Saturday, January 10, 2015

Concrete Chunks Continue to Fall from 66 Bridge @VaDOTNOVA @ARLnowDOTcom @ArlingtonDES

Windy Run first reported problems with the I-66 Overpass of Lee Hwy in Lyon Village, Arlington, back in 2013.  At that time there was concrete rubble littering the sidewalk under the bridge.

Once again, perhaps as a result of the recent storm, there are football size chucks of concrete on the sidewalk that have fallen from the bridge.  Seems dangerous.  The problem has been reported on the vadot page.

Monday, January 5, 2015

The Parable of the Good Cyclists

By Johannes de Silentio

A man was cycling down a road in Baltimore.  A Bishop reportedly* happened to going down the same road, when she came upon the man, and hit him, robbing him of his life, leaving him to die.  And when she saw, she passed by on to the other side of town. She left the man dieing on the road. She returned later.

The man died alone.  He did not die with his wife.  He did not die with his children.  He did not die with his friends.  He did not die while being comforted by the words of mercy from a member of the clergy. He died with his bicycle on a street.  

But then a cyclist came, and took pity on him and his family.  And another cyclist came.  And another cyclist came.  And thousands of cyclists got on their bicycles and came, and took pity on him and his family.  Thousands of cyclists road in a memorial ride for the man, placing a ghost bike at the spot on the road.
Photo by Greenbelt
And the next day, the cyclists took out two denarii and gave it to the family.  "Look after his children and their education," they said.  They set up an educational trust fund with the goal of raising $10,000.  Within days the educational trust had more than $50,000.

Which of these do you think was a neighbor to the man who died in the street?

The expert in the law replied, "The ones who had mercy on him and his family"

Jesus told him, "Go and do likewise"

Luke 10:25-37

 * Above facts are taken from reports in the media.  Story was modified to fit the Parable of the Good Samaritan.  Please read Bikemore Statement on the Death of Thomas Palermo.

Monday, November 24, 2014

December 6th WABA Cider Ride

Right in time fir figuring out what cold weather gear you need to ask from Santa comes the WABA Cider Ride.  And at the request of the Elves, this ride is accessible using WMATA to the Shaddy Grove Metro!  The Abominable Snow Cyclist sez

Riders can choose between the Honeycrisp route or the McIntosh route. The longer Honeycrisp route will take riders out toward Poolesville where you can enjoy hot cider and snacks at the cider pit stop at Kingsbury’s Orchard in Dickerson, MD before looping back to where you started. The shorter McIntosh route will stay close to Rockville taking riders mostly on trails and side paths throughout Montgomery Country. McIntosh riders will enjoy hot cider and snacks upon return to Stepanek park. Each year the Cider Ride will feature a new scenic tour of the region’s back roads, country roads, agricultural lands and farm sites that area accessible by bike.

The Cider Ride is currently open to WABA Members only for registration, as getting exclusive or early access to WABA rides is a benefit of your WABA membership. If space permits and the ride does not sell out, we may open registration to non-members.

Ride Overview:

DATE: Saturday, December 6th, 2014 CHECK IN: Ride starts from Mattie Stepanek Park in Rockville (1800 Piccard Drive, Rockville, MD) SCHEDULE: 8:00-9:00am: Check in open for Honeycrisp riders (longer route) 9:00am: Honeycrisp riders depart 9:30-10:00am: Check in open for McIntosh riders (shorter route) 10:00am: McIntosh riders depart 10:30am-2:30pm: Cider Stop with hot cider and snacks at Kingsbury’s Orchard (in Dickerson, MD) open for Honeycrisp riders 12:00-3:30pm: Honeycrisp and McIntosh riders finish ride and return to Mattie Stepanek Park for the cider celebration with hot cider and donuts

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Kidically Cranksgiving! To Support AFAC; Thanksgiving Day, Nov 27 10am meet Westover Park

Kidical Mass Arlington announces their next event:
Work up an appetite before your big meal! Do you want to get out and enjoy the crisp fresh air on a group ride before the big Thanksgiving feast, have a chance to get out of the house with the kids and let them burn off some energy, or just get out on your bike to enjoy some of our local trails on a beautiful Fall holiday?  Join us for a Thanksgiving Day morning ride, the Cranksgiving ride.  

When:  Thursday, November 27, Thanksgiving Day, 10 am  (roll out 10:15am - come early to play!)

Meet: Westover Park Playground Pavillion, 1001 N. Kennebec Street, just off of the Custis Trail

Parking: On surrounding neighborhood streets
End: Bluemont Park Playground, 329 N Manchester Street, just off of the Four Mile Run Trail (*those interested can ride back to Westover together)

We start off at Westover Park Playground, one of Arlington's many great neighborhood playgrounds. We'll roll down the Custis Trail under I-66 and over to the Washington and Old Dominion Trail south past Wilson Blvd underpass, heading onto the Four Mile Run Trail shortly after passing the caboose.  We'll ride past the fields at Bluemont park and ride into the woods, where there is the Bluemont Park Playground.  Ride is 1.2 miles one way.  For those interested, we'll let the kids play at the Bluemont Playground for a while and then we can ride back to Westover Park together. All are welcome - with and without kids.

In the spirit of giving thanks, we will also collect canned and boxed food for donation to AFAC.  Donations are optional and voluntary.

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Alan Howze Update ~ Target Zero Safer Streets Initiative #bikedc #arlingtonva

Arlington County Board Candidate Alan Howze sent me the following additional information about his views of cycling in Arlington

In his Press Release, Alan Howze states

HOWZE CALLS FOR ARLINGTON TO ADOPT “TARGET ZERO” SAFER STREETS INITIATIVE-ZERO pedestrian and cyclist injuries from vehicle accidents to make Arlington safer
Contact: Alan Howze – 703-258-2608

Today, Alan Howze, the Democratic Nominee for the Arlington County Board, called for Arlington to adopt a goal of ZERO pedestrian and cyclist injuries and deaths from vehicle accidents. This can be achieved through a comprehensive safe streets approach.

Said Howze, “more and more Arlington residents are choosing to move in our community on foot and on bicycles. We must continue to create safe infrastructure that promotes walking and cycling and protects residents from preventable injury and death. Communities across the Country are setting targets of ZERO pedestrian and cyclist fatalities and injuries caused by vehicle accidents and so should Arlington.”

Howze continued, “from the Intersection of Doom to safe routes to all Arlington schools, we must take action to make our streets safer. I want walking and biking to be a safe, attractive transportation option for all Arlingtonians: young or old, single riders or families, commuters or for recreation. We should enable people to walk and bike when they want – on short trips on safe neighborhood streets to school or the store or to the park, and on longer trips to work or across the County on a connected network of trails.”

Concluded Howze, “Today, I am issuing the challenge for Arlington to become a community with ZERO pedestrian and cyclist traffic injuries. I am laying out specific actions that we can take to make our community safer and healthier through walking and cycling.”

Howze Safer Streets Plan
1)Make Streets Safer for All Users
2)Complete Safe routes to ALL Arlington schools
3)Expand trail and route network
4)Enhance Community Involvement

Detailed Action Plan
1)Make Streets Safer for All Users
a. Identify safety hot-spots in neighborhoods and resolve these within 12 months
I. Accelerate safety improvements at the “Intersection of Doom” in Rosslyn (Lynn and westbound Lee Highway) – see plan here
b. Collect detailed incident information on all bike and pedestrian accidents
c. Expanded sidewalks for pedestrian accessibility
d. Expand broken links program to improve connectivity
e. Implement street designs and configurations that enhance safety
f. Incorporate bike and pedestrian safety in all road and bridge projects
g. Expand the use of low-cost tools such as stop-signs at dangerous intersections
h. Increased traffic enforcement of actions that endanger pedestrians and cyclists
I. Adjust traffic signaling to minimize vehicle and pedestrians interactions in intersections

2)Complete Safe routes to ALL Arlington schools
a. Work with APS to ensure that children, parents, staff and visitors can safely access the school by bus, car, bike, and walking
b. Create Transportation Demand Management plans for each school, including crossing guards and traffic calming
c. Create a coordinated County and APS plan to clear sidewalks and provide safe routes to schools within 24 hours after inclement weather (snow/ice)
d. Design safe bike infrastructure and policies that accommodates all bikes, especially those used to transport children
e. Respond to input from local civic associations in safe street designs – such as the Rock Spring Civic Association request on crossing design and traffic lights

3)Expand trail and route network
a. Enhance maintenance and repaving of trail network
b. Work with the National Park Service to widen the Mt Vernon Trail and separate cyclists and runners and pedestrians
c. Create 20 miles of protected bike lanes by 2020
d. Support continued expansion of Capital Bikeshare
e. Complete Route 50 bike route connectivity
f. Enhance I-395 and North-South trail connectivity
I. Work with Ft Myer on commuter access
II. Support Army Navy Country Club connector
g. Complete bike boulevards along Columbia Pike
h. Create network of bike boulevards and safe bike routes that connect the county
i. Improve Crystal City and Long Bridge Park trail connectivity
j. Work with regional partners to improve connectivity including the Roosevelt Bridge; Chain Bridge; Memorial Bridge; and Mt Vernon Trail
k. Design bike-ped facilities into commercial construction and County buildings
l. Ensure that designs – such as the Pedestrian bridge over Rt 50 at Irving – can accommodate bikes effectively

4)Enhance Community Involvement
a. Improve opportunities for input by residents on street and safety improvements
b. Improve County outreach and response processes on street safety issues
c. Accelerate implementation of neighborhood traffic safety solutions

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Trick or Treat for #Coffeeneuring #4: In Which the SAG Driver Gets Out of Hand

Today marks the festival of the Great Pumpkin, in which the Great Pumpkin spirit rises from the pumpkin patch to gives pumpkin pie to good little cyclists.

Good little cyclists celebrate by gathering on the morning of the Great Pumpkin Ride to sing Pumpkin carols around the Yule pumpkin caboose in Warrenton.  The cyclists then go cycling from pit spot to pit stop, saying "trick or treat!" and finding out what the host has in store for them.  And when they arrived at the first pit stop today, the answer they received was:

Host: Well, there's pumpkin pie and pumpkin bread; pumpkin soup and pumpkin cake; pumpkin pie and spam; pumpkin cake and spam; pumpkin pie, pumpkin soup and spam; spam, pumpkin bread, pumpkin pie, pumpkin cake and spam......

To which some guy working the SAG car started signing: Pie Pie Pie Pie Pie

Host: spam, spam, spam, pumpkin bread and spam; spam spam spam spam candy corn and spam

SAG guy: Pie! Pumpkin Pie!

Host: or Lobstor Thermidor a Crevette with a pumpkin sauce served in a Provencale manner with shallots and aubergines garnished with a truffle pate, brandy and with pumpkin pie and spam.

I: Have you got anything without spam?

Host: Well, there's pumpkin pie, spam, pumpkin bread and spam.  That's not got much spam in it.

I: I dont want any spam!

My buddy: Why cant he have pumpkin pie, pumpkin bread, pumpkin beer, and spam?

I: THAT's got spam in it!

Buddy: Hasnt got as much spam in it as pumpkin pie, pumpkin bread, spam, pumpkin soup, and spam, has it?

SAG Driver: Pie Pie Pie Pie

I:  Look, could you do the pumpkin pie, pumpkin bread, and pumpkin soup without spam then?

Host: Urggh!

I: What do you mean 'Urgghh'!?!  I dont like Spam!

SAG Driver: Lovely Pie! Pumpkin Pie!

Host: Shut Up!

Buddy: Dont worry.  I'll have your spam.  I love it.  I'm having spam spam spam spam spam spam spam baked pumpkin and spam!

SAG driver: Pie Pie Pie Pie

Host: Shut! UP! Baked pumpkin is off.

Buddy:  Well could I have his spam instead of the baked pumpkin?

Host: You mean spam spam spam spam spam......

SAG driver (who by this time who had too much pumpkin beer): Pie Pie Pie Pie Pumpkin Pie.
I gave up.  I biked on, despondent.  Upon Rootchoppers recommendation, after completing the Great Pumpkin Ride (well not really completed - more like cheatedly cutting lots of corners and turned a 47 mile ride into a 32 mile ride so technically I wasnt even on the Great Pumpkin ride...), I went to the Great Harvest Bread Company and had a fantastic sandwich, black coffee, and BLUEBERRY COBBLER!  

Never saw Rootchopper.  I think the SAG driver must have gotten him and taken him to the viking boat.  

Coffeeneuring Vitals:
  • Where I went for coffee: Great Harvest Bread Company
  • Date: Today
  • What I drankCoffee: Black.
  • Details About Coffee Ride: Above, some of its true 
  • Bike Friendliness: The Great Pumpkin would approve
  • Mileage: 32 miles on the Great Pumpkin Ride except about half were not on the Great Pumpkin Ride cause I cheated.  More miles getting coffee and goofing around.

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Coffeeneuring #3: Look Mom: No Brains! #coffeeneuring

This weekend I had to rely on one of my lifelines.  No coffee truck was available at DC||CX today so I had to rely on my "Coffee Without Walls" option.

First, the coffee.  The coffee was its finest.  You know that you are drinking the best when you are drinking Jo out of a cup that says Black and Decker.  I believe the brand was Whatever Was Cheapest at the Grocery Store.  It was barely tolerable and managed to keep me awake for a few hours.  The picture was taken during the ELITE race, featuring the #1, #2, and #3 racers.  I believe #2 won.

As for the ride,  after the day had ended, most of the spandex-kings had left and the course officials were drinking beer, I once again stole The Kid's bike to try my hand.  I must say... I dont think I look like a cyclocrosser.  I managed to do the course 1.5 times (more than 2 miles but who knows how much) without crashing so I consider that an outstanding achievement.  Dont tell The Kid but tomorrow I have entered The Geezer's race.  I do believe I have lost my brain.