Seafood For Sale at Louisiana & Baronne

First, it’s amazing what a day off the bike and a freshly-lubed chain can do for your ride. I was happy to get on the bike and stretch out for a surprisingly mild commute to work, but strangely, I forgot my helmet. My helmet! I know there’s a debate about helmets, but I wear one, and I felt positively naked without it. I didn’t have time to go back home to pick it up, but after almost being cut off by an errant parker on St. Charles, I stopped at home to put it on before my evening ride to the gym. Tonight riding felt like flying, and it was good. Continue reading

Davis Bayou in the Gulf Islands National Seashore

It’s still the holidays, I think, so today I tossed the Surly in the back of my car, grabbed my National Parks Passport, and headed to Mississippi to get a cancellation stamp from Davis Bayou, part of the Gulf Islands National Seashore. The gulf shoreline along scenic highway 90 looks a lot different than it did this time last year. It’s still eerily quiet and relatively empty, but now there are roving bands of workers in matching t-shirts and reflective vests carrying clear trash bags, raking through the sand, hunting for oil. Continue reading

Flotilla Emergency Protest at Conti and N. Peters

The sun was out and I had the day off and my old friend S. was in town for a visit and I’ve got extra bikes–perfection. I took the Surly and he took the Specialized, and we headed out on a tour of my favorite asphalt in New Orleans: Simon Bolivar, the new and improved Loyola, Canal, Chartres, those three blocks of Magazine by the WWII museum, and Constance. We do have some good streets in town–you just have to ride around until you find them (or check out the fantastic work by NOLACycle–thanks for the maps!). On our way we made some stops, the first for the Flotilla Emergency Protest in support of Palestine. Continue reading

Train and Graffiti at Chartres and Lesseps

I woke up this morning hoping the rain would stay at bay for just one afternoon so I could get a real ride in. I wrote my daily words by 10am, stopped by the bike shoppe for cleats for my new bike sandals, and headed to class. The thunder started, but no rain. Until, of course, I was heading home. I managed to avoid a downpour until I headed back out to meet friends for lunch. Continue reading

Streetlight on St. Claude Between Barracks and Gov. Nicholls

It’s termite season in New Orleans. Sigh. This town has more “seasons” than you can imagine, especially for a place where it’s pretty much just a variation on hot and humid all year round. We’ve got the good seasons: king cake, crawfish, creole tomato. And there are the bad ones: stinging caterpillar (!), termite, and, unfortunately, hurricane. Continue reading

People and Signs at the Oil Protest in Jackson Square

I broke one of my regular riding rules today–never start a ride in the rain. But I needed to get to the Quarter for today’s oil protest, and I most certainly wasn’t going to drive a car down there. I was soaked and muddy by the time I got there, but a quick towel-off at a friend’s house, and I was good to go. Continue reading

Rally for the Gulf Coast at Jackson Square

Man, I was sore today! I played racquetball yesterday. I’ve never played before. I spend an hour or two riding my bike, but there’s no lateral movement at all in biking. There’s a lot of lateral movement in racquetball. I am entering a new world of crosstraining. Anyway. I took the bike out for a very slow ride up to campus to do some research and then headed downtown for a rally. Continue reading

Ship Passing Under the Crescent City Connection

I woke up to a spectacular rainstorm this morning. I moved my car just in time (sort of) and lay about in my apartment listening to the drops pelting my tin roof. It was all very nice and such, but it rained all day yesterday, too, and I needed it slow up so I could ride my bike. I mean, two days without riding in a whole week? I get too itchy too fast for that sort of thing. And New Orleans weather changed it up just in time, as it sometimes does. I hopped on the Surly and headed downtown to the bike shoppe to drop her off for a check up and rode off on a cute little Schwinn rental to check out the scene by the river. Continue reading

Crawfish Boil at Fulton Square

I had a busy day of grading and errand-ing, so when 6:00 rolled around, I was happy to toss off the day and get on the Surly to head down to the Quarter for preview night of Grey Gardens at Le Petit Theatre. (I usher as a volunteer in exchange for a free seat–best game in town, folks.) It’s that time of year, though, when there’s always something going on. Continue reading

Jasmine On a Brick Wall at Governor Nicholls and Chartres

Oh, it’s muggy out there–the kind of muggy that means my glasses fog up when I step out of air conditioned buildings, or even when I’m just breathing a little hard from pedaling fast. I headed out on the Surly to check out Jazz Fest crowds and also to get away from news coverage of the river of oil gushing in the Gulf. Continue reading