Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Farewell to a Difficult Season

Today is the last day of March - and hopefully the last day of what has been a prolonged, difficult winter season. I don't think I am the only one to feel this way: Many bicycle blogs have slowed down this month - with fewer posts and fewer comments, and lots of people have mentioned feeling dispirited.

Funny that March should be the month to almost do us in, rather than January or February. But the key word is almost. My unexpected relationship with Jacqueline gave me just enough of a spiritual boost to deal with the alarming situation that greeted me upon my return to New England: days of non-stop downpours and flooding! Well, I won't let it get me down. April is just a day away and so is the warmth and colour of spring.

In the meantime, I send my regards to all the excellent blogs that have bravely hung on through the entire winter, continuing to give us wonderful posts to brighten the dreary days: EcoVelo, Let's Go Ride a Bike, Riding Pretty, Cycling is Good for You, Portlandize, Suburban Bike Mama, and Biking in Heels, just to name a few.

17 comments:

  1. It does seem that a lot of places have been having kind of weird circumstances lately, and people kind of down and out. Here in Portland, all week so far has been torrential downpours with 20-30mph winds. I can deal with it, but wow, does it make me happy to get indoors.

    Thankfully, we actually have a little sun peeking through at the moment, and we're more than halfway through a weird, stressful week at work, so here's hoping the weekend brings some lightness of being, for you as well.

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  2. This year has been particularly difficult, as archives can attest.

    But to everything there is a season, and cycling season is arriving. Hurray!

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  3. Great photograph. Good weather's coming to Boston tomorrow, so I'll see you all out and about!

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  4. I wonder if we perform a collective chant and a tribal dance and maybe sacrifice an inner tube, will spring come? Well then, I'm off to the back yard.

    Anon - Thanks. This is with a Minox 35GL and Kodak T-Max 400 film.

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  5. perhaps... I sacrificed 2 tubes already in the past week :/

    (I miss film; do you know if you can still get Tri-X? Perhaps I should find my cameras first!)

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  6. Yes, you can still get Kodak Tri-X, and it's fairly inexpensive. We don't use it, but some people love it. If you're looking for a good classic camera, cheap, right now is a great time to snag one: Levine's in South Boston is moving and they have a massive clearance sale on most of their inventory. You can get a good basic manual camera for $50.

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  7. Shhh@!! Don't tell anyone :)

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  8. For me, it has been the shock of DST sending the morning commute back to the depths of winter without even the decency of gradual change...

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  9. Aw, thanks :)

    That is a very entertaining picture.

    Hard to believe that it's April 1 already (in a couple of hours). Today was 70 degrees. Woo hoo!

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  10. Actually, cycling blogs slow down in March because we're riding more! In my case, I commute home into the wind (as does Steve A; he lives in the same area), and for me it adds maybe a half hour to my ride home! That's a half hour I might have been blogging.

    I've been working on a post of my new commute with lots of pictures, but so far I'm only halfway home. Trying to document 17 miles in pictures without using too many is harder than I thought it would be.

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  11. Farewell indeed. It's been hard and it's still being a bit poo! At least we have a daylight a lot longer. That is making things much easier!

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  12. What an aptly sad photo. Poor little bike.

    But I'm with Doohickie - it's the increase in better cycling weather I'm guessing that's putting the blog-cycle up on its kickstand. Hope your flooding clears and your tires can start singing their song of the road again.

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  13. I miss b & W film sometimes, having gone totally digital over 7 years ago. Very nice composition, Velouria. I have an early (brown-covered) Pentax K-1000 in the bag right next to my desk. hmmmm...

    I had the rims on the DL-1 professionally trued last week. While the bike spent most of it's life owned by a Raleigh dealer as his personal ride, it still needed some help with some issues I'm not qualified to attend to.
    (The owners of the local shop I took it to for service had pictures taken of themselves riding the bike with my blessing. Roadsters make friends.)

    The upshot is that I got three days of short rides in before the rain returned, on the fourth day, while I was riding.
    I no longer scoff at the notion that rod brakes do not stop well when wet.

    I would go so far as to say that my rod brakes and rims do not stop *at all* when wet.

    Um, wheee?!?

    Thankfully, I was testing this on a closed course with little chance of traffic.

    So I too await the return of clear spring weather, even out here on the sunny central California coast.

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  14. > I would go so far as to say that my rod brakes and rims
    > do not stop *at all* when wet.

    I agree, Corey. This is why I am aggressively researching possibilities of rebuilding the rear wheel of my DL-1 with a SA AWC hub.

    Re photography. I have been using digital since 2002. Digital is super convenient and absolutely fine for image capture, and that is what I use it for. And when most people say "photography" and "photo" what they really mean is "image capture" and "image". However, there are specific reasons that one might want to pursue photography per se, and not image capture by digital means. In my artwork, I have those reasons. When taking pictures of bicycles for a blog, I do not. So different methods for different purposes...

    The Pentax K-1000 is a nice SLR and I bet it looks beautiful covered in brown. I covered one of my SLRs in a deep green leather and am waiting for a reddish-brown kit for another.

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  15. That hub might be a good solution for you. I have some other ideas, which I will share later. Stopping *when you need to* is good!

    When I was working toward a BFA, a good camera was essential for helping compose and taking essential photo-reference. Correct depth of field and good clarity made the difference between useful reference and a waste of time and money.
    Digital photography was very new, rare, and expensive, then.
    Later, many of my painter classmates started messing about in the darkrooms, and some of us became pretty good photographers after a while.
    So, I do get the distinction you're making.

    I do so little composing for drawings or paintings these days that thumbnail sketches are my preferred compositional method.

    I'd love to see the green-leather clad SLR. What sort is it?



    Corey K

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