Friday

Hard Rain Gonna Fall

The Boy and I had our first ride of the season that included a good solid rain. The rain gear -the perchase of which, only days earlier, had required bribing and conjoiling The Boy who was sure he didnt want it, and my insisting that he would need it- got it's first test and held up well.

This is the time of year that seperates the fair-weathered cyclists from the hard-core utility cyclists. Just 2 weeks ago, at the start of the quarter, every bike rack at school was literaly covered with bikes. I wish I had gotten photos, because they looked like some kind of modern art instalation, with bikes arranged in every concievable way on, over, and around the bike racks, railings and sign posts around campus. Now there is a mere sprinkling of bikes here and there; the bus shelters are clogged with students, and congestion is worse than ever. Car parking and traffic in this area is rediculous and impossible, add to that all the construction going on down town and most sane people dont even attempt to drive to campus.

It has me thinking that all The City (who claims to be hard at work reducing conjestion and encouraging alternative transpertation) would have to do is eliminate parking in the downtown core and the rest would take care of itself. But we all know that aint gonna happen.

Meanwhile, we have discovered that lots of light layers, panniers or buckets to carry the extra layers, and allowing enough time to stop for hot drinks is all we need to brave the winter weather. It's actually surprising how few layers one needs, as you are generating your own heat while riding. I bring a couple of changes of fresh clothes to hang in my locker at the begining of the week, including a dry rain coat and socks in case the ones I have on gets really wet, and carry a few layers for The Boy on the bike (as I know he will not think of it himself) and that seems to cover it. None of this really reqires more thought or effort than packing the car and stocking his backpack would.

3 comments:

Tuco said...

I was looking through my campus paper a few days ago, and two different student columnists were complaining about how brutal the parking situation is here. I've so far resisted the urge to write in and say "GODDAMNIT!! YOU'RE 18 YEARS OLD!! RIDE YOUR BIKES!"

Maybe sometime later. : )

zilla said...

I hear you loud & clear. I was extremely disappointed upon the completion of my grocery store's renovation, that while they included a complete repaving and expansion of the parking lot, they installed only one bike rack, and that rack can handle only three bikes. I was truly surprise and disappointed as this is the grocery store that is accessible from our county's paved recreation trail! With the trail running through the woods behind the businesses, this is an easily bike-able destination and the presence of more bike parking would encourage more cyclists to opt for the bike instead of the car.

Hey -- you know how those of us who drive certain cars get a tax credit for being green? Where is YOUR tax credit, for being even greener? Huh?

We really need to get the oil tycoons out of the White House, and the sooner the better.

griffin said...

Hey Tuco! I know what you mean, I am -er- OVER 18, and an (lazy)AMERICAN besides, and I somehow manage to tow an 11 year old for 6 miles of my 12 mile round trip: If I can do it, surely and 18 year old could manage it!

Students also bitch about their poverty (I know I do), and yet study after study shows that cycle commuting cost somewhere between 1/3 and 1/2 the cost of going by car. Think of all the parties one could host on that savings!

hi, Zilla
Fasciests out, yes! Did you write or speak with the store managment? Bike racks can be added, even after renovations are completed and if it is true that the customer is always reight . . . .