Thursday, May 27, 2010

Bike To Work Day 2010: It Actually Works!

See that thing to the left of my LHT (yeah you know me)? It's a coworkers bike, that he rode in on, on Bike to Work Day. After some pestering during the week I was still doubtful that  I would see him at the Bethesda pit stop.  As I was packing up to leave he showed up with a huge smile on his face. He was coming up from the Hill which was a longer commute that I do by 5 miles. He has now decided to make the trek across the mall and up the Georgetown Branch to Bethesda twice a week! That makes 3 bike commuters in the office after 3 years of me being the only "crazy" bike commuter.

Cheers to everyone who organized another great pit stop.

Monday, May 24, 2010

No Longer Lost: World Cupage

Now that LOST is over many people find themselves wandering aimlessly though the streets no longer able to rely on the television as their unwavering life companion. Well fear not TV idiots, the World Cup is just a few weeks away! I know it's all over the web by now but I thought you might want to see the Nike ad one more time.

Here's a link to the schedule.

Get psyched people.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Bike To Work Day 2010: No Excuses

I've written before about the curse of Bike To Work Day where it's doomed to be soggy every year. Happily this doesn't seem to be the case for BTWD 2010. I've checked the forecast and everything looks good.

So there you have it, there are no good excuses for flaking out this Friday. Spread the word, pester the non-believers, and get your shit together before Saturday. 

Monday, May 17, 2010

There Is No Need For A Bike To Work Day In The Netherlands

Only a handful of cars make it into view during this Netherlands rush hour video. Just bikes, buses, and rails doing their thing. It's hard to imagine this as the future for DC but I believe it will come eventually. The worse things get the more people will change.

markenlei  April 28, 2010 — Morning rush hour in the 4th largest city in the Netherlands. Streets look like this when 33% of ALL trips are made by bicycle!

This is an ordinary Wednesday morning in April 2010 at around 8.30 am. Original time was 8 minutes that were compressed into 2 minutes, so everything is 4 times faster than in reality. The sound is original.

This is one of the busiest junctions in Utrecht a city with a population of 300,000. No less than 18,000 bicycles and 2,500 buses pass here every day. And yet Google Street View missed it. Because private motorized traffic is restricted here.

These cyclists cross a one way bus lane (also used by taxis and municipal vehicles), two light rail tracks and then a one way street that can be used by private vehicles.

Behind the camera is a railway (you can hear the squeaking sounds of the trains passing) and the main railway station is very close too. A number of rental bikes from the station pass and many of the cyclists will have come by train for the first part of their commute.

For those who frown upon the total absence of bike helmets in this video, consider these findings from a US study:

"Cycling in the Netherlands is much safer than in the USA. The Netherlands has the lowest non-fatal injury rate as well as the lowest fatality rate, while the USA has the highest non-fatal injury rate as well as the highest fatality rate. Indeed, the non-fatal injury rate for the USA is about 30 times higher than for the Netherlands.

Injury rate per million km cycled: USA 37.5; NL 1.4
Fatality rate per 100 million km cycled: USA 5.8; NL 1.1"

From: Pucher, John and Buehler, Ralph (2008) 'Making Cycling Irresistible: Lessons from The Netherlands, Denmark and Germany'.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Bike To Work Day 2010: Time To Annoy Your Co-Workers

Bike To Work Day is coming up next Friday the 21st. Time to annoy your co-workers, family, and friends about why they don't bike to work. I know, I know, that's EVERY DAY! I've been thinking of different marketing slogans for BTWD 2010. Something to really motivate my co-workers to bike in. Here's what I've come up with:

BTWD 2010 -  Make a commitment not to sucking!

BTWD 2010 -  Would Jesus sit in his car like a douche bag every morning if he had the choice?

BTWD 2010 -  Cyclists have amazing asses. See? 

BTWD 2010 -  You'll get a free t-shirt that will make people think you give a crap.

BTWD 2010 -  Earn that burrito for once!

BTWD 2010 -  The one day a year where I won't be more awesome than you.

That's the best I could do over my lunch break. Please comment with any slogans you think might work. 

Thursday, May 6, 2010

More Bling For Silver Spring

For those of use who've lived in the area a long time it's well known that progress hasn't come easy to Silver Spring. Most of this struggle I blame on wretched architecture and the failed attempts at restoration and mimicry of said wretchedness.

The old Hecht Company building which was reborn into the Shitty Place (city place). A glowing beacon of wretchedness.

Happily that's all behind us. In the past decade Silver Spring has successfully been reborn into a very, very cool place to live, even more so now with an influx of new hip dining options.

Last night I tested the waters at Pacci's, an upscale Italian pizzeria and bar.

It was a very good evening, especially given that they just opened on Friday. There are still a few wrinkles to iron out but the pizzas were delicious. They were on par with Two Amys and slightly better than Mia's in Bethesda (which I love).  The crust is very good, the ingredients are fresh, and the Montepulciano goes perfectly.

Another recent opening is 8407 Kitchen Bar, opened by the owner of Mrs. K's and headed by Chef Pedro Matamoros (from Nicaro).

I freakin' love this place. Pedro has a great imagination and the menu reflects it. Lot's of exposed beams and brick make the interior very comfortable. I wouldn't have thought overlooking the metro construction would be a plus but I kind of like it.

Lastly, the Hook & Ladder Brewing Company  Fire Station 1 is turning the old fire station into a micro brewery cliché from the looks of the menu and poor website design... said to open in early 2010 and it looks like their well under way. We'll see.

Bling Blingy Silver Springy...

Thursday, you're just not Friday (unless I take tomorrow off).

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

God Bless Copenhagen

A hotel in Copenhagen is offering guests the chance to earn a free meal if they are willing to put some effort into powering the building. via BBC

The deal is if a guest generates 10 watts of power for the hotel they get a free meal at the hotel restaurant. If the food is decent and full of carbs that's a pretty good deal. 

This Morning's Commute And My Dinner With The Mushroom People

It was so damn nice out this morning I had to get some photos to prove it. I didn't see a lot of wildlife but then again I didn't really have the time to look. 
Sligo Creek
Along the Capital Crescent Trail

Here is a shot of the beginning of the end. Workers have been drilling holes up and down the trail for about a month now; preliminary work for the Purple Nurple.

Black Locust flowers blanket several sections of the trail, and after attending last night's annual MAW tasting I've learned that these flowers are edible and quite tasty! So I gathered some to eat with my lunch. The flowers are sweet and have a nice texture. Caution: Only eat the flowers, NOT THE LEAVES.

Speaking of the MAW Spring Wild Food Tasting Event, it was a blast! So much so that I hardly had time to take photos. It was my first time but it seemed like a pretty good showing.

A crowd favorite was Mitch's rather large morels of which I sadly missed out on.

I made a Chicken of the Woods Curry with a large pile of chicken of the woods I found earlier in the week.

I was so busy cooking and serving that this was the only shot I got of my curry, of which I only got one bite of. 

The other big plus for the evening was meeting lot's of cool like minded folks like Matt and Elizabeth, check them out at The Natural Capital.