Category Archives: Uncategorized

The age of cluelessness

Yesterday and Sunday I had the chance to ride out, at night, South of WIndsor, in fog and mist dense enough so that during the day, my solar powered lantern isn’t charging.   It is most awesome ;)

BOth rides were to go out and Christmas Carol, which is also awesome :)

Monday night I was heading out to Parkview Apartments to sing with Choral Union for the folks there.   I went online to look up the address, and here’s where cluelessness begins.

THe “driving directions” to the place went to a different address than the place actually is; several miles away.

So!  I click “contact and fill out the little form, which requires me to say when I want to move in.

I comment about the above and submit.

Today I get a really nice, friendly email… inviting me to visit and get ready to move in.

I send back an email saying no, I don’t want to move in; just wanted to let ’em know about the web page.

I get a phone call, apologizing for the misundersatnding on voicemail because she didn’t know I wanted to talk on the phone but she was all kinds of eager to tell me about living there.

I sent another email practicing diplomacy saying I didn’t know how to say more clearly that I didn’t want to live there but that there was a problem with the web page (and that since they obviously weren’t going to understand me, I *really* didn’t want to live there).

I got a call within a minute asking how I coudl be helped to find what I was looking for.

I explained very slowly that I wasn’t looking for anything …. just thought they might want to know…

Oh, they don’t have anythign to do with the web page, that was corporate.. I suggested she talk to corporate…

Unseasonably warm

Oh, My!!!!   I don’t think I’ve heard that phrase since… forever! I was trying to remember whether by thuis time last year things had gone into the snow toilet … but whether or not it was actually thoroughly cold and nasty, I know it wasn’t “unseasonably warm.”

Even on the windiest of the days, too, the winds will be gusting to … 16.   Dudes!

Might just head out SUnday for at least 25 miles — I won’t need that for the ‘goal’ of 5200 (100 miles/week_) for the year, but my motivation will be that it will make it easier to start the new year with a bang.

Hmmm…. another thought:   to actively combat the “geez, it’s hard to get up because it’s dark outside!”   – it *is* light by the time I leave – and plan pre-dawn departures for work and an extra few miles.

Security

I bugged out in a reasonably timely manner from work so that I could get to the terminal in time to re-up my bus pass, even though the forecast had changed from possible freezing rain tonight to a “low” of 33 (in quotes because it’s 32 right now) and a warning for dense fog, instead. It’s not foggy (in fact, we’ve had fog I wouldn’t have ridden in, when we had a swath of very cold snow, and a warm front moved in — for three feet off the ground things were condensing madly and visibility was nonexistent, which makes me kinda wish it would happen that way for a week or so just for the science fiction experience, but I digress…).

I pondered the statistical significance of the number of people who work for CUMTD whom I’ve tutored since the fellow behind the counter was one of ’em ;) I got the same picture — dont’ have that many new grey hairs — and went out and turned on the lights and rolled out.

Two men were crossing the street and I heard one of them say “…security.” The response was something about no, it wasn’t… oh. THey were talking about me, in that special tone … geez, between Ferguson and New York, I probably should have said “chill, I do not represent murderers!” but I said “No, just a bright jacket!” and they complimented my lights and bicycles, still in the tone of voice one uses to a tyrannical despot when hoping to stay on the good side. Then I realized that it was more likely the blue lights on the wheel … but that the rainbow nutcase helmet and the purple and orange lights spoke to my true Advent nature.

People get ready, there’s a train a-comin…

Go Pro Sidewalk Moments

Well, they would have been, had I had a body camera attached.

There are two stretches of my commute where I’m usually on a sidewalk/Multi-use path.   Coming in, I grab the puny sidewalk for the last quarter mile, when I am heading West on Bradley, which has one of the highest traffic counts in the county and when I’m coming in, they’re people in a hurry to get to class.

On my route either way, I cut through campus and yes, a student was meandering in the middle of the wide path… I gave my little ‘toot’ with the air horn from 15 feet back… oblivious.   I hollered as I approached and the face-to-screen ears-to-buds student shuffled out of the way, apologizing; I suggested he pay some attention to the world (knowing he wasn’t going to hear that anyway).

That made me reflect on the morning commute, where I also approached a pedestrian (rare) and tooted my horn.   This student immediately stepped slowly, but clearly, off the sidewalk into the grass, bringing his hands up just far enough … to make me think, “hands up, don’t shoot.”

Guess I don’t need to inform you as to the racial identity of either person, do I? I’m not going to assume that this student has learned “always assume you need to prove you’re unarmed, no sudden moves, even on a sidewalk with a bicycle approaching…”   but… I can’t assume it’s not true, either.

Freezing rain in the forecast tomorrow night, so I’ll be getting that CUMTD yearly pass…

Baby, it’s cold out side

Okay, not really — it’s in the 20’s.  That’s lots of degrees!   Still, getting to Parkland from the airport yesterday a.m. w/ at least 15 mph headwinds… I really didn’t want to do the Duncan over-the-interstate overpass on a windy day when nobody’s looking for bicycles, especially on the tiny little invisible-feeling Trek (that woudl fit nicely in the back of the rental that I was dropping off, which I had to get from the airport b/c when I called to see if I could get my reserved car a day early, I found out I didn’t actually have a reservation so THANK YOU weather, my dear friend, for inspiring DIRE forecasts that made me call, since otherwise I would have wandered in Wednesday a.m. *thinking* I had a car reserved instead of snagging one and taking off extra early and going through nice, 34-degree wet snowflakes and arriving earlier than I ever have).

Night time I rode on home still feeling invisible but those Christmas lights on the back of the backpack do their job.   People saw me  ;)   I managed 25 *brisk* miles (either charging into headwind or hustling to get to Chorus on time) *and* bonus stretching when I had to wait about ten minutes for a train.

Still, really nice to be back on Sir Xtra today.   Haven’t figured out what’s up with the light — it seems to spontaneously come on after about 3  miles of riding.   It definitely has a broken-off connecting pin but it might be contacting anyway… and perhaps it’s just so cold that it takes that long to charge things up.  I’ll sneak by MakerSpace and see if they have any advice…

Tonight’s goal:   get the “trainer room” cleared out.   Hey, now that I have *two* aluminum Treks I can just park one on the trainer.   I might just could also use our fitness center indoor walking/jogging track …

And I’m thinking instead of putting a tree on the bike… I had thought of making it a sleigh but I think I shall try to make it a camel or a donkey…

Not. What. I. Had. In. Mind.

Seems one of my virtual biking compadres was creamed and killed by a FedEx Semi yesterday.   Won’t see posts by Kirke Johnson again. Not the reason I wanted to be posting more often.

CUMTD says today was a record cold of 8 but I wasn’t cold riding in — but there was a nice tailwind (and it was prob’ly 14 where I was).   The snow pants are nice, but I wish somebody would actually design snow pants for a bicycle — skinny at the ankles, please…

Took me halfway in to reconstruct yesterday’s “I know I had a good idea!! What was it ?!?!?”  — a place to meet, eat, and do the technology thing.   Pizza M tries but it’s too noisy in the back.   Parkland COllege should do it out of their hospitality department.

I did ride faster going in — on purpose, not just because of the tailwind. I’m really glad I ignored the inner suggestion that really, it’s uncomfortable that cold.  (I’m also somewhat sure that Tuesday, with the 25 mph winds and blowing snow and 9 degrees, that it *would* have been uncomfortable — but not entirely…)

Spring is just around the corner though ;)

(yes, I’m going to post more )

Okay, it’s time to make this regular like.

Had that CCB meeting and we do have a board and I wasn’t drafted. Our current pres found folks to step up and be new blood and the one who was there seems like he’ll be awesome and the one who wasn’t, we’ll meet. I rather trust my initial feeling of extreme gratitude that he went out and found folks to build our group instead of just keeping things in the little group we are (other interpretations occurred to me hours after the fact ;)). I may assign myself an unofficial job of “hurrying meetings along, ” since that seems to be an issue… I’m as distractible as anybody — but also don’t like sitting in one place for long :)
There’s a chatrt that compares our community to “Platinum,” and there are places where we are ‘way below … will find and blog about it soon.