Sunday, November 30, 2008

Traffic calming on Lyndale South

Lyndale is sorta complete, it appears. By complete, I mean that it is connected from the freeway in the North to the Parkway in the South and that the construction equipment is (mostly) out of the way and stripes are down. Hurrah!

This is good or bad news depending upon your view of the glass -- half full or half who-the-hell-drank-half-my-whisky. Lyndale is is reborn from about 40th south to the Parkway, complete with turn lanes, parking cut-outs and manner of swervy concrete on the sides of the street and sometimes in the middle of the street. Gone is the almost-wide-enough-for-two-lanes lanes and the unimpeded motion for blocks at a time. Now we are looking at one lane for forward traffic, and one lane only mind you, and a copious sprinkling of new stop signs to keep the cagers in line. Lots of things in the way and ways to make the cars move slowly down the street. Traffic calmed, as it were.

Now, in an earlier, more rush-ed (Shakespearian pronunciation, two syllables please) age, I would be angered by said modernization. But now, as a less rush-ed person, a bicyclist and one who is beginning to appreciate the urban landscape, I applaud the changes. There is room to bike without fear of some dingleberry in a SUV driving over you in his imaginary second lane. Lanes are no wider than necessary for a car and turn lanes and parking abound. Rah-rah, good show lads.

As a I'm-just-bloody-glad-there-is-still-whisky in my glass sort of fellow, I cheer along with what I can I can only hope are the people who live along the street; no longer are they and theirs threatened by speeding vehicles and your "Please Slow Down, We Live Here" signs can be given to more deserving folks now along other streets. I've already noticed a kinder, gentler traffic while biking home from rescuing my dear Mrs' purse from the Bulldog. It seems that folks were kind enough to let me pass cars parked in the new cut-outs and then passed when I moved out of the lane -- no tailgating, no horns, nothing.

I like it already, more like this please...

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Best Cranberry Sauce Ever

We make this every year and I never tire of it:

Cranberry Sauce with Pinot Noir
1 tbsp oil
2 cups cranberries (about 8 ounces)
1 tbsp minced fresh ginger
2 cups Pinot Noir or other dry red wine (we used Zinfandel)
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 tsp curry powder
3 tbsp chopped crystallized ginger
large pinch of Chinese 5 spice powder

Heat oil in large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add cranberries and fresh ginger; stir until cranberries begin to burst, about 3 minutes. Add wine and sugar; boil until mixture is reduced to 2 1/2 cups, about 15 minutes. Add crystallized ginger, curry powder and 5 spice powder. Season with salt and pepper.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Crunchy beard

It's getting cold, I'm not sure if you've noticed. You haven't stopped riding, right? If you have, you're missing the best time of the year; no pathletes, no little kids wobbling all over the paths, no skaters. Just we few, we happy few, we band of cyclists...

I've gotten the clothes down: light wool sweater and a rain jacket, wool socks and a light hat under my helmet. The shoes are starting to let me down, so I'll attempt to find warmer ones and though I may have dismissed them last year, I'll say that the Novara Headwind gloves are actually working well. I don't know why I was so down on them after I purchased them last year, but I take back any horrible things I may have said. They work just fine.

Ride yer damn bike. There's no such thing as bad weather, just bad clothing.

Do it for Doug...

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Dear CNN

I don't care what Sarah Palin has to say about anything any more.

She lost.

Tuesday, November 04, 2008


I voted just before 8:00 AM this morning and almost 200 people had voted before me (including one lovely Mrs Yam). Lines like I'd never seen before, but people were in good spirits so the wait wasn't so unendurable.

Obligatory biking note: as I was riding out of the polling place, a woman was getting into line and sang, "cool cool cool cool bike" as I rode past.