Game Face :)

Okay, it wasn’t necessary until the uphill into the parking lot stretch — otherwise it was a refreshing ride in.   Yesterday was a bus day — 60 degrees and warmber, but  w/ 50 mph winds that did not abate by the time I went home (I even drove to the church thing).

Today winds down to 20 (it says gusts to 40 but not on my trip, but the 20 felt right) … temp down to 36 so the drizzle was horizontal and fluffy at times… but it didn’t get through the layers and I’ll hopefully get to coast home!

I love turning *off* the mtd.org page when I get to work and don’t have to pay attention to it 🙂

Back in the saddle

Last week it was the bus every day.   Actual snow a couple of times… yes, two of those days I’d have almost certianly been fine but it was “watch for slippery spots” and… I like the bus.  Oh, and .. riding *every day* the previous week with extras and with lots of layers… there was chafing.   It’s almost healed…
Saturday — tons of rain and 30+ mph winds.   Got out for errands ahead of time (as prescribed by local meteorologist on twitter and yes, he might have had me in the back of his  mind when he posted to do errands now if you didn’t want to do them in pouring rain) so there were 3.6 miles in.     Lady w/ handicapped tags 294 393 or something like that (I know the two nines and that the last digits were one apart and the first digits were low)  rolled the stop sign at Kirby as if I didn’t exist and yes, she got an earful as she went by right in front of me.   All signs were it was an “invisible gorilla” situation where she really didn’t see me at all because she didn’t expect something.

The “thank you for shoveling your walk” sign blew into the yard and … it seemed to think it should go into the garage and that we’d have no more snow this season 🙂   I hope it’s right.

This morning I got an “I like your antennae!”  from a bus stop waiter 🙂   THe little headband on the helmet with the shamrocks at the end bring smiles….

Ready to ride!!!

Nippy :)

16 this morning — but winds at 9-ish, not 29-ish so on the bike 🙂

The generator light’s working… so I’m on the tank, which takes longer.  Still beat the “mass departure” and saw the 9B early and late, so I could wave at the folks I rode with yesterday.

Fellow on bike with plastic crate with laundry tub in it was coming out of the street w/ Virginia Theatre (or whichever one has Robert Ebert’s statue).   I don’t know the timing of arrivals, but there was a car to his left.   Once I was past they went and … the guy on the bicycle … pulled forward and made a left turn in front of the car.   The driver said something about thinking he was going the other way (the driver was just going straight ) and .. .guy on bike called him an a-hole and threatened to punch him in the face, and rode on.

So many better options starting with not making a left turn from right side of the lane… 3 seconds’ of pause and the car would have been through (and since it’s a one-way road, the ‘leftness’ doesn’t complicate things).

I almost felt guilty about possibly raising expectations of people on bicycles by not doing stuff like that…

Construction happening with old buildings coming down but it’s not as much stuff on the roads.

Riding by “Rafters” on Bradley and imagining it as a community hangout like the Independent Media Center is in Urbana…

Bits and pieces

There’s a thread on bikejournal for riding a “bit” in a day — that would be half of two bits, or between 12.5 adn 25 miles.

Yesterday I failed at getting there — but succeeded YES YES YES in getting the Blaze light on the Transport. I’d swung by Champaign Cycle Friday  with the Xtracycle (because it’s an easier ride) and the wires were trimmed, cleaned, and … the light worked fine on the handy Townie bike (I’d have gotten that, not the Transport, except they come in two whole, wrong sizes).   The townie light didn’t work on … my hub.

Now, I’d failed at getting the thing to work on the Transport, but I didn’t have a nice wire stripper (or the motor memory or the nice table) to make sure things were clean.   So… I successfully went at it — cleaned the surfaces, whacked it on w/ hammer… and even *found the mounting stuff*  sorting through boxes and drawers. (Invisible victory – desk drawer cleaned to the bottom and swabbed out.)

That said, the mounting is a Sue Jones job because I  didn’t try to put it on my overcrowded handlebar — but I did find the discipline to secure all that wiring instead of tossing it into said basket.   Zip ties and inner tubes, yea!

This m orning’s commute — 49 degrees and 20 mph tailwind.   Saw three taxis – the first did the same “pass on the right then turn left” move that SVA BBY2 did a few Januaries ago… but safely and without rolling down the window to verbally harrass me.

My speculator was activated by a sporty sedan with license plate “161   161”  … and what looked like Superman logo on the back…. what’s the story 🙂

The stuff that pre-break was tearing bricks apart is now at hauling mud around.   Happily it was a bus behind me when there was a truck just stopped in the right lane and gobs of mud in the road, I could take the left lane and navigate safely.

 

Bicycles Bicycles :)

I have been using the car thing here and there… but Christmas Day I actually just Went Out For A Ride on th e9 mile loop.

The 26th I rode to First Financial Bank.   Almost regretting closing that account because it’s really easy to access their bike parking, and … it was a really good experience, that restored my faith that some people *can* manage.   It was this person’s first time closing a CD.   She reached for and got a binder and found the directions pretty instantly.   She followed the directions.   Yes, there was a time when the screen didn’t match the directions.   Picked up phone:   “this is __ from Philo Road.  Can I talk to __ or __?”   and in less than 2 minutes things were fixed.    Another thing that wasn’t working… another call.   Finally, time to write the cashier’s check.   “Oops, above my limit.”   One more phone call — okay, two, because the first everybody was either at lunch or on vacation.  Yes, solvable from the distance.

Yes, it took a bit longer, but no “oops, this person is gone, come back tomorrow.”

So I took the little thing across the street to the bank with double the interest and locked it into a CD there.   Here, the screen decided to ask my banker for … a password, which it didn’t usually do.   Again, though, a phone call or two solved it.   Banker knew me from Parkland 😉

Finally went to credit union to open an account.   I had totally forgotten about that kind of “prove yourself” process.

Those car things

… dropped the car thing at AJ’s service.   Yes, they called and said “air filters are dirty,” and I’ve heard that this is a common ‘let’s get more money from you’ ploy… except that, in fact, I have no idea when air filters were last even looked at and … yea, it’s been since 1/17 since the oil was changed (still < 5000 miles).

Also making the arrangements for getting the thing back to its rightful owners (brother’s family who got it through estate) …  questioning the decision and then walking to the bus stop from AJ’s and that just.  being.  easy and natural.   Yes, I was 20 minutes late to work (I’d let them know)… my lifestyle lets me do that (and if I’d gotten there really at opening and out… I’d have been on time).     I pretty much never have to be anywhere in a real hurry.

Tomorrow I’ll bus it to Lincoln Square and walk back over… get the thing… pay the 90 bucks for the job … and talk to them about oh, what to get done to it so Nephew T. gets a prime car.   (Reminds me of when I was selling my Mazda to eldest brother to be a cab…  no, I said to the tire people, it’s not going to be driven *like* a cab, it’s going to *be* a cab… get me the good ones.)

Then drive it loooong Wednesday…

 

Soggy Bloggy

Lots of little things I won’t remember all of.

Today I drove — not just because it’s raining but to remind me to call Mr. B’s to set up repairs… and because I was *wishing* that … the stupid stickers which are over due which I bought yesterday were here at work.  Matter can’t be created or destroyed so they have to be somewhere.   I need to work on the self-hypnosis.  (I did successfully relax everything, go back in time once to locate my wallet…)

Wore my Groucho helmet home yesterday and WHITE STREET IS BRIGHT STREET.   It’s had a ton of construction that was just finished and … it’s Big City Bright.   None of this “I can see my Garmin right under the street lights.”  It’s just. all. bright.

It’s the end of the day now (nonstop, requiring superpowers often).   But I do remember — the traffic light on Fourth is either sensing bicycles or it’s on an automatic timer.   It’s not a “dead red.”   Crossing Wright is … a little weird because it’s so wide but I got a wave from bus driver (well, probably for the trash can lid on my helmet more than my strategic lane position ;)).

I was also asked by trick or treat parent  dressed as prisoner  if I was selling something.  I said no, I was just being Oscar the Grouch… I don’t know, maybe it was the loaded cargo bike?