Friday, October 31, 2008

New Doctor

Congrats to fellow blogger and friend Phil, the world's newest PhD in Musicology!

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Losing Patience

Today, I officially yelled at a fellow cyclist whose zest for dangerous riding pushed me over the edge.

See, there are many more cyclists out there, the majority of whom never think about safety issues on a bike. They wear headphones and listen to their iPods at top volume completely erasing the only method of signaling from behind that other cyclists have. When a passing cyclist calls out "on your left!" they don't hear, and even sometimes drift leftwards putting the passing cyclist at risk. I don't like being pushed into traffic.

Today, after dealing with many headphone wearing cyclists, I was almost taken out by a cyclist riding ::gasp:: on the wrong side of the road. I was attempting to make a left turn into a bicycle parking lot and was looking for oncoming traffic. This fellow came up from behind and almost hit me. I yelled, "watch out!" Really, though, I shouldn't have to yell. After he realized what had almost happened, I said something along the lines of "traffic laws apply to you too!" Dear. God.

And now, I end with a brief list of other offending actions only committed by irreverent cyclists in town:

• Passing on the right, especially when a cyclist is trying to make a right turn. Disaster waiting to happen!
• Switching rapidly between riding on the sidewalk and the right side of the road causing chaos among cyclists, pedestrians, and cars. Ack!
• Refusing to yield to anyone or anything.
• Riding two or ::gasp!:: three abreast on a busy street at a low speed, thereby eliminating the possibility of safe passing.
• Not looking before moving into traffic thereby almost causing a vehicle to hit a car/ cyclist.

And, my personal favorite:

• Completely running all red lights thereby making all cars hate cyclists. Boo!!

That's all. Someone needs to more actively promote basic courtesy among commuting cyclists. For the love of god, people.

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Overdoing It

For the past two weeks, I've been using my bike as my only mode of transportation around town. It's been great. Riding from UCLA to the Grove for Rosh Hashannah? Cool! Travelling from Marina Del Rey to UCLA to teach? No problem. Stopping by the pet store to get cat-food? Not even a question.
But then, something weird happened. I continued to do my long training rides on the weekends AND I woke up at an absurdly early hour on Wednesday to ride 20 miles with the UCLA cycling team (up Mandeville Canyon). Around yesterday afternoon, my left achilles tendon started to scream at me. Quite loudly. And then I noticed that my old injury in my right leg was making some noise as well. So, even though I had been training intensely for over 2 months to do the Angeles Crest Century ride, my body was starting to let me know that I have been overdoing it by just a tad.
I skipped the century in favor of my physical health (and to preserve my ability to ride in the future). It's a good thing that my scooter is finally fixed because my legs need a serious rest.
Part of me wonders why I have been riding with such manic intensity. I have it boiled down to three reasons:
• I cut off my hair a week ago and I now want to take advantage of the increased ease of wearing a helmet. It literally takes me 2 minutes to remove all traces of helmet head. Awesome!

• Getting hit by a car sucks. In my need to not let the accident ruin my love for my bicycle, I've let my riding get a little too intense.

• I recently let go of a very major commitment in my life, and instead of dealing with the reasons for leaving this organization, I want to distract myself from the inevitable.

Whatever it is, I think I need to tone things down just a tad. Or maybe I ought to stick to slower riding speeds for my training rides. Or something. The good news is that I don't need to be riding to wear my cute Surly cycling cap and look at the new bike models for next year. Nothing heals sore tendons like retail therapy.