I got to get up at 6:30 this morning and ride my bike to work–yes, all of this is happening on a Saturday–to give a final exam. We all sat there dutifully, them scribbling along, me looking busy, for four hours. Sigh. I was tired, but the day was lovely, so I rode over to Mid-City to see R.’s new apartment and then just pedaled around until I found D. on a porch. It’s Jazz Fest time, so everybody is on the porch and watching the crowds roll by. I snapped this picture from a most beautiful porch while D. and M. moved cars around like Tetris pieces. Yeah, I’m glad I took my bike, as were those folks walking the wrong way down Esplanade who could ask me, because I wasn’t locked up in a car, “Where is Jazz Fest?” A couple beers and several conversations later and I was pedaling along empty streets on my way home, smooth and mindless circles. I picked up Bicycling Magazine from home and grabbed a salad on the corner. Colin McEnroe writes, “Look what I’ve accomplished, and I have 14 whole gears I haven’t even touched yet.” Oh my, exactly.
Oh, that was a long time away from my bicycle! I spend every single day on that thing, and then I had to spend an entire week away–I didn’t properly prepare for that, not at all. I got on my bike this morning and just went ahead and pedaled myself back to myself. The rides from here to there today were just exactly what I needed. Using the bike to move through space, that’s what I do now, and it was good to come home. Continue reading
If you met me today, you might think I have always been into bikes, but the truth is, I’ve only been riding regularly for a few years. I can’t really remember what I did before I wanted to ride a bike around everyday, but I vaguely remember that I spent a lot of it smoking. In other words, I have come to ride a bike in New Orleans, where it is flat, flat, flat. Continue reading
Today was my last day of classes for the semester, and in the fall, I’ll be teaching somewhere else. It all felt rather bittersweet. I have loved teaching at Tulane. I enjoy the students, my colleagues, the Take Your Professor to Lunch program (I’ve been eating with charming students on the college’s dime for weeks now), Doug in Media Services, the two way mirror separating me from R. in our basement offices inside the old children’s anxiety clinic (no, really–it’s nice down there (that’s what she said)), and all the campus cats. Fortunately, I get to teach summer school, so I’ll be eased out slowly. Continue reading
Today was another long, 14 hour Monday, so my only ride was my commute to campus for three classes and the last meeting of my wonderful faculty seminar–I will miss my colleagues there, for sure. I will also miss my super-smart seminar students, so today’s last class meeting was bittersweet. I have had great students at Tulane–curious, smart, creative–just a pleasure to learn with, for sure. After that last class I needed to work out the feelings of saying goodbye to the majors (I’m moving on to a new job in Baltimore at the end of the summer), so I headed to Audubon Park for a few spins before my research seminar. Continue reading
Today was the last day of the Patois Film Fest, so I hopped on my bike early and headed to Zeitgeist for a full afternoon of movies. It was a ridiculously pretty day, and it was a bit hard to swallow to go into the dark, but it was totally worth it. My favorite was the last film, Cafeteria Man, a movie about Tony Geraci and his fight to change the Baltimore city school system’s cafeterias. Continue reading
The weather was just about perfect today, though the wind would a bit slower and the temps a bit higher, if I had my druthers. It seemed like everybody was out today, and the traffic sure made it seem that way. I sped up St. Charles, beating the drivers headed to a home tour–I just don’t get the appeal of those–and the rest headed to Tulane for Crawfest and its 16,000 pounds of crawfish (or, as J. pointed out, two tons). I was feeling a bit crowd-averse, so I headed to Carrollton for lunch and the bookstore. By the time evening rolled around and I’d had my nap, I was ready for company. I pedaled to Mid-City to meet D., M., and S. We headed to Dupre Street to the new burrito speakeasy, “Burrito Juke Joint,” set up in the chef’s backyard. I snapped this photo of the early line as we waited for our orders. The line got longer and longer as the night progressed; we lingered, chatting with friends who had the same idea. The night ended with some porch sitting and some stoop sitting. I asked S., who is somewhat of an expert, if tonight’s backyard burritos resembled a juke joint in any way. Turns out, no. My curried chickpeas and potatoes with rice, cheese, and sour cream wasn’t really a burrito either, but tonight was just exactly what I needed. I rode home weaving through drunk prom traffic in the Quarter, glad to have a very different idea for the perfect night.
It was blustery today–New Orleans hill training–so I spent my commute playing with gears and working to stay upright. In commuting news, that abandoned vehicle is still there with its warning sticker, and I wouldn’t be surprised to pass it for many weeks. That deep pothole on the downtown side of St. Charles right before Napoleon is just getting deeper. Continue reading
Tonight’s ride took me over to Warren Easton High for tonight’s screening of In the Land of the Free as part of the Patois Film Festival. I was on for selling tickets, so I got there early and looked for a bike rack. I asked that kid with the trombone who was goofing around outside, waiting for his ride, if there were any bike racks. Continue reading
I woke up early to prep for class but ended up just fretting around needlessly. I headed to campus for a couple of good classes, the kind where you feel like you’re really just having a good conversation. Office hours and some needless fretting-turned organization later, I was back on the bike, pedaling to Mid-City for the opening night of the Patois Human Rights Film Festival at the New Orleans Museum of Art. I took this picture of the auditorium before crowds came in. It just looks so bare and empty, but it has certainly hosted a whole bunch of different kinds of events. Tonight’s movies were good, especially Hot Coffee, a movie about tort “reform” that was so good it made me cry. An hour before I was across the hall looking at Renaissance paintings and wonder why I’d never heard of Saint Cosmos before and why we can’t remember that the ones who provide free medical care for the poor are SAINTS. In between I went to the bathroom but had to use the other one, because that one was only for the people at that private party, the one with Arnie Fielkow and those women with that hair and those signature necklaces. Yeah, there was a lot going on at the museum. And then I got to ride my bicycle home on empty streets in cooler air. Nice.