Ride In 11/27: Whittle While You Work....as a Professional Whittler!

Tomorrow, Mayor Vincent Gray will clarify that u-turns across the Pennsylvania Avenue Cycle Track are, in fact, illegal. At roughly, the same time, I will be emerging from a fighter jet in a flight suit under a banner that reads "Mission Accomplished" or maybe "Family Love Michael." Coincidentally, last night I had a dream in which I saw Mayor Gray down by Nats Park and I told him that I was going to support him in 2014 because he's done a pretty good job, except for that one thing. In my dream, he wryly smiled and repeated "Yeah, that one thing." No more DeBonis before bed, I guess. I don't want to claim to have some kind of cosmic psychic connection to the mayor because that would be a crazy thing to assert and would reveal me to be a complete and total coot, so instead I'll just allow this sentence to trail off.

As you can almost tell from this picture, Union Station reconstruction is somewhat progressing!

I think the next step might be to replace the dirt pit with grass or maybe even a paved plaza or maybe we keep the dirt pit and get some sweet dune buggies because who wouldn't want to race dune buggies after a long Amtrak trip?

A bunch of trucks parked on the wrong side of the street on First NE.

Dunbar? More like dun wrong.
Yes, I get that it's more convenient to park on the wrong side of the street, but really? This seems especially brazen. And it makes it especially craptacular for a cyclist coming from Columbus Circle, unless of course, the cyclist in question loves to be forced into salmoning into oncoming car traffic, most of which is shuttle buses and taxis. There are two things about this: 1) it used to be one way. Here's an old of the street. Noted the white dashes. (White Dash was also the name of the signature cologne of 1936 Olympics bronze medalist, Tinus Osendarp)

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But times, they have changed and now there's yellow lines. Secondly, I'm pretty sure that car traffic doesn't or can't use First NE going in that direction. Maybe drivers will get to use it when Columbus Circle is done, but I'm pretty sure it's just bikes for now. So, there's no other real constituency, and certainly not one that comes frequently enough or is weighty enough, to get these truck drivers to park somewhere else. How will the cycle track impact all this? I don't know.

Turns out that I bike on R Street from First Street NE to 23rd Street NW, which is more than two miles. That's two miles every morning. And I have virtually nothing to say about it.

Roads were a bit slick this morning, so I made sure to go nice and slow. Science suggests that it takes longer to come to a complete stop on a wet road, but science suggests a lot of stuff. Science might as well be called Suggesty Pete. In any case, be careful on wet roads. It would be silly to fall down because you were riding too quickly on a wet road and it would be especially silly to ride into the back of someone or something because you couldn't come to a complete stop. Also silly? Pies to the face.

I see a lot of the same people every day, especially on Massachusetts, and I just want to issue a blanket hello for all the times I haven't said hello when we've passed each other before. It's like we know each other.

Yes, sometimes, I am the guy yelling "stop" at drivers for trying to bully pedestrians out of a crosswalk. They should stop. This happens most frequently near the end of my ride when I'm cranky from the hill climbing and that my ride is nearly over. It's also where drivers tend to be the most jerk-ish about it, so it's really a perfect storm. There are many bad things that people do with their cars and many worse things than this, but inching up on someone trying to get across the street just really rankles me. Car bullies stink.


  1. This morning a guy left turning from P onto 14th St northbound had the nerve to cut off a pedestrian AND GIVE HER A DIRTY LOOK as she exclaimed "Are you crazy?" I told her exactly what I thought of him and she expressed her agreement.

  2. That double yellow on 1st st between Mass and the service tunnels for Union Station is quite incorrect. There is no possible routing to get a car going in that direction from Mass Ave. It is possible to get a bike that way, but its obviously way too wide for just a bike path.

    There is plenty of room to make it a one-way street with parallel parking on both sides, and still fit a bike lane there with the sidewalk on both sides, and I'm confident that is the plan. It will bring the MBT all the way to Columbus circle.