Posts Tagged ‘ bikes ’

I Love wikiHow, or, “this how to look in a club so boys will rock your life”

WikiHow is the greatest thing on the internet.

How To Look Simple Yet Stunning

Get some neon tee shirts from a thrift store.

If no handgrips or purses are available you can get a bookbag with glitter.

How To Stay In Love

4. Love the other person.

Oh, right!

How To Survive Under Martial Law

Things You’ll Need

  • Common Sense

Bolded emphasis not mine, but original. Indeed.

How To Share The Road With Cyclists

Don’t be in such a hurry.

How To Dress Up That Little Black Dress

Want to read the dowdiest style advice in the history of the internet?

3. Add pantyhose. Pantyhose even out your skin tone on your legs and provide the finishing touch to the look. For evening wear, sheer black or gray tinted pantyhose are an excellent choice.

Ew. By the end of this article, you will have put on pantyhose, jewelry (the plural), a belt, a scarf, gloves (white for daytime!), a bag, makeup matched to "the main color scheme arising from your accessories, shoes, and pantyhose" (that emphasis is mine HA), and headwear and hair accessories (they suggest a well-placed hat for, among other things, royal events).

Guys, how you dress up a little black dress is getting one that fits you and then putting on one awesome accessory, preferably either a family heirloom or something enormous and sparkly you bought at Claire’s. Tell ’em Melissa sent you.

Also, one of the girls in one of the pictures is wearing a dress that is decidedly blue.

How To Dress To Make Yourself Look Skinnier

Nail polish is very important.

How To Get Your Overly Sensitive Boyfriend To Dump You

Carefully consider whether this method is right for you. The steps below will cause your sensitive boyfriend a great deal of pain and trauma, much more than ending the relationship directly. It may even scar them permanently. Your mind must be made up that you want to cause this pain and trauma, or you may be unable to go through with it. This is also a good time to consider whether this is right for your relationship. Consider a direct break up. Using these steps as a first resort could backfire on you, causing strain between yourself and others, who may perceive you to be creating an abusive relationship.

Okay. Look. Okay.

How To Be Kind

Actually, I love this one.

Through being kind, you take a stand by affirming that caring for others, for our environment, for yourself is the right way to live life. It isn’t about immediate effectiveness; kindness is a lifestyle choice, a constant hum and rhythm accompanying every single thing that you think and do.

Favorite Daily Photos: There Will Be Foolias

Weekend Adventures: Bike Rides, Shopping, Arrests, Cup Holder!

The winter doldrums finally broke and let me have a great weekend. My girlfriend and I went out on Friday and Saturday nights, spent all day Saturday and Sunday riding around having adventures, watched football, danced, ate every delicious thing. Adventures included, but were not limited to:

I finished mad Christmas shopping at Eastern Market and downtown. Besides being super productive, I got to see all sorts of things – like the cupcake truck!

Usually I regard random cupcake truck sightings as a sign from the universe that I am loved and deserve a cupcake – but I was full from lunch and opted to take a picture instead.

I also took a picture of some stranger’s super-sweet cruiser bike.

That decal on the top post says "Pabst Blue Ribbon." I love you and your bike, unknown hipster kid.

I had some surprisingly awesome customer service experiences. Usually when shopping in December I think of mall-related misery. When I entered the Ace Hardware on 5th street, the greeter asked me what I was looking for and, after directing me upstairs, muttered, "Coming upstairs for zip ties," into the radio at her neck. I was buoyed through the store on a current of charming employees saying, "Zip ties? Right this way!" It was a miracle. The little things make me happy, y’all.

I tried the new Harris Teeter on M street, too. It is full of shiny produce and free samples and tempting hot food bars. And it has sweet ample bike parking.

The lady and I went out and danced like fiends. A friend’s birthday party started at a salsa club. To be honest I know about one one-thousandth of a percent about how to salsa dance, but a few rum and diets and a lot of energy more than made up for the lack. We moved to Chief Ike’s, where the hip hop is a little more my style, and then had a transcendent experience at Amsterdam Falafel. We hailed a cab at a shocking hour and had the unique delight of watching some people get arrested outside of Tom Tom’s from inside the cab’s warm confines. It was, all in all, one of the most fun nights out I’ve had in a hot minute.

But all of these adventures pale in comparison to the epic purchase I made. That’s right, as promised, I bought Farrah a cup holder! I find I spontaneously add an exclamation point every time I type the words cup holder! That, my friends, is how excited I am about it.

My first hint of the magic was in some of the photos on Simply Bike. As it got colder I started to crave a warm bev to help me along. By the end of this weekend, my obsession had reached a fever pitch. (Seriously, I wouldn’t shut up about it.)

It took a few tries, but I finally found one available from my friends at BicycleSPACE. It is everything I dreamed it would be and more – I got into work this morning on an exhilarating caffeine and exercise buzz, chirping "Good morning!" at everyone in a very un-Monday fashion.

Like I said – the little things.

On Being Tired, & A Few More Thoughts On Winter Biking

Writing? Oh, but I am le tired. After I first started working, I told my mother I couldn’t figure out anything except that everyone with 9-to-5s at desks must be achy and tired all the time – I believe my mother just rolled her eyes. I may be too spoiled to ever take on a mortgage and children like her, conquered as I am by a little overtime and – quel dommage – social and holiday gatherings with family and friends. Yoga helps with the aches, but I still get le tired.

Yesterday morning, after nearly crying with exhaustion as I biked into a headwind to take on a twelve-hour workday, I sat at my desk and drank an extra cup of coffee (or two) slowly, just pretending to look at emails. The little break made all the difference – I felt the extra caffeine hit me and three days of grumpiness just lifted away.

All the alcohol around at holiday type things is starting to get to me, and I’m booked up with parties all the weekends between now and New Year’s. I spent last winter either drunk or hungover and ended up, you’ll be surprised to hear, pretty depressed. Now it’s been cold for two weeks and already all I want to do is crack bottle after bottle of wine and wait for April.

I haven’t quite given up yet. But, this is a life rule, instead of trying to do all the things all at once I just look for the next right thing. Which right now is to write a little, even if it’s just about how I’m tired and don’t want to write.

It has also still been to ride my bike around, even though everyone is just being shocked about what superheroes the lady and I are. Note that link is to an article about biking in Chicago, which is a whole nother kettle of fish. Early next week it’s supposed to be windy with a high of 28, and I may or may not be tough enough – but our 30s and 40s so far have been fine. I keep saying, it’s genuinely not bad and certainly better than waiting at a bus stop.

Last night I stayed at work late for an event, and nobody wanted to let me leave on the bike. My mother, who came for the party, went into lecture mode, my boss offered to try to strap the bike to her car, and one of the security guards told me to be safe at least three times as I was unlocking. "You take care of my Melissa, now," he urged.

And then it was lovely. The wind from the morning had died down and rush hour was over, so I flew across town on quiet, brightly lit streets. I made it home just in time for Modern Family with enough of a second wind from the exercise to watch it without falling asleep. I wished I could have brought all the naysayers along – just to say, see? It’s beautiful! Try it once, and I guarantee you will at least like it better than the bus.

Oh, dear reader, did you really make it all the way to the end of this? You’re a better human than I. Have a laugh. Go look at the celebriducks.

Perfectly Windy Skies & Winter Biking

It’s starting to get cold. Fall has been mild – yesterday morning it was sixty degrees or something – but winter always comes eventually. Certainly the temperatures are dropping, but mostly I notice it in the brittle quality of the light and the relentless wind.

That’s the old post office tower – screw the Washington Monument, it’s the best view in DC, tell ’em Melissa sent you – and lately it’s been looking so ominous under the thin, pale winter sky.

A few weeks ago I was trucking my bike around and had this exchange with a friend –

"What are you going to do when it gets cold?"
"Wear a coat."
"Badass!"

Yes, yes, I’m very impressive. Except not really, because my non-bike option isn’t a car, it’s public transit and my own two feet. Bicycling warms up my core and gets me to my centrally heated destinations faster – nothing grueling or virtuous about it. I expect Farrah will help make this winter much easier than last.

Except, OMIGOD, the wind. I seem to be pushing into a headwind no matter which way I go.

There is one good hill on my commute, down in the morning and up in the afternoon, on the Capitol grounds. I have no concept of how steep or long this hill would seem to serious cyclists, but for me it is intense – when I first started, I figured out my old route through downtown specifically to avoid it. Now, I don’t have to walk, but I do sometimes drag myself up thinking all the way about either walking or dying. I guess some other times it is easy, and before I know it I’m exhilarated at the top, but the wind this past week or two has made those occasions more rare even as (I hope) I’m getting stronger.

From the top, you can see the Washington Monument rising into whatever skies the season brings. It’s a beautiful view every time, as long as I can breathe hard enough to get oxygen to my eyeballs.

I’d like to get the feeling on record, so that in a few months – when I’m coasting up like the terrifying Spandexed waifs on their skinny road bikes – I can look back and laugh.

November Review

November has been a money-focused month for me.

I bet that would give people who know me a good laugh – I am always budgeting, re-running my budget numbers, worried about staying on budget, talking about my budget. Love that budget! I have a nonprofit salary, city living expenses, some student debt and not a whole lot to fall back on, so it’s a hustle. I’ve had to save rigorously just to cover the next emergency.

But recently, I’ve been enjoying the fruits of a wee pay bump. I did indeed re-run my budget numbers, but mostly what I’m doing is just socking away the additional money in my savings accounts – I have one for emergencies, one for travel and one for large irregular purchases. Perversely, forcing myself not to touch that extra money makes it easier to be frugal and stay on budget. Instead of saying, well I shouldn’t buy this or that because it will make the monthly hustle a teeny tiny fraction easier, I say, I shouldn’t buy this or that because I’m choosing to use my money for fun and for big goals. Psh, easy.

Technically speaking, I did spend over budget some in November, but it’s okay – I paid for a bunch of fast food traveling to New York, I bought all my Christmas presents, and generally can feel okay about dipping into those savings accounts to cover these things if it turns out to be a hustle.

All right – that’s boring. What else happened in November? The weather was pleasantly mild and I wanted to be outside as much as I could, enjoying it before winter. I feel like I spent the whole month on my bike.

Those columns used to be part of the U.S. Capitol, and now they live in a field in the middle of the National Arboretum. The arboretum is a great place for a bike-adventure – my lady and I had a date there this month – because it is beautiful and full of surprises and oh my god the hills will work your bum.

On another bike date day we found ourselves at the Hide/Seek exhibition at the National Portrait Gallery. I only made it halfway through because it was so overwhelming and I wanted to read every word and see every detail. I have to go back and finish before it closes, and then possibly go to Jaleo and weep desperately into a pitcher of sangria.

Oh, and in November I started writing in this little journal! It’s good for the soul. Thanks, little journal.

Bike’s-Eye View

It’s a slow day, clearing up my inbox and making my plan for the holiday. I’m expecting more family commitment than usual this Thanksgiving, but I hope to keep my wits (and my bike and this blog) about me.

Meanwhile, I have been trying to take more photos and especially to keep my camera ready on my commute. It is definitely an interesting balance (ha, literally, ba dum bum CHING) especially with the rush of the morning commute and the darkness of the evening, but I’m getting better. So, a quick shot for a slow day.