Ride In 8/1: Folsom River Dubstep

Welcome to August, a month that didn't exist until the Romans said it did and named it to honor their favorite precocious cartoon dog. August is a month for digressions, but I think it's a month for regressions and I believe that's some sort of math concept and I've never taken a statistics course so I can't tell you what that is, but I can tell you that I'm 100% sure that I've completely lost hold of the sentence, in the same manner that I might loosen my grip on my handlebars when about to ride over some steel plates. Let not calamity ensue.

I saw a small woman or maybe a large girl riding a small purple motor scooter and she was hunched over and it looked bizarre and yet menacing. Later in my ride, I saw a superbiker with a purple wheelset. These things are fitting because purple is the color of Caesar, the Augustus, not the salad and I would encourage you to avoid all salad dressing that is purple, for it would be as equally likely as Brutus to stab you tens of times in the gut.

I rode through real Capitol Hill today, the part of the ever-expanding neighborhood ("from the Capitol to the River and from H Street to the River" would be the expansive definition matching the claims of real estate ads. By river, I mean Anacostia, not the Danube, a barrier that even the Romans didn't cross) from roughly Eastern Market metro to roughly New Jersey Avenue and I very much enjoyed looking at the nice houses and riding on the quiet roads and passing the underprogrammed parks and listening the very faint hum of the car traffic on the elevated highway that sits a few blocks to the south. From E Street SE, I turned left on New Jersey Avenue and then turned right into I Street SE and took that street until that street would take me no longer and were I to continue this whole Roman thing, I'd reference Aeneas or maybe Dido, but I won't (go/I won't sleep). Different Dido.

I arrived nearish to the Washington Channel and its boats and its all-you-can-eat seafood buffets (I, Seafood and I, Eat It is the gluttonous fish-themed sea-quel to I, Claudius) and I think that in an effort for the area thereabouts to gain in publicity and notoriety, the neighborhood should henceforth refer to the body of water as CSPAN, as that is a more recognizable Washington channel. In fact, if I had a yacht harbored in the Washington Channel, I would christen it Sea Span. The new development along the channel is going to be named The Wharf, but I don't know what the guy from Star Trek has to do with anything. It would be fitting to remind ourselves that Cap'n Kirk's middle name was Tiberius, the same as that of the stepson of Augustus. Were there video games in ancient Rome, one of the more popular one would have been Fiddle Nero, modeled after Guitar Hero.

Beach volleyball. Commence Olympic Fever. Be sure to get an Olympic tetanus shot if you do.

Up and along the Potomac by the Kennedy Center and I bounced along the walkway, which is brick and no patrician has of yet seen fit to leave it marble, though I imagine that bicycling on marble would be like bicycling on marbles, which would be both slippery and short-lived, like an eel out of water. Between that and the togas ("is that an eel in your toga" started many a Roman joke), it's a good thing the Romans didn't have bicycles.

Four lanes of car traffic through a park and we should be happy to ride on a crappy six foot wide path? Ok, just checking.

Rome was built on seven hills and I feel like I climbed the equivalent of seven hills stacked atop each other as I slowly made my way from the park trail up to Calvert Street (Cecilius Calvert, Lord Baltimore was a Roman Catholic) and I caught my breath as I waited for the red light to change before making another left and then climbing another hill, even slower this time, on a street named after Grover Cleveland or perhaps Grover Cleveland Alexander. The whole ride up the hill I kept repeating to myself "just keep going forward" and that seemed apt because I very much desired to just keep moving forward. I found one last bit of effort near the intersection of Garfield and Massachusetts, where I pedaled with extra verve in order to not too terribly inconvenience and slow some drivers that waited behind me. All in all, this trip sort of kicked my ass, like the Goths did Valens at Adrianople. You could read about that in Ammianus Marcellinus, and you can read about that flash of red, not purple, hair in Ammianus in Auerbach or you could just take my word for it, which is something those kids on Reading Rainbow (ROYGBIV, where the purple is violet) were never content to allow you to do. But I suppose that's a reference to an entirely different Star Trek character.