Archive for the ‘clothes’ Category

temperate climes

Thursday, October 25th, 2007

I am officially unemployed now, so no commute, but today was another gorgeous sunny day…! So I hopped on my bike to run some errands and tool around the city. Inspired by the Vélocouture Flickr group, I wore my favorite dress:

I probably covered 15 miles or so, and caught the sunset/moonrise on my way home.

It was a nice contrast from yesterday, when I looked like this when I got home:

I guess you can’t really tell that I am pretty much soaked through in that picture. But I am. Woo Portland!

pretty beautiful

Monday, October 22nd, 2007

Boy is today ever a day for falling in love with Portland for the thousandth time. After work I took a detour to go by the cleaners’ to see if I could pick up my purple jacket… they were closed, but I got to ride leisurely through some close-in southeast neighborhoods I’d never spent time in and admire old houses with huge porches and strip off my layers one by one to feel the sun on my arms. I ended up on Belmont and decided to ride over to Hawthorne and stop at Ben & Jerry’s to treat myself to a scoop of Phish Food ’cause the weather was damn well perfect for it! Yum.

(Note the BLUE SKY.)

At work today I bought a big ol’ handlebar bag that just so happens to be a fantastic shade of salmon pink. My bike keeps getting heavier and I keep loving it more. My dad helped me pick out a small multitool to carry around today, and as we were comparing them, he said things like, “well, this one weighs more, and you probably won’t need these things…” Hah! Weight shmeight.

When I’m riding my bike and thinking about the blog entry I’m going to write about riding my bike, the entry always has a graceful continuity and flows easily from one thing I want to mention to the next. When I write it down it doesn’t work as well, of course, or I don’t have the patience to figure out how to make it work.

Anyway. My dad has a great time on his superlight carbon fiber bike. My coworkers have a great time wearing lycra to commute and racing cyclocross on the weekends. I have a great time riding to work in jeans and schlepping everything in the sun around on my bike. Conclusion: bikes = great time!!

I regularly read a bunch of sites that encourage people to think of biking as an easy, laidback way of getting around, not involving a change of clothes or even too much sweatiness. For example, Clever Cycles is a shop that opened up just this summer down on Hawthorne, and one of the owners keeps a great blog at their site about the merits of the Dutch approach to city biking, etc. And just today I found this awesome Flickr group: V√©locouture. Pictures of well-dressed people wearing clothes they bike in! I admit I am much less creative most of the time. I snapped this picture in my front yard when I got home this evening (”snapped” makes it sound easy. I balanced my camera on my housemate’s car, set the timer, ran and picked up my bike):

This is pretty much what I wear to work every day. If it’s cold (and it usually is in the morning), I add a cycling jacket (longer in the back, which I appreciate) and a pair of cheap knit gloves, and I pull my hood up under my helmet to keep my ears warm. If it’s wet, I add a pair of oh-so-sexy rain pants and maybe pack an extra sweatshirt in case my jacket gets soaked through. I wear these fabulous amazing super-comfortable and totally beat up boots just about every day, and the legwarmers and fingerless gloves (both of which are from Sock Dreams, a nice little business that happens to be based here in Portland) are pretty much staples as well. Maybe when I’m not working in a warehouse it’ll be easier to be creative. In the meantime, I’m comfy, at least.

Speaking of bikey fashion, I (and my bike) would love to receive a pair of these hammered steel fenders for Christmas. Y’know.

Biking is amazing. Every morning my alarm goes off while it’s still pitch dark outside and I struggle out of bed. But eventually I get on my bike and I bike to work and the sun comes up and the morning light is beautiful when it hits the orange and red and yellow trees (the green ones, too) and by the time I’m at work I’m downright cheerful. Maybe that’s ’cause I only have two days left there. I quit my job. Did I mention that?

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