@marklosangeles Hi, sorry you feel this way! We've heard that the level of detail we provide is helpful (so that people don't have to ask question after question to figure out exactly what we're talking about). Sure, some parts are referred to by numbers---but this is the kind of thing that helped me learn more about bikes when I was getting started, and made me confident enough to talk about bikes in a public forum. I don't know where you live or what your commute would look like, but I can promise you that you're not the only heavy sweater in the world. A few of them commute by bike! But, like, if you don't want to, then don't.
@LookUponMyWorks Test-ride a bunch of new bikes at a friendly bike shop, figure out what you like size- and style-wise (maybe you like flat bars instead of drops!), then do your best to find something similar on Craigslist.
@CubeRootOfPi Hi! Congratulations on getting on a bike. Actually wanting to ride for transportation is the first step. 1. I own my own floor pump. It makes my life easier. 1a. I have a "repair kit" that I generally carry with me, but it's cobbled together of stuff I know I want to use. You probably don't want to buy everything separately, in which case I think this is a pretty good place to start. You can upgrade as you see fit: http://www.bikesdirect.com/products/parts/assembly_kit.htm 2. Get to know your route when it's quiet---early on weekends, or during the day. If you're completely confident navigating, that will help. I don't know what city you live in, but your local bike-advocacy organization may offer something similar to my org's "city cycling" classes, which help people become more confident in traffic by actually taking them out in traffic. See if you can find a buddy to ride with. I can't tell you to take the lane enough. Get in the middle of the lane so that cars can't come within five feet of you on your side. If you're able to route around the non-quiet streets, it's worth doing so; once you're more confident with riding in traffic, you can take busier routes.
@notpollyanna Yay! Go you! Not helpful in the prescription-sunglasses category, but my preferred cheap sunglasses are Knockarounds.
I deleted my own comment? Shit. Anyway, Lululemon is cray and so are its Internet defenders. But I bought a pair of short-shorts there, like, five years ago (for full price) and I wear them to hot yoga three or four times a week. I also wear them to bike, to Crossfit, and on the rare occasion I go running. And as shorts to sleep in. They've held up to all that and to my building's really aggressive washers. They haven't pilled! Which is insane. I recently bought a similar pair of shorts from Gap Fit that fit better and were much cheaper. I am hoping they don't pill or stretch because if they do I will be forced to declare Lululemon's shorts superiority.
@KingCash Thank you! I was so proud of it (...still so proud of it). So far, all the declared candidates have a track record on the council of at least paying lip service to cyclists. I don't think bikes will be as divisive as they were in the last election (I really believe that! I'm not just saying that because my job is to normalize biking for transportation!).
@stuffisthings Mmmm, yeah, having a budget surplus is nice, but I do think biking is slowly getting more normalized here. My piece grossly understated the phenomenon that is Bikeshare because of when it was written. That's made a huge difference. Probably the most difference. And surplus or no, there will always, always, always be the people who are like, "Why are we spending money on THIS when we could be spending it on THAT?" even though reallocating funds from, like, education to transportation or vice-versa is not a thing that happens. See: streetcar. ETA: Terry Bellamy is also not the lightning rod Gabe Klein was, for better or worse.
@KingCash @stuffisthings That rhetoric is fading out (bikes vs. everything else can still get nasty, but for the most part electeds are like, "Uh, yeah, welp, the bikes, they're a thing") and was largely the province of Washington Post columnist Courtland Milloy to begin with, anyway. But I handily deconstructed all of that for you in August 2011 when I worked at City Paper (shameless self-plug for the only cover story I wrote while working as a copy editor :/)! http://www.washingtoncitypaper.com/articles/41367/the-symbolism-and-politics-of-bicycling-in-dc/ ETA: Full disclosure: I now work in bike advocacy.
@calzone As soon as I started reading this post, I was like, "Everyone needs to know about the wonder that is pregnancy test strips."