Rides 4/9: recoil from the coil

To the trees once more. It's not that I even love the trees, but the trees are what we have and many people from around the world come to the trees to gawk and with the trees pretty much nearly right on my way from home to work it seems downright wasteful to not take a moment of two to stop to take them in. We are nearly at peak bloom. (Bill Murray's character in Rushmore was Herman Blume. Whether he was peak, I might or might not say.)

sol victus

I don't spend a lot of time around the Tidal Basin. This might be do to my lifelong fear of basins. A lot of people say that the Jefferson Memorial is their favorite and at one time in my life, a time when I didn't know very much about myself, which is to say callow youth, I would have agreed with them, though now I can some with some degree of certainty in callow adulthood that it's very much not my favorite. Lincoln is far better and hands-down. Perhaps because he's sitting and Jefferson stands and why should you trust a man who stands over a man who sits, which is a far superior way of being. I suppose if they ever make a monument to a fully supine president, I'd likely considerate that my favorite, but that's neither here nor there. [But it'd be Clinton, right?] Anyway, a lot of people don't know this, but I read it on one of the plaques by the Tidal Basin that the Founding Fathers so loved the the classical that not only did they attempt to emulate it in their governance and architecture, but they build the tidal basin to stage mock naval battles, just as they did at the flooded Colosseum. I really didn't know that. Learn something new everyday.

Ohio Drive to the usual path along the river, but then I quit the path and moved over to the empty roadway. In order to facilitate morning car traffic (at least that of it heading towards the monumental core), the US Park Police shut down some lanes to allow for more direct zooming. So, you've got two closed-to-cars lanes on a perfectly good road just sitting there, completely empty. Because. So, I accidentally missed seeing the 'road closed' sign and rode on the otherwise empty road past the Kennedy Center and the Watergate to Virginia Avenue. It's perfectly possible that doing this was illegal. But seems UTTERLY CRAZY to leave a road empty to traffic that could use it, namely bicyclists. So I might start doing this everyday. And I'll be sure to write you from the gulag once they catch me. [fun fact: this scofflawism is somewhat brought to you by a Gear Prudence questioner who asked if this was legit. So maybe I can write off my soon-to-be tickets as a business expense. Research!]

daily ciclovia maybe
On the way home, I took Massachusetts to Q Street to 14th, where I locked up my bike and bought some sushi made by robots. Then I went back over to 15th instead of riding in the bike lanes (?) on 14th. Around 15th and K, HONK HONK HONK HONK HONK HONK HONK HONK HONK HONK HONK HONK HONK HONK HONK HONK HONK HONK HONK HONK HONK. I'd hate to know how bad the traffic would've been had not helpful drivers reminded those in front of them to go. Car traffic, really more than anything else, inconveniences bicyclists. This is undeniable. But it's not nearly as bad for bicyclists than it is for other drivers, so for the most part, I don't find it that big of a deal. I do think a lot about drivers and generally what my valence should be towards them when they're blocking an intersection and miserable and ragey and wanting to be moving more than anything else in the world. On one level, I really do sympathize. Like, I've been there. It sucks. But on another level. it's like 'um, driving in downtown DC at evening rush hour. How did you think this was gonna go? Like, did you just move here? from another planet?' Like, drivers had to ahead of time that not only was bad traffic a possibility, but pretty much a guarantee. AND YET, the reaction to it more often than not is shock rather than resignation. I don't know. It's something.

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