Friday Coffee Club Turns Three

Today we celebrated three years since that first tweet from Felkerino introducing Friday Coffee Club, a weekly D.C. meetup of commuting cyclists around the area.

FCC turns 3-Lisa Ed

Three full years, and we’re still meeting and enjoying morning beverages together. I don’t want to overanalyze the reasons why people continue to come to Friday Coffee Club, but I’ll throw a few thoughts onto the page.

No confusion. Friday Coffee Club is every week, same time, same place.

FCC Kirstin

FCC 3rd anniv

People invite their friends to go on a bike ride that ends at Friday Coffee Club.

Pete and Ed

You can exchange notes with other commuters without a 140-character limit.

FCC Outside edition

Bicycle window shopping.

Bike inspection FCC

An opportunity to stop and see friends you might only otherwise cross in passing.

B and Ted

Friday Coffee Club boasts the shortest group ride ever– the weekly rollout through the White House Plaza.

FCC rollout

There’s coffee, and latte art if you’re lucky. Swing’s has been good to us.

FCC latte art

Oh, and of course, many photo ops.

FCC Peter-Swings

Here’s to another great year of a.m. fellowship at Friday Coffee Club. Thank you, BikeDC.

Bikes Are Not Family Members, But…

After a month spent in delightful lollygag mode, Felkerino and I pumped up the tires on the Co-Motion Java tandem for our first century ride of 2015.

As I rode along looking alternately at Felkerino’s backside and a somewhat snotty top tube resulting from my runny nose, I was wholly grateful for the hours and miles together on our beautiful, sturdy, and maybe somewhat dirty, tandem. Continue reading Bikes Are Not Family Members, But…

Lifestyle Changes in Small Packages: Brown Bag Lunch

In 2013, I read David A. Kessler’s somewhat horrifying yet engrossing book The End of Overeating, in which he provides an inside look at how the food industry perpetually entices us to shove the ideal mix of sugar, fat, salt, and who knows what else down our throats.

After being shown how I was being taken for a ride by companies that say they prepare “food,” but want us to be loyal patrons of junk, I committed to making changes in my diet. I bought fewer prepared foods, read food labels more consistently, and ate more fruits and vegetables. Continue reading Lifestyle Changes in Small Packages: Brown Bag Lunch

Coffeeneuring Housekeeping: Patches

This note is specifically for the Coffeeneuring Class of 2014.

All patches were mailed on December 30, both to those living in the U.S. as well as the International Cadre of Coffeeneurs.

What I’m saying is everyone should have received the patches they ordered/earned (unless you are a D.C.-based person, in which case I should have already spoken with you to figure something out).

If you did not receive a patch and believe you should have, please let me know, either through the Contact form or via my “gersemalina” gmail.

Hope everyone’s 2015 is off to a good start. Back soon with another blog post from the recesses of my mind.

Combating Cynicism Through Active Commutes

Today I was reading David Foster Wallace’s commencement speech “This is Water.”  In it, he addresses the theme of selfishness, as well as the tedious aspects of adult life and how we all construct and view our life experiences.

Our challenge, he says, is to step outside ourselves, take an active role in interpreting our surroundings, and not succumb to that everyday tediousness.

I call this fighting cynicism. In recent years, the importance of this challenge has been very present in my own mind. It’s easy for me to become irritated by the day-to-day administrative functions of my life as I fume about how they hold me back from a potentially “rad” existence. I’ve been hearing that word “rad” a lot lately, and I hate it, so I’m using it here. Cynicism! Wait, where was I?

As I read David Foster Wallace’s speech, I thought that it would have benefitted from a paragraph suggesting that one of the best ways to stave off cynicism is through actively commuting, whenever you can. Continue reading Combating Cynicism Through Active Commutes

BikeDC Commutes 2014: The Months in Photos

As I was assembling my recent post about 12 months of running in D.C., I realized that I wanted a memory of the past year’s bike commutes in the city.

Considering I spent much of the year feeling blasé about the urban bike experience, my photos make it seem like it wasn’t so bad. As if I enjoyed it, even. Continue reading BikeDC Commutes 2014: The Months in Photos

The Wheelman’s Song

Those of you who follow me on Instagram may have noticed that I’ve been perusing old issues of The Wheelman and Good Roads.

Both magazines were publications of the League of American Wheelman, which is now the Bike League, and date back to the late 1800’s, when people’s fascination with the bicycle was just beginning to take hold in the United States.

The excitement and novelty of riding a bicycle permeates these editions. From tour recounts to illustrations and poems, men (mostly men, as women are unfortunately largely absent from these publications) unabashedly adored bike riding.

An example of this appreciation for the bike is found in the poem below, “Wheelman’s Song, ” written by Will Carleton in 1884. It seemed a fitting way to end one year and help inspire the next. Continue reading The Wheelman’s Song

Dig Deep. Flow Like Water: Goals Met and Unmet in 2014

As each calendar year begins, I consider the activities I’d like to accomplish and how I want to go about them. I record my intended approach as a theme.

The emergence of a year’s theme is based partly on anticipation, a bit on what’s transpired in the past, and my mood at the time. I usually flesh it out in January, when Felkerino and I are plotting vacations, brevets, marathons, and things.

A theme can also be like a like a mantra, used to underly the year’s activities and any goals I’ve set.

The theme for 2014 was “Dig Deep. Flow Like Water.” Initially, the ideas of digging deep and flowing like water struck me as contrary, but as I reflect on the year I see how they played out together. Continue reading Dig Deep. Flow Like Water: Goals Met and Unmet in 2014

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