When the first diamond frame bicycles became popular in the 1890s they were often called "wheels" - the national cycling association was called the "League of American Wheelmen." We have moved from "wheels" to "bikes," but the bicycles have remained remarkably the same over more than 100 years - elegant in their efficiency and simplicity. And many of the issues that we think are new? They were around then too.
Monday, July 7, 2014
Fast Commute to Work
My route from south Arlington to Capitol Hill
According to the GPS driven app on my phone, the distance from my front door to work is 9.25 miles using my usual bike route. Today, thanks to some wind from the south (which is unusual in the morning), it took only 34 minutes and 18 seconds and my average speed was 16.2 mph.
Just to be clear, I'm not someone who obsesses about the speed of my bicycle riding efforts, but someone was asking about how far my occasional lunchtime jog is and I now have a so-called smartphone and found an appropriate app, so I was curious mostly to know what it would report as the distance of my commute. Years ago I estimated using Google maps that it was around 9.6 miles, so apparently I was a little high since it is almost exactly 9 1/3 miles. Oh well. I was amused today when I used the app riding in when I realized that the wind was coming from the south and that I would be a "fast" time (fast for me) because that wind pushing me up the river makes a difference. I don't think there are too many days where my commute is under 35 minutes. (Again - not that I'm paying much attention.)
Fanciful sail-bikes from 1894
One of those ideas from the 1890s that didn't catch on.
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