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Living Car Free Do you live car free or car light? Do you prefer to use alternative transportation (bicycles, walking, other human-powered or public transportation) for everyday activities whenever possible? Discuss your lifestyle here.

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Old 08-04-06, 08:19 PM   #1
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I think I struck out w/ the family

So, I went to the caribbean with the family, my brother was getting married.
I was wearing my "ride your bicycle" t-shirt, and my future sister in-law asked me about it. I told her I support cycling as a form of serious transportation, and told her my reasons why I don't drive by choice, etc. She kinda looks at me, tells me she like harleys, then the ol' akward silence. Strike one.
Later that week, i'm talking with his best man and his wife. We get into a conversation about grocery shopping, and they tell me that they're oh so close to the stores. Now, I know where they live, because I used to live in the same neighbourhood, in the same city. They are literally across the street from EVERYTHING. Supermarket, hair salon, drycleaning, I mean there is everything there. I tell them I use my backpack, and that a triler is in the works for the future. He tells me "that's kinda dumb, why wouldn't you just drive?" sigh...strike two.
Then, at the Toronto airport, my dad is reading the newspaper, and sees a car ad. He asks me if that particular car was any good. (I think it was a Cobalt or something) I explain to him that asking me that is like asking a vegeterian what's the best kind of prime rib or something. As in, I have no idea. He knows that I don't drive, Have no intention to, and have absolutely no info on car models. WE ended up having a pretty good discussion about cars vs. bikes vs. pretty much everything else. I don't think I'll get him to give up his TWO diesel trucks though. Oh well, I know what I stand for, and at least all my family know it too. My brother even told me he took up riding a few months back in the spring. That was good to hear
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Old 08-04-06, 08:46 PM   #2
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You may not have gotten anybody on a bike, but you're still the good will ambassador.

Everybody you talked to now knows somebody who rides a bike, and that's a good thing-- it humanizes cyclists, and makes it less likely that these people will engage in hostile acts against cyclists they see on the road.
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Old 08-04-06, 10:20 PM   #3
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my social environment is very similar . . . it gets disheartening (as you may know) . . . but, I keep on spinning.

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Old 08-04-06, 10:54 PM   #4
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As a three time loser I know
who is doing time in San Quentin
once said. (Don't ask me how I
know him.)

"F**k em if they can't take a joke!"
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Old 08-05-06, 02:40 AM   #5
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It was a good effort. Sometimes all it takes is time and exposure and they wiil come around. Just continue to lead by example.
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Old 08-05-06, 03:30 AM   #6
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You were talking about concepts they've never heard before. It doesn't make sense to them.

Now that you've raised the subject they may start to understand that there's more than one way to live. (Or maybe not. )
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Old 08-05-06, 03:35 AM   #7
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How do children learn?
By watching what mommy and daddy do.
Adults are not any different.
What one sees you doing
They will likely try doing for themselves.
If many people are seen doing the same thing
Than it's practically guaranteed that others will follow


This is the real government.
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Cause the more cyclists notice me the more I Love myself.
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Old 08-05-06, 11:08 AM   #8
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Quote:
"that's kinda dumb, why wouldn't you just drive?"
I think a good answer to that would be, "i would be happy to tell you about several reasons".
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Old 08-05-06, 11:25 AM   #9
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You might be carfree for some very patriotic reasons, but some people will still think you're some kind of commie subversive. This country has a really screwed up attitude towards cars and oil. I'm sure you'll keep doing what you think is right, even if nobody else ever gets it.
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Old 08-05-06, 12:05 PM   #10
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Well, my family is pretty cool with it. I mean, they're admitted 'hillbillies', as my mom says. They've just been around cars & trucks all their lives,(we grew up on farms & tiny towns)and none of them really know how to ride a bike. My sister actually said she would try to ride to work, but she's scared to death of the traffic. I told her to come fly out to me, and I would train her on proper riding, being seen(lights, lights, LIGHTS!) and basically just how to move through traffic. I never know, I might have 2 family members who ride now...
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Old 08-05-06, 04:15 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sunofsand
How do children learn?
By watching what mommy and daddy do.
Adults are not any different.
What one sees you doing
They will likely try doing for themselves.
If many people are seen doing the same thing
Than it's practically guaranteed that others will follow


This is the real government.
Nice. I couldn't have said it better myself.

I generally try to avoid conversations with pointed questions about my transportation cycling.
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Old 08-06-06, 10:16 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wageslaveonbike
It was a good effort. Sometimes all it takes is time and exposure and they wiil come around. Just continue to lead by example.
Ditto many times over. Just keep on keeping on , mate. Now you're on the
leading edge of change which gets kinda lonely at times.
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Steel: nearly a thousand years of metallurgical development
Aluminum: barely a hundred, which one would you rather have under your butt at 30mph?
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Old 08-07-06, 06:49 AM   #13
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That's how I started commuting. The original commuter who inspired me has moved on, and I've taken his place, but maybe others will follow my lead.



Quote:
Originally Posted by sunofsand
How do children learn?
By watching what mommy and daddy do.
Adults are not any different.
What one sees you doing
They will likely try doing for themselves.
If many people are seen doing the same thing
Than it's practically guaranteed that others will follow


This is the real government.
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Old 08-07-06, 08:11 AM   #14
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Yep...same with me. When you set a good example, you likely have no idea how many folks you will inspire along the way.
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Old 08-18-06, 10:32 AM   #15
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Here's my approach:

I try to show by example that owning a car is not always necessary. I never preach or proselytize. I avoid asking for rides more than most car owners do. I never mention being car-free unless someone asks me about it. I don't act like I'm better than car owners. I always bring a change of clothes and try to show up places looking presentable.

Basically, my goal is to prove, using actions and behavior only that being car-less is not difficult. Occasionally people even get interested and ask me advice. I don't think they'd do this if I was running my mouth about it all the time.

If I "strike out" with someon, I don't let it bother me.
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