Greater Greater Washington

Posts about Humor

Bicycling


Mickey on the Bikeshare

Mickey Martinez submitted this entertaining song. It's sung to the tune of "Charlie on the M.T.A.," the famous 1949 campaign song about Boston fare hikes and later popularized by the Kingston Trio in 1959.


Photo by Daquella manera on Flickr.
Let me tell you the story
Of a guy named Mickey
On a tragic and fateful day
Tossed his to-go mug in his backpack,
Kissed his cat and boyfriend,
Went to commute the Bikeshare way.

Mickey picked up his bike
At the Lamont Park station
And he pedaled to New York Ave.
When he got to the bike docks
He got 15 more minutes
Cuz there wasn't a spot to have.

CHORUS: Did he ever return,
No he never returned
And his fate is still unlearn'd
He may ride forever
On the streets of Washington
He's the man who never returned.

Now all day long
Mickey rides through DC's streets
saying "What will become of me?"
The app says there's a free spot
Up by the Cathedral
And another at UDC. (CHORUS)

Mickey's boyfriend goes down
To the Q Street bike lane
Every day at quarter past two.
At the corner of 14th
He hands Mickey a sandwich
As his bike goes wheeling on through. (CHORUS)

Now you bikers of Washington
Don't you think it's annoying
That you can search for a dock all day?
Join the Capital Bikeshare
Pay your 75 dollars
Get poor Mickey off that bike someday!

Or else he'll never return,
No he'll never return
And his fate will be unlearn'd
He may ride forever
On the streets of Washington
He's the man who never returned.

The other thing you can do to help get Mickey off the Bikeshare is to keep encouraging DDOT to expand the numbers of docks, bikes and stations. They're accepting comments at DDOT.Bikeshare@dc.gov, and there's a public meeting on expansion locations on Wednesday, May 25, 6-8 pm at 441 4th Street (One Judiciary Square), room 1107.

Transit


New streetcar brings gentrification fears to Lego City

Fifty years after they were first ripped out, streetcars returned to Lego City on Christmas Day. While they bring the promise of new jobs and increased mobility, fears of unwanted changes are building.


Photos by thecourtyard on Flickr.

"I know this is what you've been looking forward to," said Dan Reed's mom, newly-appointed director of the Lego City Department of Transportation, as the twenty-something graduate student assembled the bright blue tram. "Look at him playing with his toys."

The recently-opened Line 55, the first segment of a proposed citywide streetcar system, connects affluent Bricktown to Blocky Farm, a housing project in Southeast Lego City. Though they come every ten minutes, the seven-seat trolley is standing-room only throughout the day.

Nowhere are the effects of the new streetcar more evident than the Brick Street corridor, located near Lego City's main Public Transport Station. Since the trams started running Christmas Day, a skateboard shop, coffeehouse and gourmet pizzeria have opened.

Hip minifigures sip wine in sidewalk cafes as bright young toys on red bikes click by. Massive new condominiums built from Duplo blocks tower over the neighborhood's iconic, multi-colored rowhouses.

Ashley Lyman just moved to Brick Street and says her favorite part of the neighborhood is the activity. "I used to live in [suburban] Blockville and just sit in my big, pink house after dark," she says. "Here, there's always something happening! And I'm embarrassed to say it, but I hear [big box retailer] Blockmart is moving in and I can't wait."

Some established residents are frustrated by the changes, complaining that not every minifigure in Lego City benefits from them.

60-year-old Sarah Belk earned her nickname "the Mayor" for starting a neighborhood watch on Brick Street during the 1980's. "I've been a street sweeper, a doctor, and a pirate, but my taxes are so high, every brick I make goes right out the door again," she says. "What good is this new stuff for me? Lego City is trying to run us hard-working people out of here."

Henry Floyd, columnist for the Lego City Post and a resident of Brick Street, is opposed to the streetcar. He says the overhead arms and hands that power the tram ruins the area's "historic" viewsheds, but more importantly, that the entire project is a waste of money. "There are lots of ways to get around Lego City, but we can't all give them each their own lane," he says. "What's next? A lane for horses? For helicopters and boats and spaceships?"

"Kids in Lego City are being failed by our nonexistent public schools," he adds. "When is Dan's mom gonna buy him something useful, like a police station set?"

Some hope that minifigures on Brick Street will finally click the old and new together.

Local blogger Alex Block has lived there for five years, rehabbing old houses covered in childish crayon graffiti. "People like to focus on our differences," he says. "Some of us carry around giant phones. Some of us wear race car helmets. Some of us don't have eyebrows or noses. But we're all yellow and plastic on the inside."

Roads


Too that noticed I've

A recent xkcd comic is very appropriate:


Image from xkcd.

The 15th Street bike lanes, for example, have text that seems to read "PEDS BIKES TO YIELD TURN LEFT." (See this photo). Though I assume FHWA long ago did an analysis of which way was better for drivers, or maybe not.

page/2

Transit


Photo of the week: Yes, it is

Jeff Speck sent along this button from Sustainable Urbanism's Doug Farr.

page/2

Pedestrians


"The Tourist Lane"

Recently, a funny photo was going around showing a New York sidewalk partitioned into a lane for New Yorkers and a lane for tourists. It turns out this was the latest Improve Improv Everywhere prank. (Bossi)

IE members even pose as NYC DOT workers directing pedestrians and taking a "survey" of people's reactions to the pilot, with an eye toward expanding it to the entire city.

page/2

Transit


Not allowed in the L'Enfant City?

Jaime Fearer noticed an item for sale in Maryland that might violate a 122-year-old ban if used in the L'Enfant City and Georgetown:

page/2

Development


Animal sprawl

This week's Tom the Dancing Bug imagines if animals from the wild settled our habitats the way humans take over theirs.

Click on the comic to see the final panels.

page/2
Support Us

How can our region be greater?

DC Maryland Virginia Arlington Alexandria Montgomery Prince George's Fairfax Charles Prince William Loudoun Howard Anne Arundel Frederick Tysons Corner Baltimore Falls Church Fairfax City
CC BY-NC