10 February 2015

Peak traffic

Each and every morning then again every afternoon, our community has peak traffic events. The most people are out operating their cars at that time. This morning I was a part of Columbia's peak traffic.

Plenty of room for all modes on the roads! And he sort of looks like me.
Credit: Vancouver Sun

My work allows me to arrive at the office within a certain range of time. I come home within a range of time. Most mornings I time my departure from home for just after I observe the peak of traffic to have passed. This morning I chose to make my exit a few minutes early, which coincided with me being on the road at a time with more than average traffic. Most mornings I scan behind me and usually there isn't a car there. Sometimes is, usually isn't. This morning almost every time I scanned there was a car there. Just a few minutes made all the difference between a chill commute to work and navigating a lot of cars!

Yesterday a journalism student stuck the camera in my face and I shared with him - and perhaps KOMU's viewers* - my thoughts on Columbia's proposed bag ban, which mirrors my sentiments about traffic. We are a highly advanced civilization. We have the organizational abilities to get by and use a lot fewer resources. For instance staggering start and end times for workers could spread traffic out across time. On a similar note, we could probably figure out how to get by without single-use plastic bags. Humans have probably done so for 99.9% of human existence.

I'll ride in peak traffic once in a while to remind myself how most folks commute. Then, for the ease on their minds and mine, I'll spread my work start and end times out again so as to have more wide open streets on which to bicycle around.

See you in the streets, Trevor

*Not sure what's on the KOMU news at 10. I'mm too busy listening to classical music or petting the cats or thinning my lettuce.

31 January 2015

Running at sunset

As the days get longer, there is more light in the after work and early evening hours. Warmer weather goes along with that longer daylight. I love running in the early evening. The setting sun glows orange, then purple, then gray to black behind winter trees bare of leaves. Neighbors lights are on during these after work hours but the shades are not yet drawn. Running by I glace in picture windows to see families getting ready for dinner. Some are already entranced by the flickering light of their idiot boxes.
Repo Man (1984)

I turned on my idiot box last night and immediately felt my i.q. drop 7 points. I quickly popped in the old standby 1984's Repo Man, which is still brilliant. After a monologue about bus riding providing ample thought time, Tracey Walter's character sums up the scene with the line "The more you drive, the dumber you are." I am mostly in agreement. Biking, walking and busing get me more in touch with the environment and my neighborhood. Driving breeds resentment in me towards my fellow Columbians who choose to pollute around town in their coffins on wheels.

Running again after recovering from a bout of plantar fasciitis, I take things slow. I try not to cover large territory or do anything too fast. I am in this race for life not to win it.

12 November 2014


Winter came on quick here in Columbia this week. I love it. When it gets cold I get to break out the layers. The layering is course the key to successful winter bicycle commuting.
This is from a few warmer months back. We got a new Aldi's in Columbia
 including a bicycle rack. The rack is not so useful since whoever installed it
mounted the thing about six inches from the front wall of the store.
This limits the racks usefulness when trying to use it as intended.

Suddenly, the streets are less full of other two-wheelers. The fair-weather riders have hopped back in their cars or quit their jobs and stay home now and await the unemployment checks to trickle in. I am glad to see other bicycle commuters. For a few weeks there up until this week there was a proliferation of bike commuters. We were everywhere. On streets, in bike lanes and on sidewalks doing our thing.

Then it got cold. It was 28 degrees on my way to work this morning. I saw no other bicycle commuters in the morning or the afternoon, which is rare. What is holding up in the cold are the bus riders. Since Columbia rejiggered the City bus routes, the whole system seems to work better for my household and the folks who ride the bus and get on along my one-and-a-half mile daily one-way work commute. They are not deterred by a little frost but perhaps bus riders lack the transportation choice that I am so well-endowed with.

A few years ago I wrote a post on this blog about how-to cold weather bicycle commute and got a snotty comment from a bicyclist in Alaska who dressed me down and said that a Missourian knows nothing about cold weather riding. I was deterred. This post contains no advice which is par for the course. What this post does contain is a high degree of satisfaction that I have switched over my summer for winter clothes, found the gloves and hats that work for the ride and am continuing my bicycle commute each and every weekday (and some weekend days, thank you) to my gig.

See you in the streets.

02 August 2014

24 July 2014

Some vegetables from the garden

When I am not bicycling or walking or working or glued to MeTV*, I garden.

Here are some of the tomatoes and cucumbers I recently harvested. 

*That's a joke.

15 July 2014

Those clouds

Currently it's 64 degrees with scattered clouds over downtown Columbia.

13 July 2014

Missouri River float: Mokane to Hermann

Bicycling is fun. So are other activities. Like floating. Yesterday, a pair of friends and I floated the Missouri River from Mokane to Hermann, Missouri. We thought it would take two days. Since the river was up and there were no sandbars to stop and play on, we cruised along and covered 29 miles in about eight hours.

My float companions: John, Mike and Smoky

Still smiling at the end of the day.

Missouri River mud

Adrift near Hermann, Missouri