Politics, technology, and society. And the seasonal incursion of pro cycling.

Erik Gutshall for Arlington

As originally posted at Chris Slatt’s site:

June 9, 2016

Dear Fellow Cyclists,

The Tuesday, June 14th Democratic Primary has almost arrived! On that day, Arlington voters will pick their Democratic Party candidate for the County Board.

We are residents of Arlington. We ride bikes. We support Erik Gutshall for County Board.

Erik has a vision for Arlington as a place where riding a bike is a safe and comfortable transportation choice for everyone who wants to bike. Erik supports adopting a Vision Zero plan for Arlington, which calls for Arlington to eliminate death and serious injury from our roads through efforts to improve road design, education and policing. Erik supports Safe Routes to Schools, the program that encourages students to bike and walk to school, and he wants to see it expanded. Erik wants to see our police officers more engaged with the cycling community and utilizing bike patrols. And Erik wants to see Arlington earn the status of Gold Level Bicycle Friendly Community.

Arlington used to be a leader among local jurisdictions when it comes to supporting people who bicycle. Now neighboring jurisdictions are surpassing us in funding, facilities, maintenance and support. Erik wants to reestablish Arlington as a leader, and knows that we have the staff and resources to do it, if Arlington County’s political leadership has the will.

Erik recognizes that cycling is a fundamental part of our transportation network and should be treated as such. He recognizes that enabling more people to feel safe and comfortable biking is essential to moving more and more people as Arlington grows. You can read more about Erik’s position on cycling in Arlington here.

We ask you to join us in supporting Erik Gutshall for County Board in the Democratic primary on June 14th and again in November.Turnout in the primary is even more important than usual. There are two ways to vote in the primary: in person at your regular polling location from 6:00am – 7:00 pm on Tuesday, June 14th, or absentee in person at the Courthouse Plaza through Saturday, June 11th. Click here for more information on voting in the upcoming primary.

Working together we can help Erik win on June 14th!


Mark Blacknell
Gillian Burgess
Ed Fendley
Christopher Forinash
Eric Goodman
Megan Jones
Grant Mandsager
Steve Offutt
Chris Slatt

Now Now Now

That is not, as unsurprising as it will be to no one but me, a title based on Monkey #2’s most favorite phrase.  It’s actually a nod to Derek Sivers, and his Now Now Now project.

My online presence has been a long and storied one, with enormous reward (and not a little cost).  In the past couple/few years, I’ve drawn back, for both good and not so good reasons.  And I’ve recently realized that I’ve shortchanged the good.  So.  Trying to figure it out again.

So, with credit and appreciation to Sivers, here’s my now.

We’ll see how this goes.


Don’t even know where to start.  As good a place as any.



A Worthy Cover

Some takes are perfection, and ought not be insulted with further efforts. And while I still think the original is perfect, this effort is no insult:YouTube Preview Image


Nothing is Created or Destroyed - Everything is Transformed

Never Gets Old

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Midweek Makeover: Moves Like . . . *Who*!?

This is a one track entry:



(Okay, can’t help it. Here, here, and here. This is brilliant.)

Thank You, Scott Scudamore

Reading through Scott Scudamore‘s Facebook wall right now is an exercise in deep swings of emotion. Until you’ve experienced Scud in person, it’s not only hard to grasp just how outgoing and friendly he was, but to truly understand  how genuine his connections with other people were. The evidence, though, is in each and every one of those posts.

The first time I met Scott (2004?), I think he started off with a “Hey, I don’t mean to be a busybody, but . . . ” (and he totally did). It was at Wakefield, and he was coming over to dissuade me from riding the muddy trails. Since I’d actually just loaded my bike on the car because I’d *seen* the muddy trails, I was a little irritated at first. But Scott was waving me off of riding in such a friendly and positive way, I couldn’t help but finishing the encounter liking him.

Fast forward from there. Over the years the friendship developed, from chatting with him at MORE work days, to riding with him in Stokesville most Memorial Days, and – in the last couple of years – enjoying much longer conversations about community, aging, and making the time for important things.

While I (very much) regret not seeing him since his crash, I couldn’t ask for a better last conversation than the one we had over (many) beers at Stokesville this year. We talked about giving back instead of trying to take it with you, providing for those close to you, and the importance of making the best connections we can with other people while we’re alive.

Scud managed all of that in ways we should all aspire to, and he inspires me to live up to that.

He did that for me and many many many other people.  Well done, Scud.  Well done.


More about Scott Scudamore here.  Scott’s influence ranged well beyond his home in Virginia.  Since his injury I’ve seen heartfelt testimony about and appreciation of the man from the East Coast to Hawai’i.  From lifelong friends to people who he really connected with in the span of a race.

Midweek Makeover: Kicking Off Teenage Covers

So, a couple/few years ago?  The Undertones knocked out a nice little ditty:

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A little bit of pure rock fun, right?  So of course, it had to be covered.  And so Snow Patrol took the slow roll approach to it:

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And that wasn’t bad at all.  But Nouvelle Vague?  Sure, it’s kinda bossa nova lazy, but what they bring, it works:

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Midweek Makeover: Your Edition

So recently I revealed a not-so-secret-secret to a friend.  I actually enjoyed Moulin Rouge!.  I know, I know.  Shut up.  Anyway, one of the (many) great tracks from it was a cover of Elton John’s Your Song.  Which has to be, on its own, one of the best love songs of all time.  I know you’ve heard it, but seriously, press play:

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I’d normally put something that good on a shelf labeled “Do Not Cover.”  But then Ewan McGregor (!) did this:

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Knocked it out of the park.  (According to Nicole Kidman, too.)  So really, you’d think that it was done.  I mean, loads of covers out there, but no one’s going to top the original, and McGregor’s take staked out something so different that anything else would necessarily fall short.  But then:

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Not sure what it is about this one that works so well.  Obviously Goulding’s voice is something special.  But it’s more than that.  The arrangement, the voice, the pauses.  It’s a worthy addition.

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