Living Car Free - How do cagers do it?
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I had a friend take me around town today. He was home from San Fransisco and rented a car. We went to lunch, and the museum, it was a fun day, but the moments in the car were strange. I haven't been in a vehicle in (I can't remember when) some time. My van is still stitting. I ride a bike everywhere I go, or walk. It just has me baffled for a lot of reasons. I brought them up with my friend, as he was once my roommate, and got me started living car free, or at least willing to look at commuting by bike more often, as he does it and did it when he lived here. I think he still does in SF.
My landlord can't drive cause he got caught on film rolling through a stop light, his fourth moving violation, so he can't drive. I just was looking around me and asking why. Almost all the vehicles had one maybe two people, there were buses half full and one or two bikers. It just looked wrong, I felt suffocated in traffic, not to mention the vehicle with a seat belt and a hidden air bag in the dash. It was interesting to be aware of this sense or vibe, and wonder how do they do it, with a conscience?
11-23-05, 10:51 PM
There are a lot of intelligent, thoughtful, conscientious people out there. That being said, I typically have the possibly misanthropic view that most people just aren't. Aren't that intelligent, and don't put much thought into their actions, small and large. So many behaviors have been ingrained into us from birth or shortly thereafter that it takes some lateral thinking, or something/one "radical" to bump one out of the typical worldview.
Also, people are lazy, etc etc.
11-24-05, 02:00 AM
i find that train of thinking to be a really great way to ride safely. pretend all the drivers have it out for you. is that what you were getting at, attercoppe?
as far as how they do it...i dunno. i get in a car sometimes to visit my parents about 25 miles away. i could ride, but i don't like the high speed limits and plethora of suv's and "i have a tiny weiner" pickups/monster trucks in their area. so i get in a car and....it feels weird. no wind on my face, or going past my ears. and so isolated form anything going on outside and around the car. and...i don't know. every time i get in a car, i remember why i like the term cager...it feels like a cage on four wheels.
11-24-05, 03:01 PM
pretend all the drivers have it out for you. is that what you were getting at, attercoppe?
Not really where I was going, but that's a good point. Even in a pretty bike-friendly town like mine, I always assume that nobody sees me, and if they did wouldn't care if they cut me off or otherwise inconvenienced me. In a tie at a stop sign, or even if I get there a little ahead, I always wave the car on first. I figure they might remember me next time if I waved them ahead instead of them feeling like they had to wait on me to get going and then pass me anyway (if we end up going the same direction). I consider it doing my part to keep the locals friendly to bicyclists, especially since there are so many tourists around during the summer, many on bikes and not necessarily following the rules. I want to be recognized as a local and as a biker who follows the rules of the road and is easy to share the road with. Hopefully that will cause drivers to reciprocate and make me a little safer.
I think you're getting a bit carried away here. I mean, I dislike car culture and I would be happy if they all went away tomorrow, but... Sometimes they CAN be fun. When I was a teenager in the hellish state of Texas, it was the one place you could call your own. I could crank the tunes up nice and loud. It was also a convenient place to have sex (although a little cramped). And all those long road trips in the west, heading out into the mountains or desert to go climbing or mountain biking: mucho fun.
Still, I hear ya. I walked to the top of the nearest hill yesterday and saw all the cars stopped out on the highway and I said to myself, self, I am never going to commute by car again no matter how much money i could make that way. It just isn't worth it. Heck, that's a big part of the reason I haven't been trying to revive my engineering career - all the jobs are spread out in the suburbs. 'Course that ain't the only reason, cubicles and computers having even more to do with it.
11-24-05, 08:09 PM
sure, i see how cars are handy (i know the sex and bikes thing has been gone over before, but i still maintain it'd take a lot of talent to actually undertake that on a bike.), but as far as cost...if i purchased one, maintained when necessary and paid insurance for something i'd use for, oh....a few hours every few months, it'd be a huge waste of money and time (gotta make the money).
portland has a program with car rentals that's really nice, and that'd be a great thing (that'll never catch on) to solve the car problem--have a bank of cars for people draw on in the rare occasion one is necessary. though a lot of people seem to think that's pretty often.
Ever see the photos of the racers taking a leak while riding?
11-25-05, 12:50 AM
the relaxation it takes to pee and the relaxation it takes for.....other activites is completely different. Sometimes I have trouble peeing while riding, I wouldn't even try to undertake the other.
You pee while riding? I don't mean stopping the bike, I mean going while still moving. You need a few helpers to hold it(the bike).
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