Monday, November 16, 2009

Washington, DC Got Tweeded But Good

The first semi-annual Washington, DC Tweed Ride was a great success! Eric and the crew from Dandies and Quaintrelles really pulled it off. Thanks to you and all your volunteers, and kudos on the great piece in The Post this morning! Over 200 people pre-registered, so I imagine there were a lot more who showed up. It certainly seemed that way.

The weather was perfect and the enthusiasm and motivation were palpable. Everyone was amazed at how great the event was and how much they were enjoying themselves. The event started with some wrangling to get signed up and have photos taken but before we knew it the ride was on.

The nice part of the route is that it started in a relatively passive neighborhood on the Hill. This meant that those who were timid about riding on the DC streets started off easy before they hit the downtown traffic. Well played indeed.

There was hound's tooth and wool as far as the eye could see, or for several blocks at least.

A brief rally at the Obama's house before pressing onward.

One of the finer moments of the ride came when the main group reached Dupont Circle. As everyone entered the circle all automotive traffic came to a halt, and for two delightful orbits the epicenter of DC traffic congestion belonged to the velopeds. Also, seeing a penny farthing in the circle was quite satisfying.

Eventually we arrived at Marvin where the gin was flowing, the pipes were smoking, and the bike racks were provided by WABA...

...some needing less tweed than others. (I hope that tweed was lined, for her nipple's sake.)

It's interesting that when compared to a more serious cycling movement like a critical mass ride, a tweed ride seems to gather a great deal more people. Looking at yesterdays event I think the tweed ride might be more effective at creating positive awareness of cycling as transportation without the negative press and connotations that the critical mass gets. Thoughts?

It was the perfect way to spend a 70-degree Sunday in November. And since this was advertised as a semi-annual event the big question is when is the next one?

There are a ton of you who have great photos of the event. Please post a link to the photos in the comments section so we can all enjoy them.

Daniel sent me his flicker set this morning.
Here is a link to the pile of photos on Flickr

Also, I found a pump along the route, hit me up if you lost yours on the ride.

Have a smashingly good Monday ole' chaps!


JPK I I I said...

Great day... Nice job on the pics... and a pleasure to meet the Baroness. A few more on my new blog

Freewheel said...

Nice photos... Everyone looks great, but I have to say, the ladies bested the lads.

Cycle Jerk said...

Freewheel, I have to agree. The women look sexy in the tweed, although for the lads, there is a fine line between having the perfect tweed get up and looking like John Waters'gay uncle.

Anonymous said...

Totally agree that an event like Tweed Ride is a better way to get more people out and on their bikes than a critical mass ride. As a casual biker who rides a vintage cruiser, critical mass seems a little more aggressive than I'd be comfortable with. And I think for the people who saw hundreds of happy people on bikes Sunday, it came off as non-threatening and not a protest, but a pleasent reminder that biking is a totally proper way to navigate a city.

Cycle Jerk said...

Well said Anon.


Freewheel said...

fyi, bike snob did a tweed post today:

Cycle Jerk said...

The funny thing is, I was the one who yelled "You Rapscallion!" at the metrobus. It's a small internet isn't it.

MELI. said...

cooool! sweet set :D

Freewheel said...

Great use of the word "rapscallion"! In fact, I hope you won't mind if I borrow it as necessary on my daily commute. It's so much more elegant than my usual choice words.

gwadzilla said...

great collection of photos!

I have the facial hair... but I lack the tweed

Cycle Jerk said...

Freewheel: By all means, I find that bewilderment is far more powerful that vulgarity. Make sure you trill "R" for an extra dash of aplomb. he he

Gwadz: I was talking to a penny farthing rider who said he was a friend of yours. It seems we have a tight little community here. :)