Still August

Thursday — Move In Day.

5:58 p.m. on the commute home — that’s when I took the pic of the bus behind 3 other vehicles on First Street, all just stopped, its flashers going… completely obliterating my view of traffic coming the other direction.    Not much fun inching out there.   Glad I took the pic b/c when I mentioned it on Facebook MTD wanted to know more.  You’d have to have been there to know how badly things would be blocked becasue I took the picture after I crossed the road.   The bus pulled out as I was snapping … so *perhaps* it was an “oops! have I made a tactical error that will get reported?” situation but at least I could say that, too…  and the picture made it obvious that the bus wasn’t the only vehicle stopped there, but … First Street is a mess when things get busy.

I’ve been back at The Bike Project…. well, they finally actually got new keys to the door.   It was at least 5 years ago that was going to happen — so many people have keys to it and erm, there are personalities.   People with keys might decide to take advantage of having those keys in myriad ways that could be bad.   Hey, they didn’t 🙂 🙂 🙂   Somebody thought they might have, though, adn so … new keys happened and well, if I was gonna get the new keys  (I hadn’t turned mine in)…. I committed to 3 months of the women’s et al night but it’s on Monday nights once a month which is my singing night once school’s rolling. Subbing last Sunday though was like the good old days — well, not really because the marvelous Michael Burns isn’t there — but yea, it was getting people on bicycles, getting people fixing their bicycles… a little taxing b/c only one other person there and we had to leave early — yes, that’s like the not so good old days.   We’ll see 😉

New School Year!

Yea, August drivers…. this morning coming up Country Fair where they’re doing some work under the pavement so one lane’s closed; it’s only two lanes so they bottleneck us.

Ducki 3 in the red SUV  was behind me, slowed down but seemed to think we were in some video game and I’d magically be out of the way.   We pretty much played chicken a little … they let me stay in front after all and then basically stopped at the green light for a while until I was on the sidewalk.  No hostile glares or anything — I suspect “just” autopilot driving.  Think I’ll bump up designing an air horn a little higher on the list…

Last week a typical morning had a really nice driver patiently sitting well behind me ’til I could get across Lincoln at Main (yes, two summers ago that was supposed to be ‘enhanced,’ but we know where budget priorities are)… and then passed me w/ gobs of room…  but then I’m wending through the sidewalks around the construction and yea, Uni High’s students are doing sprints right where I’d get to Wright.   I mentioned this was the bike route to the adult and told the students to run hard.  Kinda wished I’d left early so I could just pause there and chat a while in the middle of things, maybe a brief lecture on automobile dependency (okay, I’m thinking of this now and will give due consideration to creating “talking points” and then forget about them…. )

Fifth Street has car patiently waiting at that stop sign except the driver behind lands on the horn.   Well, the first car went — had plenty time — but yea, I proceeded through as honking man waited…

AND KELLEY FINISHED PARIS BREST PARIS!!!  I think not fast enough (by a pretty small margin, which has got to be moderately annoying)  for official medal — 92 hours … some extra allowed for helping somebody along the way but “not enough” but “it doesn’t matter.”


Where’s the oil :)

Whereas I thought I had a tailwind heading North getting the trike at lunch … the thing seemed self-propelled.   I could have been going 5 mph —  too weird a perspective to have speed sense — but I thought… okay, this thing is not so low it doesn’t catch wind ’cause I’m coasting fast.     However, I was going North and the wind is 14 mph from the west.

Yea, I’m pretty sure that I’ve got a bunch of crud in the chain and/or my tires are disgustingly low on the Tank … this bike shouldn’t be *that* much easier.

Drivers gave me *tons* of room. . . tho’ I did cross Springfield and then cut into the parking lot because there were 8 or 9 cars behind me.   Got back out and a few hundred yards later, bike lane time — and I need to stay further right than on two wheels. My *natural* tendency is to be to the left of the bike lane, so I duck into it when somebody’s behind me… so on this wide body… I need to accommodate, I suspect… because there was a person not passing me when I was in the bikelane.   Now, it could have been a WTF thing… but when I tucked over, they went on by… then I crossed and went on the sidewalk which was its own fun. On 2 wheels I dodge ’round the mudpies left from when it snowed months ago and they cleared things…. and sometimes I’ve plowed through the mud (did I mention the bike needs to be cleaned?)  … on 3 wheels that’s a totally different experience.   The “let’s balance things” motions … don’t matter ’cause the bike has 3 wheels thank you. So I’m a little afraid of riding this thing a lot — I’ll expect two wheels to balance themselves 🙂

Yea, I’m a little nervous about riding home.   I have a feeling that on the right side of the road it’s “oh, that overgrown wheelchair… I’ll move around…” but that it’ll be Making No Sense So Brain Won’t Process (a.k.a. invisible gorilla)  doing, say, a left turn.

We’ll see!

New to me!

First, some observations — day before yesterday, as I’m waiting to turn onto Bradley which is a quarter mile on highest traffice count in the county so I often duck over to sidewalk (eastbound a couple of high visibility low traffic entries and a right turn to easy re-entry to road )… but there was a beagle height but definitely not beagle shaped dog pelting eastbound in the right lane a foot from the curb.

Light changed; I got onto the road and a van was… yes, stopped in the traffic lane 1/8 mile ahead.  I took my lane as the driver  made some fascinating maneuvers (but driving; if the dog had been picked up that was a done deal) and realized yes, cars could tell I was a bicycle from the top of the hill behind me and take evasive action long before they’d see the need for same for the van, which ended up backing into one of those driveways.

I have no idea the status of dog…

This a.m. was rife with people running stop signs and red lights.  YEs, I was 6 minutes late which became 8 at Lincoln — I hope they get onto make that actually crossable.   The pedestrian and cyclist who were more daring than I didn’t make pretty pictures timing their bobs and weaves.

I had considered taking the bus because it stormed just before 7:00 and because then I could pick up the new-to-me Catrike Trail … but tonight’s a club ride, too, and while it’s a slow paced ride, I need to figure out how to drive the thing and how people react to it.   My driving strategies are different for each bike b/c I’m perceived differently.

Pictures will come!   I had decided I couldn’t *stomach* spending what a Catrike costs on principle, and I’d forgotten why I wanted one, but when this one was tagged at $800 but no takers from the community bike sale, I got on it and… this masher enjoys the lean-back-and-mash!  geometry.   Day later I remembered the imagined scenario for why I wanted to have one… we’ll see if I can make that pan out 🙂

Cycling season!

Semi-official 🙂   Season started Saturday with no rides because it was 40 degrees w/ gusts to 40 mph.

Yesterday’s commute was remarkable in that first, where I turn left (with full L turn lane and arrow if I hit things just right), a driver horned me from the straight-going lane.   I noted the tag AF3 9335 … which I would certainly have forgotten, except that at the next intersection a driver just couldn’t be bothered to move into the left lane at all to go around me … not particularly scary but so atypical… and that was an AF3 tag and… a third AF3 driver (all different cars) … I don’t remember what silliness it was but each time it inspired me to recall the first one.

I saw an AF4 this morning… I’m thinking these are recent tags from folks moving here from places were folks drive more aggressively.   (I am really hoping my brother will soon take back my AC9… I want to be free from car ownership.)

This a.m. notable because … I was on time with minutes to spare and no tailwind to help.

Monday a 24 year old man was seriouslyl injuredin hit and run on Highcross (concussion, ribs, long list of body trauma 😦 ) …. and apparently a head-on with cars killed a mom and daughter.   Last week it was Shelly Taylor killed walking across Main Street (in the crosswalk) at Vine… we had talked 3 weeks before about the increase in numbers of crashes, injuries, and fatalities but good grief, did the world have to prove it ?!?!?!??   (and … can we just make it harder to earn and keep the privilege of driving?)


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 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!!!