Ride Home 6/11: Mail from the Scarecrows

Ogre? More like Slow-gre. I wasn't feeling it yesterday (it being verve. I did feel heat, humidity and deep wells of lassitude) and so I propelled myself at a speed barely faster than a slow trot. Having no horses by which to pace myself, that's only an estimation. One of the virtues (I guess) of keeping track of my rides for the past two days on Strava (STRAAAAAAAAAVVAAAAAAAAA!) was learning (though I already knew this, so maybe a better word is confirming) that the difference between one of my 'try to go fast' commutes  and one of my 'take your time' commutes is six minutes. Six minutes isn't a lot of minutes (more than 5, fewer than 7 say mathematicians) and in the summer heat and balminess, I'll gladly make the trade of one tenth of an hour of extra time on the bike for more than substantial increase in enjoyment of the trip. In fact, I think I'd make this trade in all seasons.

I shall confess, but only obliquely, to violating my vow of unfiddling. I shall spare you the details of how much time I spent fiddling, where I publicly fiddled, how inept and ineffectual said fiddling was, and how I've, this morning, the day after fiddling, fiddled once more to make up for the ad hoc, in transit fiddling I did yesterday on the ride home. I am very close to taking a friend of the blog's advice and getting a proper bike fitting, if only to sate my neurosis (and to properly fit my bike). I will offer some unsolicited advice that you should not needlessly fiddle with your bike roadside as the conditions are less than ideal and, if you're inclined towards self-consciousness, you might come to suspect that a man nearby talking on his cellphone is conveying in Chinese nothing other than the topic of your mechanical ineptitude to his conversation partner. One of the most hilarious consequences of my fiddling was subsequently having my multitool fall from my bag, through the spokes on my rear wheel, and onto the pavement of K Street as I attempted to cross it. I scurried back and picked it up and considered my lesson learnt.

Normally, L Street is my preferred route but sometimes I find myself on Pennsylvania avenue west of 17th Street and it's a considerably more direct route. It has no bike facilities and fewer bicyclists (heading east at least) and it's a bit of a mess with drivers trying to head home to Virginia. So, tradeoffs.

Passed by a Bikeshare commuter. Passed by other bike commuters as well. Didn't care. Don't care.

Pulled a u-turn and chased down some people collecting signatures for the local effort to legalize cannabis and added my name to the list. I don't (and haven't ever) use cannabis, but it seems like a thing that should be legal given all of the terrible repercussions and consequences of its being prohibited. Plus, it's always good to sign petitions for ballot measures. Democracy and whatnot. I hope you all will sign my forthcoming ballot measure petition for a referendum to legalize the Idaho Stop. Of course, rather than stop at the polls to vote, you'd probably just treat them like a yield sign and we would lose.

No rides to work today (Thursday), but I should be back at it tomorrow. I guess there's been some heavy rain lately, but I've managed to avoid it. My suggestions to those of you who haven't is to go slow, use lights, and wrap yourself in super-absorbent paper towels mummy-style. Sure, it might limit your ability to operate your bike, but the reports in the local newspapers of roving hordes of bicycling mummies would be really fun to read. If you'd rather not don paper towel mummy garb, you can grab a DC flag and show your support for Statehood. Of my favorite hoods, DC statehood ranks above Robin and the brand of ice cream, so I'll be doing my flag selfie (flageflie? that's sounds like a whipping) tomorrow. You can too.

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