Archive for June, 2009

Damn, dudes! 10-14 days to be delivered from Israel to London when you say it was shipped today? I doubt it was shipped today. Though, come to think of it, maybe it’s Saturdays and not Sundays that the post offices are closed?

Going on an awesome group ride today – only ladies! 50 Fixed Women ride (though many of the ladeez won’t be riding fixed gear bicycles) from Buckingham Palace to Richmond Park where we’ll bbq or maybe just picnic. I’m bringing mangoes. Boys/stalkers/others may meet us at the Coach and Horses south of the river when we get there.

I’m trying to be proactive and get back on the bike ASAP but have a bit of nervousness b/c I’ll be riding about 7 miles by myself. Thank god it’s Sunday morning.

Coffee, toast, I’m off!

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I watch it over and over again!

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Last night I had a spill off the bike. A car started encroaching on my lane, looking like he was going to pass me and then stop in front of me, had gone in the bike lane and continuing further into it. I was going downhill, somewhat fast, and slowed down a bit then when it was clear he was continuing into my lane, I accidentally slammed on the brake. Because I was going downhill, and it was a front brake, the back wheel flipped up and I flew over the handlebars, landing on left jaw, shoulder, chest and hand. Got up immediately, had no clue how messed up I was, and ran after the guy and slapped my hand on his passenger window. He rolled down the window and I told him that he was pushing into my lane and just made me flip off my bike. He said, “I was waiting for you.” What, in my lane?

He stuck around, thank god; on my cycling forum we’re all conditioned by so many hit-and-run drivers lately to expect that drivers will just head off. He even brought out a first aid kit. Two other people stopped to help, one ran to a corner store and bought water. I discovered that I was bleeding from the chin when giant drops began falling into my bag when I went to look for something to write the driver’s info down on (and call the boyfriend). We called 999, an ambulance got there in about 10 minutes, they took my bike with us, I went to the hospital, they took xrays, I got my chin glued up, I had to scrub off my own road rash, nothing’s broken, I got a tetanus shot (the last one was likely just before entering college in ’96), I was in and out in about three hours and no one asked me a thing about paying. I’ve been told I may still receive a bill in the mail. We’ll see.

At one point, after the driver kept trying to get out of the blame (it was both of us, he was in my lane, I was going too fast downhill and didn’t employ proper use of the brake), I said to him, “For future reference, even if you are slowing down for me, being in the bike lane makes it so I can’t get around you.” When he brought over the first aid kid he had little tears in his eyes and his face was all red. I was like, “It’s ok, I mean, you know, but.”

No, I wasn’t wearing a helmet. But I have thought over the accident again and because I hit my jaw first, a helmet wouldn’t have helped me at all. In fact, a lot of helmets have stuff sticking off of them that make them worse in a crash, not better. Those retardo-looking Bell helmets that skateboarders wear are actually the best to have in an accident. They received the highest crash-test rating in a comparative study I read last year.

So I’ve bled a bit on clothes that were just sent from the States, and on my tank top (which I will embroider over) but over all I am doing ok. Just tired and sore. Had hydrocodone last night, that was lovely, but it’s ibuprofen today, I don’t need anything more.

Tons of people on the forum have been messaging me today, I missed a great West Drinks night and the boyfriend took a photo and texted it to one of the other guys who waved it around and showed everyone my bloody, taped-up chin. One friend showed up and brought me the chain ring I was supposed to pick up there. Nawrr…

Oh, and the bike is completely ok!

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: ( & : )

The boyfriend bought ice cream last night. It was Ben & Jerrys but had at some point melted and refrozen, potentially more than once. It was not fit for consumption.

In unrelated news, I have come to tell you about Spotify. It is free, awesome, and has pretty much everything you could ever want, streamed, with very minimal commercial breaks done in an NPR style.

Also, The Three O’Clock, an early-80s Paisley Underground band that sounds like Green Day really liked them.

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Yesterday I received in the mail a package of clothing from the States. Ahhh…bliss, I’m wearing all my favorite summer clothes again. Cute tops, my shorts and capris (thank god, no more hot denim in the sun!) and even a few dresses! It’s enough to lift my spirits. Spirits have been low lately due to a lack of information on the job front and a lack of ability to work in NYC during the time I have to go back to the States. As I am still not registered with the GSCC, finding jobs in London has been difficult. It’s not impossible but it looks as though I’ll have to go out of even Greater London, into nearby towns like Essex or Hertfordshire in order to find work. At the very least it will be good interview practice as I haven’t interviewed anywhere in the last four years.

Last week I saw cricket played, and participated in the playing, for the first time in my life. I’d seen maybe 45 continuous seconds of cricket, in a movie, once. Maybe 2 seconds on t.v., before someone changed the channel. The rules of classic cricket, as taught by children, are rather easy to grasp and I have to thank my bicycle riding for enabling me to chase after tennis balls for an hour and a half straight. I even got to hit the ball using one of those bats I first saw in Shawn of the Dead. Yep, I’m American.

Recently changed back to the 19t cog at the back and have bitty knee pains. We did this b/c the boyfriend sold me the excess set of wheels (Miche Primato hubs laced to Araya CT-19N gunmetal grey rims if you’re feelin’ nerdy) and I have to give back the 20t cog I was borrowing from someone else. Mostly cos I didn’t feel like cleaning the 20t cog. So, in short order, I will have almost everything new on my bike. Bought a new crank set (the bits that the pedals attach to and including a 47t chain ring) that is the correct length for me, have new bars (need a new stem), have a “new” seatpost, new wheels, and am picking up a new saddle on lend tomorrow.

It will be nice to really suit the bike to me. Then I’ll need to sell a few bits & bobs, which will make up what I have had to lay out to get this stuff.

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I swear to god, this country’s weather is insane! I can’t stop talking about it! I want to do a video of a rainy day. It was raining! Then it wasn’t! And the skies were blue! And then the sky was black! And it was raining really hard! And now it’s just spitting.

Forgot to mention, I don’t have mudflaps on the bike. Go go Gadget buttstain!

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For the second time in nearly four years I am in a city faced with a massive transportation strike. December 2005 saw a 2 day strike in New York City. I worked in the city and lived in Brooklyn at that point, and didn’t have any mode of transportation aside from my own two legs. Not long before the strike the MTA had threatened action and talked through it. When they threatened a second time, I knew it would happen and I bought a bike. Except for the first day of the strike, I was off from work, so didn’t need to cycle in. Tuesday, talks between the RMT (Rail Maritime Transit union) and the mayor broke down, prompting a strike from 7 p.m. Tuesday to sometime Friday morning. The RMT has gone so far as to blame Boris for the failure. The same goes for me now, thankfully I’m not working (I can’t imagine having to cycle 20 miles to get to work!), but I do have somewhere to be today, and the lines I’m used to going on face extreme delays.

And so I ride. And because it’s Britain, it’s raining. And then the skies are sunny. And then it rains again. So everyone, please wish me luck! I haven’t been able to afford rain gear yet!

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