Ride In 7/31: 1099-MISC

I'm not a health nut. I'm not much of a nut at all and I'm barely a health legume. The rush of exercise and the surge of endorphins aren't things that gets me especially jazzed. However, there is something, sometimes, especially pleasant about the expurgation that comes along with physical activity. It's oddly cleansing, even though it's literally the exact opposite of that. I also find bike commuting to be cathartic and that might be one of its best-kept secrets, though a secret no longer if I'm sharing it with you. Mens sana and whatnot.

Yield must not mean what I think it means or maybe it does mean that and I'm not the one who is constantly misunderstanding its meaning. Were one to photograph me at the places along my route where I get the dirtiest looks from drivers, invariably there would almost always be a yield sign in the background. (note: invariably followed by an almost? what does that even mean?) There's a yield sign by Lincoln Park where the traffic from North Carolina Avenue merges with East Capitol and, though there's both a sign and a bike lane, I'm almost never given the right of way, especially when traffic isn't flowing smoothly. Boo.

I took 6th NE today and rode past H Street and up to M Street, which I found out was one way east and I wanted to go west, so I took to the sidewalk for two blocks and I'm still mad about how stupid it is that we have so many one way streets for reasons that I assume have to do with car parking. I'm fairly certain that the greatest enemy to the swift movement of people in a city is the storage of cars in public space. That or ACME fly paper but life isn't always a Road Runner Cartoon. You have no idea how many bike lanes look like they're going through a tunnel but instead it's just painted on a wall. And don't even get my started on all of the TNT-laden birdseed.

M goes under the railroad tracks and then I got myself onto the Metropolitan Branch Trail which I took for the equivalent of a bunch of blocks before decamping at R, riding the contraflow lane for one block and then crossing North Capitol to again cross Florida and continue on my way across town. It was around this time that I determined that I think my bottom bracket is creaking. (Creaking Bottom Bracket will also be the name of the "team" when I fill out my 2013 NCAA basketball tournament picks.) This article suggests that it's almost never really the bottom bracket that's creaking and instead of some other bike part that's making noises, but even if that's the case, I'm no better equipped to deal with that. The standard advice seems to be to tighten all the bolts and lube everything, so I guess I'll go about doing that.

There's no better way to assure that someone will shoal you than to remove your coffee cup at a red light and take a sip.

The climb up Massachusetts today was fine. I stuck to the road for most of it and I was given a fair amount of space by most of the drivers and there'd really be no reason for them to do otherwise. It's almost August and allegedly DC shuts down in August (except for those of us who work in higher edumacashun when it's the exact opposite so I'll preemptively apologize if the posts become even less regular) and I'm hoping for even banal and relaxed rides to and from work. I did have a bus driver races to get around me and subsequently cut me off not once but twice and I would have considered kicking his bus, but that's not a very mature response to these things of things and also I probably would have hurt my foot.

1 comment:

  1. A good hidden source of bottom bracket-like noise is a loose rear skewer. Usually overlooked, and fairly common b/c people actually take their rear wheels off from time to time.