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How was the commute today?

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How was the commute today?

Old 08-22-02, 07:15 AM
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A very eventful commute this morning!

Two miles from home, I got a flat tire. Since I've only been riding for a few months, this was my first flat, so it took me a little while to figure out how to patch it. I must have been successful, because I made it to work without losing any pressure. I was delighted at the friendliness of a passing biker who asked if I needed help. I said no, but it's good to see there are courteous, helpful people out there!

Unfortunately, I met the other side of the spectrum about half a mile from work. I was coasting down a hill, and someone on a side street pulled out in front of me. I hit the brakes, waved my hands, and yelled so he would see me. It worked, and we both made it by each other without going off the road. But it wasn't over. He then pulled up beside me, rolled down his window, and started yelling at me! He looked really upset, but I couldn't understand what he was saying. Then he sped off.

I'm not sure what I could have done to make him angry, other than just being on the road... Oh well, at least no one got hurt

Tim
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Old 08-22-02, 07:58 AM
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Well tnorman, I think it's the car and not you or what you did, People in cars seem to get like that, the car must have some adverse effect on personality. Or maybe the driver was just so jealous because he was driving and you were riding your bike. Anyway it doesn't matter, keep riding your bike, you will probably out live him anyway, look at the whole thing as another example of how uncivilized some civilized people can be.
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Old 08-22-02, 08:07 AM
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I commute everyday to work depending on the weather conditions. This week has been great, as I have been able to ride to work everyday so far. I commute 10 miles a day, round trip. Its all pretty much downhill on the way to work and uphill on the way home. Its an average of 3% grade on the way home, with an initial 10% after a mile or so, then back to the 3% or so, until the last stretch which goes to 4-5% grade. Fortunetly, the hills are not that long on the steeper grades. I love it though.

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Old 08-22-02, 08:33 AM
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Originally posted by tnorman


I'm not sure what I could have done to make him angry, other than just being on the road...
That's all it was. We're Americans. Blaming other people for our own inadequacies is part of our cultural heritage.

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Old 08-22-02, 09:49 AM
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Hey, the best thing to do with irrate motorists, is just shake off whatever they throw at you verbally or give you with sign language. I get it quite frequently, and it just doesn't bother me anymore. Motorists these days are always so much in a hurry. Getting behind a bicyclist or having to wait for a bicyclist to pass before they can go, just irritates them to no end. One day I would like to see that people here in the USA eventually respect people on bicycles, the same as the people in Europe respect bicyclists over there. I am not holding my breath though.
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Old 08-22-02, 05:42 PM
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My ride in was nice, but my ride home was very special,
they filled the pavement cracks at the expansion joint of the overpass at I95! Now I don't
have to do the sharp zig-zag dance anymore.
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Old 08-22-02, 05:58 PM
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Originally posted by Jean Beetham Smith
My ride in was nice, but my ride home was very special,
they filled the pavement cracks at the expansion joint of the overpass at I95! Now I don't
have to do the sharp zig-zag dance anymore.
If you think about how big a crack in the pavement it would take to make a motorist do a zig-zag, it sorta puts a different face on it! Of course, something like that would swallow a bicycle.
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Old 08-22-02, 06:01 PM
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If the city of San Jose did something like this, they'd replace the joint, which would mess up my bike, with a huge bump, which would mess up my bike.

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Old 08-22-02, 09:31 PM
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The wind has turned around! I had an actual tailwind going into town, and it was a good one. I think I set a new high for speed coming down Cemetery Hill (though it's hard to prove without a bike computer.) It was overcast and looked like rain, though none actually fell.

On the way home, in a sort of spirit of vengeance, I set my headlight so it would shine right into the eyes of oncoming motorists. Don't know if it made me more noticeable, but most people dimmed their brights for me. (Not all, though.)
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Old 08-23-02, 04:28 AM
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Yesterday, a typical cruise into work. However, when logging my computer info I found I had reached the highest avg MPH for that bike so far this year. I was hardly pushing and was orbiting at lights. I must be getting stronger!
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Old 08-23-02, 06:55 AM
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My commute this morning went well enough. However, just before I left I realized that my bike bag was unzipped and my Alien tool (my swiss-army bike tool) had fallen out at some point yesterday. I spent the commute intently watching the other side of the road, hoping that magically I would see the tool.

Now that I am at work (without finding the tool, as expected), I'm absolutely exhausted. I think my ride yesterday was too hard on me. I went over 40 miles, a personal best for me. Apparently I shouldn't have gone quite that far. I'm so glad it is Friday!

Teresa
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Old 08-23-02, 07:04 AM
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To follow up on my whining in the previous post.... I just realized that I have commuted FIVE days this week. I've never done that before. And due to other circumstances, I have also not used my car at all since Sunday. Which is good because it's transmission is acting up.

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Old 08-23-02, 07:25 AM
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Congratulations on the 40-miler!
My ride today featured my first flat in which I had to deal with presta valves. It was also the first time I had used my frame pump. Let's just say things didn't go very smoothly. 50 minutes later I was back on the road, although soaked with sweat. Good thing I had a cologne tester at the office - I'm sure I smell like a sasquatch rolling in a pig sty. Geez, I hope I don't get a flat on the way back...
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Old 08-23-02, 07:40 AM
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Sorry about your Alien, Teresa. I lost a pair of prescription eyeglassas that way once, but I sure learned my lesson about doublechecking the zippers!

But congrats on becoming so hardcore. I remember the summer when I realized it had been three months since I'd gotten to work other than by cycling... you don't feel different because the change has already happened, but you understand you are a different person now and, dare I say, better in every way.

I feel guilty about the car that sits unused in front of my house. But not as guilty as if I were driving it.

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Old 08-23-02, 07:57 AM
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B-n-D, adios the frame pump and get a couple CO2 cartidges. MUCH better. Carry a spare tube that's always at the ready. Just switch the tube, crank the CO2 cartridge, and in 5 mins you're off.

Teresa, way to go. Be sure to rest up, though.
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Old 08-23-02, 09:29 AM
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I think I ran into more stupid drivers and drivers that just didn't use signals yesterday than I ever have. The ride home was a bit hot too as I had to deal with sweaty eyes all the way home. Anyone know anything that stops you from getting sweat in your eyes if you wear glasses? Anyway, the heat (104 degrees) really wiped me out for the rest of the evening. As a result I bike/Bussed today. The mornings are starting to get cool though, the rides are getting much better except for one section that gets narrow, I almost had a city truck rake me up with his wider trailer. Luckily the little voice of reason said "Hmmmm, I don't think he has seen you when I passed him". So when he passed me I had stopped and pulled my bike on the curb (and he just missed me as it was). Other than that I had a close call with a driver failing to signal and turning accross the bike lane. Oh well, guess I will take it a little slower when passing traffic that is backed up. On the bright side I only used the car once this week!
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Old 08-23-02, 09:43 AM
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You could use a sweatband like tennis players wear.

My commute has been very short this week because I've been having chest pains. I always take the train most of the way in the mornings but usually ride the whole 8 miles back home in the afternoon. Since I've been worried about my health I've been taking the train both ways. Yesterday I got a clean bill of health from the doctor (still waiting on blood work but everything else looks great) so I think it's just a bad case of heartburn. Today I'll be back on the horse and I've even got a new route planned for my ride home. I'm getting excited about it already.

Update: The ride home was great except for a couple of incidents. First, I was on a 4 lane street, in the right lane, within 2 feet of the curb. A couple of cars passed me by straddling the right and left lanes. They wanted to get back to the right lane because an 18 wheeler was up ahead in the left lane. Then a bus decides it wants to share the right lane with me. Scared the crap out of me because he came within 6 inches of my handlebars. He didn't break into the left lane at all and there were no cars beside him. I got as close the curb as possible but it was still too close for comfort. From now on, I will take the exact center of a lane unless I'm on a two lane road with wide enough lanes for sharing. The other incident was me riding down a residential street and a suburban came from the opposite direction. He got over a little because of parked cars on his side but then he just kept coming straight at me. I had to get down into the gutter to miss him. He was making a big swing to fit the behemoth into his tiny driveway. Either he didn't see me or didn't care. I'm starting to really connect with Chris L.

Last edited by JDP; 08-23-02 at 03:56 PM.
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Old 08-25-02, 12:00 AM
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Originally posted by Bikes-N-Drums
....My ride today featured my first flat in which I had to deal with presta valves. It was also the first time I had used my frame pump. ....

I have invested in a Topeak Road Morph (the one without gauge), and I think it is the best investment I made so far. Not only the pump works well, but it attaches to the tire via a flexible hose.

In other words, it pumps almost as easily as a floor pump (though a bit longer), and there is no chance of breaking the valve stem.

Regards,
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Old 08-25-02, 04:56 AM
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Thanks. I have that same pump. It took quite some time to actually get it to inject air into the tube - like I said: new to presta valves. Also, after finally getting to about 100 psi or so, the pump was scorching hot. Bahh, I was cursed that day. In addition to the flat, I also broke TWO pairs of cycling sunglasses, scratched up my computer and banged up my fenders! I'll get my mojo workin' again next week. I hope.
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Old 08-25-02, 07:23 AM
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Re: sweatbands

I swear by the Headsweats, Coolmax version. I used to use terry sweatbands like tennis players wear, but I'd end up using two a day, because the morning one was still soaked when it was time to go home.

The Headsweats dries in a couple of hours, and if you wear your hair short (or you're balding, or both, like me) having the top of your head covered, even in the hottest weather, helps. They also fit better under a helmet than terry headbands do.

And it makes you look like a pirate. Aarghh!

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Old 08-25-02, 06:02 PM
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I didn't think I'd be able to commute today. They were predicting heavy fog, and that scared me more than any thunderstorm warning would. Once again, the weather dudes were wrong, though, and I had a beautifully clear morning to bike in! (Though my glasses tended to fog up.) There wasn't a breath of wind, and the bike seemed to sail along with barely any effort on my part. It was a wonderful ride in!

The ride home wasn't so good. What with the lovely weather and having the afternoon free, I decided to cruise some of the back roads I hadn't been on. Not having my Camelbak with me, I pre-hydrated a bit too generously...soon I turned toward the small town of Nichols in search of the public bathroom in their local park. It was LOCKED* so I pushed on , and managed to find a secluded place to sneak into the woods a few miles down the road.

It was all good for a while again, then, but about 4 or 5 miles from home I started getting stomach cramps.

So, it was a mixed bag today...still a good ride, though.

* Coincidentally, there's a new subject on trying to find a bathroom in the Women's Cycling forum today.....
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Old 08-26-02, 12:39 AM
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It sucked. I've never had a bus driver do what this idiot did tongiht. He honked, road my a55, like he was drafting me. I finally got off the bike and tried to get on the bus and give this nut a case of perverbial blue streak reserved for rare cases, and this was one.

And then there was seeing a kid almost buy it riding down the center of a busy street, traffic all around him and he's riding right into oncoming traffic.

It's almost enough for me to consider riding the bus.
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Old 08-26-02, 05:32 AM
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Nice clear, still morning, a little nip in the air but still wearing only a jersey. Traffic was a little on the heavy side and I noticed that most of the diesel trucks now route the exhaust to the right of the vehicle, this means it hits us at about the waist, it's almost as bad as a car full of smokers with the window down. My ride was uneventfull and nice, Monday is my heavy load day, this morning my bike weighed in at 76 pounds when I left. I took my time and kept my average speed to about 16 mph, just below my sweat window, It took me 1 hour, 5 minutes to cover my 18.5 miles. It's supposed to be a nice afternoon, I'm looking forwad to getting out of work and maybe taking the long way home. I have to agree with Naisme, the bus drivers I generally encounter are by far the worst and most dangerous drivers on the road, I think they do it intentionally. Have a great day.
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Old 08-26-02, 06:10 AM
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Super ride this morning! It was a bit chilly, but I still wore my shorts and tee-shirt and warmed up in a few minutes. Traffic seemed a little heavy, even though I left a little early, trying to avoid it. No problems with motorists today. In fact, they were actually pleasant! One motorist waved at me to let me know he wasn't going to pull out in front, and another opened her window and smiled at me for the same reason.

I set a personal record for my commute speed, too! 16.68mph, which is fast for me, still 20 lbs. overweight and on my little hybrid.

Tim
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Old 08-26-02, 07:42 AM
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The commute today is going to suck!! How do I know in advance? I forgot to reset my alarm clock and now I have to drive

PS we need one of these with a car instead of a computer
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