#5321 – man about town

i went for another run on tuesday. same route (well, close to it anyway – i found a shortcut where the trail goes under an overpass by the catholic university station so i don’t have to go up and around and cross streets and wait at traffic lights just to get to the trail), same everything. the only major differences this time were that i wore my glasses, and that i used my iphone and its nike+ gps app to track my run.

usually when i go for a run, i use my ipod nano and the nike+ attachment. the benefit of this setup is that i’m not stressing about carrying around my phone while i’m out and about, but it’s not as accurate – it senses how much time your feet are in the air vs. on the ground, and it can use that to get a rough idea (once you calibrate it) of how far you’ve run. the iphone app uses the actual gps tracking to track your distance, but it then can also show you on a map exactly where you ran, and afterwards i found that it was able to also show me on that map how my speeds compared to elsewhere on my run – places on the route where i ran faster were in bright green, and places where i ran slower were in red.

i ended up running farther than i ran the previous time… this time i ran until i reached a staircase that went down to M street (if i remember correctly), and just as i reached the bottom of the stairs these two guys and a girl jogged up to me and up the staircase, so i just turned around and followed them part of the way back home until they turned off somewhere else. altogether i ran 6.89 miles on tuesday, and i’m kind of glad i’ve been busy in the days after so i don’t feel so bad about not running. my chest muscles feel a little bruised up after that, heh.

just when i thought my woes with the DMV were over, i woke up on wednesday to go to work and found a ticket on my car for failing to display an inspection sticker. i got my car inspected back in august, but i believed that the sticker they put on my windshield was only a 30-day temporary sticker and that my actual registration sticker served as my inspection sticker as well. i guess that’s not the case. 😛 so, $50 fine, + $10 replacement sticker. i might try to get to the inspection station early tomorrow morning just so i won’t have to waste time on saturday waiting in the queue, and hopefully they won’t tow my car overnight or anything. 😛 the ticket said “TOW REQ: YES”, so i’m guessing that means either “tow requested” or “tow required”. ugh. it’s ridiculous all the hoops that you have to jump through just to drive a car. i can either just pay the fine, protest the fine, or admit that i was at fault but with an explanation and see if they’ll reduce the fine. i’m tempted to admit with explanation since i’m pretty sure i just got some temporary sticker and that i removed it because i got my car registered, but i could just be hallucinating things.

wednesday night i went to the baltimore city paper’s “best of baltimore” party with festive. i had asked cynicalscribe if any of the charm city roller girls would be interested in going since i got the invitation to the party on account of the paper using a photo of mine from a derby bout, but nobody took me up on the offer by tuesday night. not long after i filled michelle in on the party details one of the roller girls asked if i still needed someone to go with me, and then wednesday while i was at work i got an email from another girl asking if i still needed someone. you snooze, you lose.

for all the fuss the city paper went through with sending me these pens as invitations (yes, they mailed me two pens and the pens themselves said “this pen = your invitation to the city paper ‘best of baltimore’ party”, and then their venue changed so they sent me two new pens with the new venue information), they never really looked at our pens or anything – we pretty much just waltzed in. open bar, dancing, but no food. one of the former rollergirls (“MIA POW”) happened to be there with her ex (who happens to be one of my fraternity brothers), so we talked with them and a friend of hers and his date for much of the night. at one point michelle and i wandered around the dance floor to see what was around and i chatted with / was flyered by one of the players for baltimore charm, one of the teams on the lingerie football league.

at one point it was a little awkward – MIA POW was telling her friend how “[my] girlfriend skates on the charm city roller girls” and mentioned carrie a few other times as “[my] girlfriend”, so then later michelle said to me that i should probably set her straight. later on she asked me how carrie was doing so i said “well, actually…” and filled her in. she felt bad since she didn’t know that we had broken up, but i wasn’t about to hold it against her or anything. apparently she had also asked her friend about his wife and he said how they had broken up, so she wasn’t really doing so well with keeping her foot out of her mouth, heh. later on she asked me for more details and inquired as to how i was doing, and gave me a hug and said how much i’m well-liked, respected and adored by so many people on the league. it helps to hear that people care about me since a lot of the time i find i end up tearing myself down, “woe is me”, etc., etc.

today there were five different things for me to choose from after work, but they were all pretty much happening at the exact same time, and i wasn’t sure what i’d do. birthday party, opera, book release / signing, bike ride, trivia night. i ended up being able to do two (well one and a half) of them. first i went down to this park by the navy yard and nationals park for the capital bikeshare birthday party. capital bikeshare is a bike-rental system where you can either rent bicycles for 24 hours ($5), 1 week ($15), all the way up to 1 year ($75); once you pay your rental fee, you can rent as many bikes during that period as you’d like, and the first 30 minutes of each rental is free while additional increments start at only something like $1.50 for 30 minutes and increases from there.

well, since it was their 1-year anniversary, and they actually hit 1,000,000 total rides on their actual birthday earlier this week, i figured i’d go to the party to see what free swag i could get. they gave out t-shirts to the first 1000 visitors, and i also got free bicycle lights from bike anacostia (hooray! now i don’t have to buy a set!), a water bottle from whole foods, a yo-yo from google, a bicycle map, and a few other tchotchkes. i wish someone gave out bags since i had to try to juggle all my stuff inside my bicycle helmet (i brought it along in case i thought i might rent a bike for the way home), and let me tell you that navigating a porta-potty in the dark while trying not to spill the contents of your helmet is quite a feat. they also gave out some awards to a few people, including the one guy who’s had the most number of trips on capital bikeshare over the past year – 1,258 rentals!

they had some food trucks (i thought about getting poutine from one of the trucks but i ate just before i left my apartment), and new belgium brewery was selling beer since they just started distributing in the district. they did a big announcement how they’re expanding with another 24(?) stations by the end of this year, and adding another 50 additional stations early in 2012. i hope they add some near my place, it’s about a 15-20 minute walk to the closest station, and it sure would be nice to just hop a bike and ride it to the metro station.

they also had some fun and games. they had an 80s cover band perform, moon bounces for kids, and for the adults they had a paperboy contest – you had to ride a bike on a specified path and toss newspapers into five different bins, and if you got papers in all five bins then you won a starbucks gift card. i unfortunately only got 1 in, and i realized too late that i threw one or more papers at things that weren’t the bins i was supposed to aim for (i just saw random boxes along the route and figured those were the targets), so i guess beer + bike riding + hand-eye coordination don’t mix, haha. they also had a “slow bike” race, where the person who could ride a bike on a trail the slowest without falling over or putting their feet down would win. i didn’t enter that one, haha.

at one point when i was in line for the paperboy contest, one guy who was there recognized me from when i went to an after-hours party at the hirshhorn museum earlier this year. i barely recognized him and i wouldn’t have remembered if he didn’t mention the hirshhorn after hours event. that was a little creepy.

near the end of the party a group of bicyclists out on the thursday night social ride from bicyclespace came by. i wasn’t sure but i thought i might have seen this girl i was out on a date with before, but whatever, she wasn’t interested in me. i was more interested in this girl that was dancing and chatting with her friends near me while i was dancing, and we looked at each other a few times, but that was it. once the party was over i wandered around the park since i had never been there before, and it was really nice – i should go down there again sometime.

on the walk back to the metro i heard opera music, so i figured that one of the first things i had planned to do was still going on. once a year, the kennedy center does “opera in the outfield”, a simulcast of their opera performance for free at nationals park. i wandered in and caught half of act 2 and all of act 3 of “tosca”… originally i was sitting in the bleachers, and thought that the end of act 2 was the end of the show, but they said that act 3 was coming up so i ended up moving down to the outfield and sat in the grass. it’s not every day you get a chance to sit on the grass outfield of a major league ballpark and watch opera on the jumbotron, and then at the end of the show see the cast and placido domingo come out from behind the curtain, take a bow, and put on washington nationals hats. it was a good performance too. i’ve never really seen opera, at least nothing other than gilbert and sullivan performances.

took the metro back home around 11 or so, and here i am.

tomorrow night i might go to see a free film about new york city in the late 70s / early 80s at the corcoran art museum. looks pretty interesting! then saturday i might get a haircut, might have to get my car re-inspected, might go barhopping (but then again i wasn’t too impressed with fat tire, so probably not), and might go see a midnight movie sometime this weekend. who knows?