Sunday, December 30 2007 @ 07:47 PM EST
Contributed by: B' Spokes
By GREG HITT, Wall Street Journal
WASHINGTON -- A little after 6:00 one morning, Earl Blumenauer emerged from his Capitol Hill row house. The temperature hovered near 40 degrees and it was really raining. The Oregon congressman hopped on his rust-colored Trek Portland, an aluminum-frame bicycle with a carbon front fork designed to absorb road shock, and pedaled to his office.
Though he was alone on the road, and despite the downpour, he stopped at every red traffic signal. At one odd-shaped intersection, Mr. Blumenauer mused aloud about all the streets jutting off at odd angles. Perfect for a traffic circle, he suggested.
Later that morning, House Minority Leader John Boehner, the Ohio Republican, was incredulous that anyone had been out in such weather. "Are you out of your mind?" he asked.
Some members of Congress come to Washington and get in the fast lane. The 59-year-old Mr. Blumenauer came to Washington and got in the bike lane. Few members of Congress care more than he does about cranks and sprockets.