Get to know D.C. with our daily newsletter
We dive deep on the day’s biggest story and share links to everything you need to know.
Gear Prudence: This past weekend I was at a local brewery when a dozen bikers showed up. They proceeded to drink a lot, were very loud, and then rode away. I overheard them say they were doing a ‘bike brewery crawl.’ This seems very irresponsible and I bet some of them were drunk biking. This is not the first time I’ve seen groups of bikers do this, by the way. Next time I see this kind of thing, I think I’m calling the cops for their own safety. I don’t have a question. I just wanted to warn them. —Bicyclists Endangered, Erroneously Riding
Dear BEER: Riding a bike to a brewery (or few) is a popular weekend activity, especially in the summer, when cool suds provide a crisp, refreshing quench after a little pedaling. Some establishments, especially those close to recreational trails, will even advertise their presence in the hope of luring passing bicyclists to taste their wares. And that’s great! Bikes are fun, beer is delicious, etc. But overdoing it—whether you arrive by bike, car, pogo stick, or any conveyance that you pilot yourself—and setting off inebriated is both illegal and ill-advised. Bicyclists, especially in the heat, should be mindful of the effects of alcohol in light of potential dehydration and caloric deficit. There’s nothing wrong with a bike brewery crawl per se, but moderation is paramount. —GP
Gear Prudence: If by chance I’m out on foot and meet up with a lady and she has her bicycle with her, am I then obligated to walk her bike for her? You know, the gentleman thing—I carry her bags when they’re heavy, hold doors etc. But this is her bike, her machine. Maybe she doesn’t even want me touching it and would be insulted if I offered. Are there any guidelines here? —Guidance On Operating Deftly, Gentleman Understands Yielding
Dear GOODGUY: Oh, a chivalry question. Great. GP is torn here: Generally speaking, codified rules dictating the interactions between men and women seem more laughably old-fashioned than a penny-farthing or a waxed handlebar mustache. On the other hand, being a decent, obliging, and conscientious companion never really goes out of style. When it comes to bicycles, the safest bet is to assume that the person who rode the bike is more than capable of managing it after she dismounts. If it looks to be getting cumbersome, you can politely ask if you can be of any assistance, but you should never assume that someone else needs or wants help pushing her own bike, and snatching it from her without her express permission in an effort to “help” should get you a u-lock to the noggin. You can certainly help in other ways, especially with opening doors, which are always tricky when lugging a bike. But the bike is off limits unless you’re told otherwise. —GP