Keep That 9/11 Spirit Alive: Rent a Bicycle!
Post 9/11 blues? How do you bounce back from a weekend of such revelry? All the anticipation, the excitement, the furniture sales! Yes, it was quite the 9/11. But how do you keep that spirit alive? Perhaps with an election that will decide the fate of DC's white population? Or better yet, will a new bike-sharing program do the trick? Oh, either should make the terrorists very happy.
Introducing Capital Bikeshare: an alternative method of transportation for all the non-lazy slobs in DC. Say you want to get from point A to point B, but you don't feel like taking either of the perfectly viable methods of mass transportation that already exist in DC, the bus or the metro, because they may kill you. Well, thanks to the Capital Bikeshare program, you can now rent a bike and go joyriding all about the District (and Virginia too!) for a full 24-hours and you don't even have to return the bike to the same place you picked it up. Just don't lose the bike, or die -- you will be charged for either.
And this isn't some sort of hipster-gratifying bike-orgy either. These are real bikes with three speeds, internal hub gears, fenders, chain guards, lights, and front racks. Skinny jeans are optional.
To use the bikes you must first become a member -- basically so they can have your credit card information and be able to charge you if you don't return the bike on time/don't make it home alive. There are three membership options: one day ($5), 30 days ($25) or annual (the introductory membership offer is $50). One-day memberships can be purchased at kiosks; 30-day and annual memberships must be purchased online in advance. Once you're a member, the first 30 minutes of your ride are free. There's an additional fee for every 30 minute period thereafter.
True, bike sharing is a threat to one's personal freedom and that the program is part of larger plot to make DC just as Communist as Denver (the bikes are red after all). But the more important question is, do we really want a bunch of Commie-loving, freedom-abusing city folk who RARELY RIDE BIKES to be zipping up and down the streets of DC? Especially when helmets are not included/cannot be rented anywhere near the kiosks? Of course we do! Sharing is great! And biking helps the environment. Everything else is just details.
The program launches on Monday, September 20. Capital Bikeshare will be hosting a number of events over the next two months where they will be distributing coupons for a FREE 24-hour membership and the events will all be listed on their handy Facebook page. There is also a website, which you'll find in the usual place at the end of this post. [Capital Bikeshare]