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‘It’s Not a Party Without You’ Utilitaire: #11

March 8, 2012

#11. Bike to Community Meeting, Round-trip Mileage: 5.2 Miles (extra: in the dark, 3 of 2), February 21, 2012

Yesterday, I finally got the courage to break the fourth wall of the internet and finally meet the people who I follow and am followed by at the #bikeDCHH (which is twitter for ‘happy hour for people who bike in DC’). Organized by Nicole of Pedal ‘n Purl as spin-off to the popular #fridaycoffeeclub, we met up a few blocks from the White House at Cafe Mozart. I wasn’t sure where the bar was but the increasing number of bikes chained up along the block told me I was headed in the right direction.

Walking in I saw two separate groups. One was a bunch of grown-up sloppy frat boys who had exchanged their backwards baseball caps for suits. The other was a smiling diverse group who’s only thing in common were rolled up pant legs. I introduced myself to the latter. You may think that meeting a group of people who previously only existed in Twitter-world for the first time would be weird. Strangely, it wasn’t. I guess, you can really get to know someone in 120 characters or less. With beers in hand and accordion music playing, we had a great time.

For those at the other end of the table, here’s conversation you may have missed:

I met real life pirate, Jason (@gpsadc) who’s living my bachelor dream on a houseboat in the Southwest waterfront. He told us about a huge fireworks display being organized for April 7 to commemorate the 100th Anniversary of Cherry Blossom Festival.

Dave (@darsal), who I actually met a couple of days prior on the VASA ride but didn’t know it, was unfortunately not sporting his Dr. Seuss tights this time. He did supposedly have a bag full of name tags on someone’s awful suggestion beforehand.

Stats man Justin (@jdantos) and I talked about the progress being made at the College Park Metro. He was telling me about his efforts to convince WMATA to make me the CP Bike and Ride King and absolute ruler (this part may have been a bit exaggerated by me).

John (@dirteng) of the very enjoyable porta-john blog updated us on his progress to retrace the routes of 1890s century rides. He hopping to organize a group ride in late spring. We’re really looking forward to joining him.

Speaking of history, Brompton rider @rgarris told us about a project he was working on that utilizes google goggle technology as part of a cool walking history tour. In addition to information about a particular building, there will be avatars acting out historical scenes at the exact place you were standing.

I also chatted with Nicole’s beau about his search for the perfect bike. As someone who already owns four bicycles and is just waiting for the bike room to empty out a bit before getting more, I felt I couldn’t really give advice on finding the “one.”

As the evening progressed, the crowd thinned and I knew it was time to head out too. I had a dog who was patiently waiting in her box (or was it a box in a dog?). I thanked Nicole for setting up the evening (not time consuming work maybe but it’s the initiative that’s the hardest to overcome). Thanks again!

The Bridgestone with the same light set-up from ride #7

I look forward to the next #bikeDC event and still hold out hope that my 8 o’clock Friday morning meeting will be permanently cancelled.

The complete Utilitaire 12 series can be found here.

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