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Today is overcast and cool. It’s the perfect day to ride to a coffee shop and get a cup. Then on the way home find some leaves to ride through.

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Just a quick reminder: this Halloween weekend involves not one but two bike good times. Friday, meet up at 7 o’clock (eveningtime) at the Washington Monument for a Critical Mass ride. Last year took about an hour and a half, didn’t involve hills, and didn’t involve anything that dangerous and/or antagonistic. The more people that ride, the better it works. Also: wear a costume.

Saturday is the Black Cat Alleycat, which (I’m pretty sure) is the first alleycat Baltimore’s had since last year’s Shop Gentei race. Well, Shop Gentei’s all into motorcycles now or something, and it didn’t look like it was going to happen again this year until a couple of weeks ago when a flier started circulating on the internet and some dude started hitting up shops for sponsorships. Details are pretty scarce, but a post over at cyclocity.com says to expect it to be “SHORT,” adding “Expect it to be free! I don’t expect much more than that.” Meet up at 6 p.m. at the Convention Center (presumably in the front). Costume mandatory.

[Photo by Abby]


After a warm weekend, I find my morning commute chilly through the wooded parts of Wyman Park and the Jones Falls Trail.

I hope Mr. Moon is wrong about the relative multitude of cyclists in Baltimore lately. (Read this.) Just like rain won’t melt you, cold won’t crack you.

You know, I hate to say it. But it seems like the title “cyclist” might need…qualifying sometimes, for some people. Someone who does a lot of downhilling or racing might not want the same word to apply to me as to them. “Utility cyclist” or “Fred” or “Hybrid-rider” might be preferable to them to refer to me.

I’m just as guilty. Sometimes I find myself thinking that “summer cyclist” would be a good name for people who pack up and start driving when the leaves start changing and falling. But it’s the same crap as making fun of a gal/guy on a cruiser or hybrid or etc. As much as I am tempted to get all self-righteous because I ride year-round, cheers still to anyone who used a bike for transportation this summer. Yonder time (2005), I used to drive/own a car. Cyclists insulting me might have kept me there a little longer. So I won’t be a jerk.

Instead of insulting you, I’d encourage you to keep on riding. Cold-weather riding has its own hidden treats. If you prefer to drive/take transit this winter, well hell, still thanks for joining us this summer. See ya next year, maybe a month or two earlier :-) (And maybe seeing some of us riding around Baltimore with holiday decorations on our bikes can tempt you out a few times.)

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