Friday, March 28, 2008

Stuff 'n' Things - March 28th, 2008

Go By Bike
Looks like the Go By Bike Challenge winners won't be announced yet due to "overwhelmingly positive response." In my opinion, this is great news. The fact that between the three cities involved, possibly hundreds or maybe thousands of people have applied can mean only one thing: hundreds or thousands of people have given bicycle commuting some serious thought due to this challenge, even if it's for such self-serving reasons as publicity or getting hundreds of dollars worth of bike stuff for free.

Let's face it, though: some of my reasons for bike commuting are just as self-serving. I'm pretty sure some of your reasons are, too. The difference is that most of us still had to buy our own bikes and gear.

Almost 80% humidity but temperatures near freezing set the scene for the morning commute. At least it's not raining. It'll be in the 50's for the ride home. Last night as I exited the parking garage, I was thinking to myself that it feels an awful lot like late October. My mind has some pretty strange memory triggers, and for some reason, the light and the weather right now is transporting me back to fall and bringing back memories of dressing for 40 degrees in the morning and 60-70 degrees in the evening. Ah, yes. The seasons are changing. I just wish we could fast forward to May and stay there for a very, very long time. 70's in the morning, 80's in the evening. Bliss defined -- or maybe it's more like bliss with the occasional tornado or hail storm.

The Goat's temporary nuance has been lost pretty quickly. Knobby wings. What was I thinking? I really miss The Twelve, but I'd even settle for Hybridzilla right now. Unfortunately, I cannibalized my beloved hybrid when I tacoed The Goat's front wheel. I think JR might have a decent double-walled XC wheelset to sell me for a reasonable price. Then, I can put Hybridzilla back together properly with slick tires and have some bulletproof wheels on The Goat that might endure my hare-brained urban frolics and ham-fisted singletrack exploits. All of this is to say that my entire stable of bikes (not counting my wife's) is in some state of disrepair. There's light at the end of the tunnel, though.

The Commute
Not Vapid: Best described as pleasant, perhaps even tranquil with a little bit of bike hypnosis induced by the harsh pale amber output of sodium halogen street lights over the Quivira viaduct as they held my tread pattern almost perfectly still for the spinfest death slog at about 8 miles per hour. There was hardly any traffic. The bus driver had the heater cranked up to 11, as I swear it must have been nearly 90°F in that wretched cabin. Arriving downtown, I unzipped my shell to soak up the near-freezing breeze on the way to coffee. JR and I talked bike and car shop. Lorin and I partook in a battle of wits, debating the (lack of) merit of so-called "Motown" music, which relentlessly dominated the sound system while I made an attempt to enjoy my mocha. Detroit got a LOT of things right in the 70's. Music was not one of those things.

Random Tunage:
Plumb - Stranded
Paul Van Dyk - Out There And Back

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