Monday, June 27, 2011

I'd like to pull the tires off your car.

If you see a mom or a dad out braving the roads on bicycles with their children, please treat them as a group.  Please do not utilize your automobile to drive a physical wedge into that supposedly cherished institution known as the American family.  Adult bicyclists can be safely assumed to be individual units with individual responsibilities.  Parents bicycling with their children are shepherding them along a road that you and your evil cohorts make dangerous. 

The intersection of Bryant Street (aka Bicycle Boulevard) and University Ave, downtown Palo Alto.  The mother was poised at a red light with her two children, ages 9 and 7.  The light turned green.  She encouraged her nine year old forward with her voice and then started pedaling with the younger one by her side.  The only other car is coming from the opposite direction and wants to take a left, crossing in front of her.  The nine year old has put a small amount of distance between herself and her mother.  I can see the mother wanting to close the gap but she has the 7 year old who in the way of younger kids is still getting underway.  The car, determined not to miss out on even a quarter of a second continues to roll forward adding to the mother's anxiety.  The nine year old gets through the intersection and the car goes for it, cutting the mother and the 7 year old off from the older kid.  I can see the mother looking ahead and wanting to be near her kid. 

C'mon.  It's a long light.  Would it really have killed you to wait the additional three seconds for them to stay together?  If you wouldn't run forward and grab a toddler and yank her off her mother's arm and toss her two streets forward so that the mother can run forward and retrieve her kid as if she were an over-sized Golden Retriever....then you shouldn't separate a mother and child traveling together on bicycles.

Friday, June 24, 2011

...but I have only contempt for the beautiful godzilla's male counterpart aka the ugly booger boy

Young guys on bicycles get a free pass while Beautiful Godzillas get called out.  This just totally sucks of the worst kind of sexist bullshit.

The Beautiful Godzilla

  • physically attractive
  • does not wear helmet
  • fairly slow
  • bicycles up the wrong side of the road because she is naive/clueless
  • doe-eyed innocence personified
  • nice hair 
  • color coordinated to her bicycle(s)
  • does not need bicycle lights because she does not bicycle at night (possibly as no one can admire her when it's dark)
  • travels alone
  • smells like Aveda hair products
....contrast with.....

The Ugly Booger Boy

  • might have nice soft hair but impossible to tell as he has not washed it in a month.
  • does not wear helmet
  • blows snot out the side of his nose at unpredictable intervals
  • travels at high speed up the wrong side of the road screaming obscenities
  • practices bicycling with no hands weaving back and forth taking up entire road
  • sports more rear cleavage than any plumber
  • so much acne he needs a utility wagon to carry the excess
  • bicycles up the wrong side of the street at high speed at night with the expensive lights his parents bought him turned off.
  • his own bicycle got stolen when he left it at the local park for a week so he's "borrowed" his sister's ride 
  • plans to convert said sister's bicycle into a hawt "fixie"
  • travels in a pack of like-minded imbeciles.  
  • slow but impossible to get around because of the hail of snot and the taking up of entire road.
  • smells like a goat.

in praise of pretty and fashionable bicyclists

When I first read about the Beautiful Godzillas I knew exactly who Bike Snob was referring to, as I see a few of these young and proportionate females every day on my way in to the office.  I actually told one of them that she was the "best dressed bicyclist in Palo Alto."  She inclined her head in regal acknowledgement.  This Godzilla's bicycle was a delicate beige, her hair was long thick neatly trimmed and honey blond.  Her little fashionable slipper-like shoes coordinated nicely with her turquoise wheel set.  I have a theory that she has a stable of Townie bicycles that color coordinate with different outfits. 

Two days ago I was pedaling home from work, in a bike lane.  Up ahead I saw a young women on a small bicycle coming towards me, riding up the wrong side of the street.  She had what I think is called strawberry blond hair.  Her skin was a pale pink-gold, very pretty.  She did not directly acknowledge an ugly slob like myself but some faint tension around the wings of her tiny delicate nostrils made me think that she was concerned about my running her over.  Fortunately she was moving so slowly that I had a lot of time to consider the traffic to my left, find an opening, step out of the bicycle lane, and pass her safely. 

Today I headed in towards work and yet another young female rolled out into the road and headed down the hill towards Sharon Road.  She was nicely, her pants coordinating simply but effectively with her old model upright.  She had her bicycle helmet slung over her handlebars in case she ran into a situation that called for protection. 

The thing is, I feel fine about these bicyclists.  I've never had one come close to hitting me.  Sure it's not uncommon to see one riding up the wrong side of the road but they're never traveling very fast and they are definitely not out to make trouble, they're just a little naive.  If you have beautiful godzillas in your neighborhood (I prefer to think of them as The Pretties) you probably have a reasonably safe place to ride as they aren't a group who enjoys discomfort. 

What else do I like?  They give the guy bicyclists something to look at.  It's a sad situation out there for the guys.  Spandex covered girl roadies are so en-swathed in goggles and lycra and helmet that they might as well be male, also they are traveling so fast it's hard for the guys to get a good look at them.... and there aren't a lot of girl roadies to start with.  The Pretties, in contrast, coast gently along, never breaking a sweat, allowing for even the doughiest male to feel like Lance Armstrong. Their soft hair curls gently around their shoulders and without even trying (it seems) they give every male within a thirty mile radius something to pedal towards.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

you are not hip and you are not cool. also, your car smells bad.

Bryant Street is also known as Bicycle Boulevard.  It is blocked off at strategic points such that bicycles can traverse it's entire length but automobiles (in theory) cannot.  Where there are cross streets the cars have a stop sign and the bicycles have the right of way in all but three places.  The cars veer away from this unfriendly road and the bicycles yearn towards it's safety.  When there is road work we bicyclists pour around the warning signs refusing to allow ourselves to be detoured away from our safe passage.  So many of us are funneled towards this road where we feel confident that we see the same faces every day as we pedal towards our jobs and then pedal away from them.

I pay attention to the cars parked by the side of the road.  I'm always watching for which one has a person inside who might open a door into my face or who might abruptly start their car and turn into me with disastrous results.  The blue Mini with no rear bumper by the side of the road was easy to spot.  It's driver had a dense mass of heavy, matted, white-boy dreadlocks.  Dreds look pretty good on people whose forebears hail from Africa but they look bad on hipster assholes like this particular fellow.  When I think back I see a guy with a horsey face and poops dangling from his scalp.

I was pedaling along at a good clip but I could tell just from the way this ancient Mini barfed to life that if I were passing the car too close on the left I'd get run over as he pulled out.  I made room because I am smart like that.  The Mini jumped forward in a cloud of greasy smoke.

I watched with interest.  Poop-head was going pretty fast for someone who had about forty yards to travel before he encountered an obstacle, mainly a big metal post in the center of a very narrow bicycle-only road.  Bicycles travel on the left or the right depending on which way they are heading.  Cars do not fit.

The Mini slows and I brace for it to whip around and charge back towards me.  There is no turn and I realize things are going to be a little interesting.  Instead of turning Poop-locks rolls forward and positions his car to the right of the pole.  He must be figuring that an old model Mini is a pretty small car.  So small that it is effectively a bicycle.

He figures wrong.  The mini wedges between the curb and the metal pole and starts to make a squealing noise.  I'm reminded of Winnie the Pooh stuck in Rabbit's hole because he ate everything that wasn't nailed down and got too fat to make an exit.  I'm reminded (unpleasantly) of slaughter-house footage and pigs.

My route is completely blocked by a stinky Mini driven by a jackass with poop-like hair dangling from his head.  I bike on the left side of the pole (turns out there is plenty of room, I'd likely fit even with a tricycle) and then make way for the bicycle coming in the opposite direction.  This bicyclist is not wondering why I am on the wrong side.  He arches an eyebrow at the Mini and I shrug as if to say "there's no accounting for taste."  It is at this moment where the Mini manages to fight it's way free and lurch forward.  It continues on it's way up the street leaving only an evil-smelling brown pall in it's wake.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

why a blog when everyone knows that facebook is where it's at

1.  Because Facebook is lame.  There is no way I can work up a full blown complaint about anything in such a teensy window.
2.  Because I have all these thoughts as I pedal to and from work and some of them are...angry thoughts and writing about it feels great.
3.  None of my friends ride bicycles.  I love them but I need somewhere private to complain about all the mindless terror stories they send my way:  "Bicyclist cut into two pieces by large semi.  Photo attached.  Police unable to determine if bicyclist was wearing a helmet at the time as head has not yet been located." ...with a little note included saying "just your age!  And isn't this quite near where you ride?"**
4.  Because I have happy thoughts and since I don't know any bicyclists other than Contraption Captain (who has been very patient) I don't have anyone to tell who gets it.
5.  Because Bike Snob is very very awesome but he's totally wrong about mothers who bicycle and he's totally wrong about people who ride recumbent bicycles.***
6.  Did I mention that Facebook is incredibly lame?  My friends say "but it's so nice for staying in touch!"  Why stay in touch with what someone (who I barely know) ate for breakfast?  Let's not be sheeple people!

** I exaggerate.  A little.
***There's no reason to be scared of recumbists.  Anyone who rides a bicycle like that has a charming and well-developed sense of humor.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

more crazy scary old people

Yesterday evening the Contraption Captain and I were pedaling home together after our respective days in the office.  We were both solidly in the bike lane and riding close together so we could share our varied trials and tribulations. 

An intersection was a good ways ahead of us, far enough that we were not even considering red or green lights.  Car traffic to our left was heavy rush hour stuff.  We were passing cars on our left but I suddenly became aware that a car ahead of us had a wheel in the bike lane.  We got closer and instead if moving out of the bike lane they moved abruptly and scarily into the bike lane entirely.  I hit the brakes and yelled something. 

The car continues, half in the bike lane and half of it in the car lane and now it wants to pass (on the right) the cars in the car lane.  Not enough room.  It moves so far into the bike lane that the left side tires are screeching along the curb.  It's such a surprise and so unpredictable that it's terrifying. 

The driver just does not see us.  Or anyone else. 

I see that it is an elderly woman and I say something like "that's dangerous!  you're in the bike lane!  watch out! mental illness, dementia!" and finally "you're TOO OLD TO DRIVE"

I can smell the burnt rubber from the tire.  We get to the intersection with the other cars trying to get out of the way and Old Lady turns in to this place.

I got sympathy for elderly old people on fixed incomes trying to get to the food store.  At this place though?  It's time for Miss Daisy to hire herself a chauffeur. 

I went away for a nice vacation but now I'm back and (mostly) in a good mood

Vacation photos are boring (if they are not yours) and so I'll spare you.  The only salient piece from a bicyclists point of view is that this was the year that I went bicycling with both kids and no one was riding in a wagon or on an extracycle.  [insert long they grow up so fast blah blah blah]

How was it?

Pretty cool.  I chose routes for safety, preferring bike lanes and good pavement.  There were no close calls and I have no fresh bald spots, it felt great to be out like that, the three of us enjoying the California weather, enjoying the world we could reach with our pedals. 

We noodled around neighborhoods.  We biked downtown, chained up our rides, got ice cream, did some window-shopping and rode home.  On one occasion I locked up the 7 year old's bicycle by the side of the road towards the end of a long (steep) ride and carried her the rest of the way on the Extracycle.  Contraption Captain swung by with his own bicycle once he got off work and picked hers up.  Easy stuff.

It's always going to be scary having them out there but I love seeing them pedaling along in a car is not free of risk and life in a car is so...constrained.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

so, Chafed, don't YOU ever screw up? a matter of fact yes, I do.  I like to think I screw up somewhat less than I used to when I was younger and more impulsive but there's no objective data on the matter.

Incident #1 of.. probably quite a few depending on whether or not there is a statute of limitations on this stuff.

It is maybe two years back.  I was bicycling home from work.  I was a little distracted, how come?  Not sure.  Maybe something troubling had happened to the network I work on, maybe I was underslept maybe I was just randomly behaving like an idiot but for whatever reason I approached the traffic light outside of REI and it was green but as I got closer it turned yellow and then, well before I got to the light, it turned red.  Without giving the matter much (any) thought I bicycled right on through this red light.

There was a bicyclist who had been waiting for that light to turn green and was now waiting for an idiot bicyclist (that would be me) to get out of his way.  The guy gave me a look that clearly telegraphed "what the fuck are you DOING?"  I looked back and telegraphed "I have no fucking idea what I'm doing.  Sorry!"

So, to that guy?  I'm sorry.  I should have stopped and I still don't know why I ran that light.  I wasn't trying to screw with you.  I had no plan.  I'm generally pretty serious about red lights.  My brain just didn't engage enough with my eyes and my feet stayed overly engaged with the pedals.

To anyone who thinks that the above should make me write a blank check to those automobiles who continue driving along wen they hit a red light?  No way.  Those asshats risk turning a person into a thin puddle of grease on the pavement.  When I get distracted I just risk turning myself into a thin puddle of grease.  Lucky for me life (in this instance) went on.

the weather is incredible. you could be here too.

Californians are smug about their beautiful weather.  Having lived with weather that was consistent with the seventh ring of Hell I am not complacent.  Every amazing day is to be enjoyed.

Rest_Of_The_World "The sleet is coming down in giant sheets of Ragnarok Hell."

California "Lalalala....Tra-lala.  Shall I put gomasio or nutritional yeast on my sprouted brown rice today..."

Rest_Of_The_World "You won't be laughing when you all die in a massive earthquake!!"

California "Which affordable and delicious California red shall I enjoy today.  Hmmm....did you say something?"

Rest_Of_The_World  "The humidity is so heavy that my house is coated in a thick fur of mildew.  A mosquito carried away my Siberian Husky."

California "I will now watch the new Katy Perry video on my not-yet-released smart phone."

Rest_Of_The_World "You'll cry when that mudlside takes away your ugly ranch style house that you can't afford!"

Today was (yet another) beautiful day.  No clouds.  Deep blue sky.  No one gets skin cancer because we have special California electrolytes in the water..  and the bicycling is beautiful.

I'll take "What is annoying" Alex, for $200

Rich people who pester all their friends and co-workers for money so that they can bike 100 miles with a bunch of other people.  Maybe one person doing this would not be a big deal but as I mentioned, the bay area oozes money from it's pores so at any given moment anywhere between 2 and 12 people who drive Maseratis will be asking me for a donation so they can go for a long bicycle ride.

Look.  That's cool that you want to go for a long bike ride.  I love bicycling.  The charity?  Absolutely deserving --- so just give them the damn money and enjoy your bike ride, alright?

Biking is not some weird sad chore.
Being fit and getting strong is good for you.  I'm not going to pay you to do it, however.
Training for an event is terrific.
Going for a 100 mile bike ride is a lovely way to spend the day.

The charity rides I like are the ones where the bicyclist pays x dollars and then goes and does the ride and has a bunch of fun.  The charity gets some money.  The bicyclist gets a great ride and perhaps a nice tee shirt.  Don't do this thing of "I am going to go for a giant long bike ride to raise money for $worthycause.  You can help by sending money while I help by having a bunch of fun at your expense."

Important:  not everyone I know does this.  to those who donate some money to a cause important to them and then go bicycling?  Stay awesome.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

when they say "bike" lane they are not talking about you

Two days ago I am (wait for it) biking home from work.  Attentive readers will notice that pretty much everything that happens to me is on my way to work or the way home from work.  There is a lot of rush hour traffic which matters exactly zero to me because although there may be other bicycles in the bike lane it's never enough to really slow anything down.

I'm pedaling up Sand Hill Road, the most significant hill on my commute.  It has a traffic light partway to the top which is red but I'm pretty sure will turn green when I get closer so I'm working hard.  I notice a loud flubbering farting sound and a bad smell.  I glance in my rear view mirror and see a big fat motorcycle coming up the bike lane behind me.  "Bike" lane, get it?


I think it over and then down-shift and keep down-shifting.  Now with my tiny gears and my steep hill I'm pedaling like a monster but, you know how this goes, barely moving.  Light is still red.  Motorcycle is immediately behind me now.  Light turns green.

I dutifully pedal like my clips were burning my feet and continue my itsy bitsy teensy tiny crawl up the bike lane towards the green light.  The cars to my left (in the lane for motorized traffic) are moving forward and picking up speed and passing me.  The motorcyclist starts signalling that he wants to return to that lane now that it's moving but the cars aren't having any of it.  Awwwwwwww.

The motorcyclist kindof weaves back and forth behind me.  I consider whether it's worth my while to miss the light and decide "probably not" so when I am within a few feet of the light I shift up and start in at a normal pace.  The motorcyclist (still making loud farting and growling noises) passes me in a cloud of blue black smoke and then forces his way back in with the cars.

Friday, June 10, 2011

did you steal that car?

Early on in my commute there is an intersection by a Safeway that has a four-way stop.  As I approach it this morning, I see two cars approaching, one of whom gets to the 4-way before I do and stops and then I get there and come to a stop also. 

The car, a generic white sedan-thing hesitates, apparently wanting to offer me the chance to go first.   Why?  Because this is California and (some) people are nice.  The car behind the white car, a red Mini, leans on the horn.  HOOOOOOONK!  HONK!  HONK!  HONK!  HONNNNNNNNNNNNNK!  White car gives me a look and I wave as I try and communicate, "you should go, it's cool!"

The white car goes through the intersection.  Now it is definitely my turn.  The red Mini revs it's engine roooAARR! ....but hey, it's a Mini, and besides, it's my turn.  I go through the intersection. 

The red Mini steps on the gas and drives by me and then cuts in front of me and comes to a dead halt because despite all the drama it's a short piece of road that ends at a red light.  Hey whatever.  I don't care.  It's Friday and the weather is beautiful and I'm on my bicycle and I did nothing wrong.

On my right is the white car.  I glance over.  It's a guy who looks kindof like a Mormon.  Suit and all.  I look at the red Mini idling in front of me.  The woman behind the wheel is making rude gestures at the white car and snarky faces at her kid passenger.  It is now that I notice her license plate.  Wait for it...


HAHAHAHA!  That is so hot!  Joyous, get it!  Cause this car is so fucking filled with JOY!

The light is still red as a small Mini with an attitude.  I knock on the window of the white car.  Mormon rolls it down.  Looks a little worried.   Is this bicyclist coming after him too?  Probably doesn't help that I'm wearing the Daisy Dukes I decorated with fake fur. I point at the Mini's license plate and say "not so "joyous" today, mmm?"  and the guy's nervous face goes away and he's laughing also and together we laugh and the light turns green and we go through the intersection and the white car turns right and the red Mini and I turn left but then I don't know what happens as car traffic is bad and the Mini gets stuck at the next light whereas I head on through (no bike lane traffic) and continue on to work.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

ode to my Contraption Captain

O Contraption Captain.  When we were wondering how to get Sparkle Pony safely to soccer practice you welded foot pegs onto your giant recumbent bicycle and you zip-tied plastic covers over the wheels and she rode safely.

When your co-workers asked if your recumbent "could go up hills?" were polite.

Contraption Captain, one of my gears is...hey thanks!  My rear brake is, ah ok that's better.  And my front!  No, that would be everything I guess...

Contraption Captain, when it was too far to carry Rapunzel home from preschool on the bare Extracycle (that you assembled) you welded up a custom seat and sewed on a mesh back and installed a cushion.  When I said "but where can she put her snacks?" you added a basket and then I said "I'm not sure about her drink" so you added a bottle holder and it was Very Good.

Contraption Captain, when my wheel was squeaky and turned out to be defective you fixed it with a zip tie.

Contraption Captain, I love the way you sprint forward when a red light turns green and the roadies that shoaled you have not even clipped in before you are half a mile away.

Life with a Contraption Captain means never wondering what that faint humming noise is that emanates sporadically from every speaker in the house.  He's wielding a welder.  The shower of sparks is the angle grinder and the strange metal rods that the kids are playing with turn out to be test runs from the metal lathe. 

Happy birthday darling.  And thanks for everything.

the crocodiles among us

Contraption Captain, riding the red Tour Easy and pulling the Burley wagon dropped Rapunzel at school, stayed around for an end of year event, and then road off to work towing the (now empty) wagon.  At some point he ran over some bumpy road.  Next thing he notices a car pass him but then creep along just ahead, the driver craning her head around.  Contraption Captain gets a few looks because of his non-diamond frame bicycle so he doesn't initially pay this any mind. 

Then he notices something in his rear view mirror. 

He turns around in his seat and discovers that (almost miraculously) the wagon is no longer meekly following along on two wheels, instead it is riding along behind him, tilted high up on one wheel, neatly balanced.  Contraption is impressed but finally shakes his bike from side to side and the wagon crashes back down onto two wheels.  The watching car pauses a moment longer and then drives away.

For our next trick I'm going to get one of those extending leashes, like dog-owners use to give their dogs room and then pull them back in close.  We'll attach it to the Burley bike wagon.  Then in heavy traffic we can s l o w l y feed the wagon out and watch the reaction.

Maybe you think this is unfair and unnecessary baiting of the automobiles.  Au contraire mon ami!  Remember those old Crocodile Hunter shows featuring the late Steve Irwin?  He would make a point of creating interesting situations at feeding time for the captive crocodiles.  Sometimes he'd have a push lawn mower, sometimes he'd offer them food and then yank it away or make them jump for it or whatever.  The idea was that captive crocodiles got bored and fat and lost interest and ultimately stopped having sex with their wives if they didn't have to put some effort and thought into their lives.  By doing interesting things with our bicycles we can help the bored automobiles stay interested and engaged.  They'll focus more on the road, they'll feel more engaged at their work, their wives/husbands may get some and gosh it might even serve to stave off early on-set dementia. 

No need to thank us.  Just one of the many free services we bicyclists provide. 

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Pot. Meet Kettle.

I was on Charleston heading towards San Antonio and a green light and I was having a fantastic time considering I was on my way to work.

This is a busy intersection and there is no bicycle lane but when I hit it right (and I was hitting it right) I am right in there with the far right lane of cars and we are all charging forward to that green light but because there are a lot of cars the rate of acceleration is slow enough, and the top speed is reasonable enough, that a mediocre but eager bicyclist like myself can totally pace the metal behemoths through an intersection.  I had moved smoothly from 0mph at the previous red light to just about touching 20mph and I couldn't do better because there was a car immediately in front of me and one behind.

It's a bit exhilarating.

Then in the manner of a bicyclist who should be aware of her surroundings I took notice of something to my right where there was a strip of trees and then sidewalk.  It was another bicyclist riding up the sidewalk.  

I didn't need to check to see what is ahead.  I know this dangerous intersection like I know my shifters meaning, I don't have to think about it.  Ahead the sidewalk will end and a bicyclist charging up the sidewalk is going to need to take a hard left into traffic.  Traffic that is composed of a large number of accelerating automobiles.  

I look to see if sidewalk bicyclist is very very young.  He is not.

I check to see if sidewalk bicyclist is very very old and perhaps confused as to where normal adult bicyclists ride.  He looks to be thirty-something. 

The predictable happens.  He gets to the end of the sidewalk and without signalling careens into the road and in with the cars who break like nervous sheep and then force their way around him.  I pass him.  The old me might have said "Sidewalk, really?" but the new me keeps her mouth shut.  

He catches me at the next red light but doesn't shoal me.  Two points to Mr. Sidewalk.  

Together we cross the 101 on Rengstorff and head downhill.  I look forward and consider the road.  On my right is the right turn lane, this is what I want.  It has cars exiting the 101 who want to go right and other cars who are going to need to get over to the left so they can go straight or get over to the far left so they can go left.  The bike lane is for those going straight.  My goal will be to merge with the cars in the right hand turn lane.  

I see that this morning there is congestion, probably the traffic light is red and the cars are backed up.  The bike lane is blocked by a car waiting for a spot in the right hand turn lane.  The right hand turn lane is somewhat backed up.  I am signalling and heading downhill and when I see a good opening I fall into place and come to a stop, waiting with the cars for the light ahead to turn green.

Mr. Sidewalk passes me on my left.  I figure he is going straight.  He goes around the car that had crossed the bike lane and continues up the bike lane.  The traffic light turns green.  The cars in my lane twitch and start forward and then halt.  Up ahead I see that Mr. Sidewalk has gone straight as far as the intersection and then has cut in front of the cars and turned right after all.  

"Wow."  I think.  "What an asshole."

Since the best revenge is living well I turn it up once I have the chance and pass him (I think for the third time in one morning) and come to a stop at yet another red light (such is life.)  Mr. Sidewalk pulls up beside me.  

"That car blocking the bike lane.  It makes me so mad!"

I give Mr. Sidewalk a look that clearly telegraphs "The only language I speak is Basque."  It doesn't work.

"People who do that should get ticketed."

What I thought "People who bicycle like you should get busted back to training wheels."

What I said "Un-hunh."  

Then the light turned green and I put my annoyance into sprinting away at high beautiful speed.