Ride In 6/16

While walking the dog this morning, I finished up the Slate Culture Gabfest weekly podcast, which covered "urban cyclists" as its third topic of conversation. I encourage everyone to listen, not because I agree with much they said, but just as a reminder of how far we have to go to explain to reasonable people who say they are "pro-bicyclist" about the kinds of concerns bicyclists actually have. I encourage you not to listen to Slate's Hang Up and Listen sports-themed podcast because they chastise writers for being navel-gazing and self-indulgent and that's sort of my schtick and I'd prefer that you not catch on.
I expected it to be cooler on account of the recently fallen rain and I wore my bright jacket on account of the grey haziness, but I probably shouldn't have on account of the muggy heat. As Benjamin Franklin once never said, "Those who would trade visibility for comfort deserve neither." He also never said "A pennyfarthing saved is a pennyfarthing earned" and "Early to bed, early to rise, makes a bike commuter a boring, self-righteous prick."
If you're in a bike lane and turning right into another bike lane, to what degree must should you stop at a red light? According to the law, vehicles are allowed to turn on red after coming to a full stop and making sure the intersection is clear of traffic and pedestrians, but if you're only going from one bike lane to another, are you even really entering the intersection? Pedestrians don't have to come to a complete stop at the corner in order to turn right to walk down the sidewalk. Should bike lanes be treated more like the sidewalk (a place restricted to non-motorized traffic, where users, due to their relatively low speeds, can negotiate amongst themselves the sequencing of their own movements)? This is hardly the most pressing legal concern for cyclists.
Clarendon was a sea of khaki. Nothing unusual in that. It might be the most khaki place in the metro region.
If a big truck is blocking the bike lane in the course of making a delivery, it's blocking the bike lane. Them's the breaks and there's no use getting upset about it. Though I have much more understanding for big 18 wheelers blocking the lane due to girth than for delivery vans double parking.
Godspeed, double hiking pole user on the Key Bridge. The slopes of Georgetown are indeed treacherous.
There should be an outdoor cafe on the bridgehead of the defunct Aqueduct Bridge. Here's a picture:

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It's towpath accessible and would get a good amount of foot traffic in the summer. But it's almost certainly NPS-owned and thus inaccessible for enterprising entrepreneurs. If I owned the concession, I'd sell langos and draft beer.
Have you ever stopped at intersection that doesn't even have a stop sign because there's a cop car sitting right there and you have a guilty conscience and are paranoid about getting a ticket because you read too many bicycle crackdown stories on the interwebs? I'm just glad no one was tailgating me. 
The intersection of 37th and Whitehaven would be a great place for a 'take turns' sign. There should really be more innovation is urban traffic management. It's far too conservative.
I like ending my trip on a longish climb. It makes the commute feel way more like an stage win than just getting to work. I heard that one of the hidden features of the Commuter Relief Act is the mandatory installation of podiums next to all bike racks. But then we'd get all the commuter doping scandals and two year bans and whatnot.

1 comment:

  1. Yes! My friends and I talk about how there should be a cafe on that bridgehead all the time! We've thought about it being NPS land but have always been too lazy to look it up. Maybe NPS could run a cafe though, like on the Mall?