red. I'd also like a red rider bb gun and world peace.
I watched another bicycle commuter turn from Garfield onto Mass and ride up the street in between the go-straight lane and the right-turn lane.Watching someone else commute by bike seems to be much more harrowing than actually doing it, which seems pretty safe and easy. It's always interesting to see how poorly some drivers react to having to slightly slow down or give a little extra room. I wonder how they behave when there's real adversity in their lives.
It was a really pleasant morning and I'm getting excited for spring. Aside from fall, spring is the best. Unless you like summer and winter, which are also excellent seasons. Definitely top four, all of them.


  1. I saw you, but then I said, certainly that cannot be who I think it is, for this man has no helmet and is carrying gallons of fresh milk (or work things in baskets, it was hard to tell).

    thats all.

  2. I like the idea of a scale to rate rides. I usually resort to a binary: good or bad (plus or minus, yes or no) with most being in the plus column.

  3. I just realized that today is Ash Wednesday, which (no offense) weirds me out and always catches me off guard when I see my first be-ashed (technical term) forehead. I've also noticed that there are a lot more Catholics in DC than the wild Idaho wilderness from whence I came. So anyway...I wonder if bike commuters are less likely to partake in the ash-ifying (another technical term) and what can be inferred from that if they are indeed less likely. Feel free to use that as food for thought on the ride home....

  4. Ha! I get it. Because "va" means "go." Maybe it's supposed to be motivational? In all seriousness, I have had to resist the urge to kick that cone over all week. Public Works Orange is to arrogant bike commuters as red is to bulls, I guess.