Rides 8/11 and 8/12: frango

I am utterly besotted with my Ortlieb Brompton bag, which is tangerine in color and a complete and total extravagance. It's the kind of bag that makes me want to pack things and then set off on a long, small-wheeled journey to some exotic clime outside, but not too far outside the Beltway. The bag makes me sing and sing I did: "Hey Mr. Tangerine Bag, hold some stuff for me. I'm not sleepy and there's no place that I'm going to" (except work).

That was yesterday. I did ride to work and then home again. The rides themselves were unremarkable, bordering on forgettable. I struggled some climbing up 31st and I plan to address this by soon (soon!) putting an internal gear hub into the Brompton and then perhaps gaining some reliable shiftiness. It's taken me only three years to realize that I should've done this in the first place. Oh well.

The weather this morning was confusingly pleasant and I hope that you got the chance to bike through it. August in DC, per urban legend, is unremittingly awful, but I guess whichever Olympian deity controls the weather (yes, I believe in Olympian deities. I guess you could say that I'm Greek Orthodox) temporarily forget and so is luring us into some soon-sprung trap via the means of a few decent days. I'm sure the gig'll be up soon enough.

I watched a fellow bike commuter on Pennsylvania Avenue ring her bell 10 times at someone standing in the bike lane and then as she was about 3 feet away go 'YOU'RE STANDING IN THE BIKE LANE' and while this is a factually accurate assessment of where the person was standing, I'm not sure what outcome was hoped for by my fellow bike commuter. By the time she yelled, there wasn't much time to get out of the way and frankly, I'm fairly certain that the person standing in the bike lane heard the 10 dings and knew very well where she was standing and elected to do nothing about it. I question the efficacy of interactions like this and while I guess I can't really begrudge a bicyclist for being miffed that someone is, indeed, standing in the middle of the bike lane, I'm not entirely sure what's to be gained from acting of out pique- the same kind of pique that inspires the vindictive honking that haunts my ears' nightmares. I'm likely just a pushover (FUN FACT: I'm completely a pushover, in lots of things!) but maybe it'd be easier to just go around than make a big deal out of it? To yell at a person who's just standing somewhere, who's not really causing you any harm and who you see and can be quite easily avoided, seems so... inhumane? I don't really know if that's the word (or sentiment) that I'm going for, but it's something along those lines. And I guess I can't really be too mad about a bicyclist expressing frustration (because these things are frustrating!), but it just seems like maybe yelling at people standing in a badly compromised bike lane isn't the hill to die on, so to speak. I don't know. Why must feelings be so complicated?

New Gear Prudence is about weirdos.

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