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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 08-23-06, 11:47 AM   #1
Roody
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Gettin food--petrol-free and fun!

This time of year (arguably the nicest time of year in Michigan), I go carfree foraging a couple times a week. For example, on Monday I rode my bike out a few miles into the country and found a farmhouse with a produce stand in front of it. I bought a few pounds of tomatoes, a few ears of corn and a bouquet of fresh basil. I paid by "honor system," then I loaded them all into my backpack and headed home. Within a couple hours the tomatoes had been diced and cooked in olive oil with the basil, and the corn was lightly steamed. I grilled a tuna steak and poured some tomato sauce over it and the corn. That was one of the best meals of the year! Some of the tomato sauce went into tupperware containers to be frozen and enjoyed this coming winter.

Besides the freshness, the other good thing was that no fossil fuel was used in the production or transport of my food.
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Old 08-23-06, 12:02 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Roody
Besides the freshness, the other good thing was that no fossil fuel was used in the production or transport of my food.
how did you get the Tuna? to the best of my knowledge, there are no places you can bike to in Michigan to catch tuna. I could be wrong though.

But anyway, great job buying local produce.
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Old 08-23-06, 12:19 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by Curt Kurt
how did you get the Tuna? to the best of my knowledge, there are no places you can bike to in Michigan to catch tuna. I could be wrong though.

But anyway, great job buying local produce
.
You're right about that. Lots of fish in Michigan, but no tuna.

I don't like fishing myself, but I'm currently looking for a local fisherman who will sell me a mess of bluegills. I know I'll find somebody before long. A lot of people around here use their bikes to get to the fishing hole. One of my favorite rides takes me by two lakes, a stream and two rivers. In fall, the salmon and lake trout swim all the way up the Grand River (more than 100 miles) to spawn. I usually get at least one a year from friends, and that goes into the freezer for 10 or 12 future meals.
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Old 08-23-06, 01:45 PM   #4
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A bike is ideal for exploring and utilizing local resources.
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Old 08-23-06, 03:36 PM   #5
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We have a seafood store here run by a young asian man. He has family that lives along the Gulf Coast who fish for exotic fish and shrimp, then overnight it up to him - thank you FedEx. He goes to the airport every morning at the buttcrack of dawn to get the seafood then brings it straight to his store. It's all amazingly fresh - during this whole process he never freezes it, and has said that once or twice he has lost a shipment but will take that over freezing it.

Best part? He's moving into a new store that is no longer 8 miles away, but rather about two blocks away. I plan on going there throughout the week and purchasing my dinners. Fresh fish, specifically tuna steaks, is probably one of my favorite meals. To boot it's amazingly healthy.

Anyway, thanks for the inspiration. I need to do some grocery shopping tonight, and I'll be taking my bike for the first time. Here's hoping the north face pack is big enough
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Old 08-23-06, 06:30 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by Roody
Besides the freshness, the other good thing was that no fossil fuel was used in the production or transport of my food.
So the farmer did not use a tractor to plow, spray, weed, etc. his fields? The fisherman did not use a motorized boat to catch the tuna? Fertilizer and seed were not transported to the fields using trucks?

While your efforts to reduce the use of fossil fuels are commendable, to say that none were used in the production of your food is surely a bit of an exaggeration
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Old 08-23-06, 06:46 PM   #7
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Selling or purchasing bluegills in many states will land you either in jail or in receipt of a hefty fine. Bluegills have gamefish status and are rarely if ever permitted to be commercially fished. Selling or buying recreational catch is also, most often, prohibited.
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Old 08-23-06, 06:53 PM   #8
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Yeah... What supcom said. Let's just say petrol-reduced and call it a day.
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Old 08-24-06, 12:21 AM   #9
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Yeah... What supcom said. Let's just say petrol-reduced and call it a day.

Agreed.

Unless you plant it, grow it, harvest it yourself, and figure out a way to cook it without the use of electricity, you are still somehow tied into the big oil powered picture.....

We are all just part of a big machine, and its hard to accept that you can't just unplug from it no matter how hard you try.
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Old 08-25-06, 11:51 AM   #10
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I noticed, to my disappointment, that one grower used an old van to bring the produce from the garden to the market stand--a distance of about 100 feet.

I hope I don't buy any bluegills from undercover fish police. I'll be careful!

Quote:
Originally Posted by supcom
So the farmer did not use a tractor to plow, spray, weed, etc. his fields? The fisherman did not use a motorized boat to catch the tuna? Fertilizer and seed were not transported to the fields using trucks?

While your efforts to reduce the use of fossil fuels are commendable, to say that none were used in the production of your food is surely a bit of an exaggeration
This is about as close to carfree as I can get, and I think it's fantastic.

Not useful: Nitpicking and the criticism of others' efforts.

Useful: To dream up new ways of using less fossil fuel, and to then pass your ideas along to others.

If anybody has any constructive suggestions for food procurement that uses only a little fossil fuel, please pass them along.
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Old 08-25-06, 12:03 PM   #11
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Hens, lots of hens, and grow/fertilize your own stuff. If you know anyone with horses, that stuff is the ****.
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Old 08-25-06, 12:08 PM   #12
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Welllllllllllll if you want to be care free petrol lite then

grow your vegetables organically and by hand no tractors maybe a horse if you want then sell the vegetables for the benefit for the rest of the neighboor hood put up a wind mill in the back and sun panels in the back yard and make your own electricity if you want you could dam the stream and make a mini hydro power plant but that would disrupte the local habitat and eco system so you might want to ex that out and go with a water mill to make your electricity and then cook your food your going to have to grab your own fish to be petrol free so that means you will have to ride your bicycle to the exotic place you can grab the tuna but in the end on your trip out there you will some how consume something that takes petrol so basically saying it is almost impossible
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Old 08-25-06, 01:29 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ryanparrish
Welllllllllllll if you want to be care free petrol lite then

grow your vegetables organically and by hand no tractors maybe a horse if you want then sell the vegetables for the benefit for the rest of the neighboor hood put up a wind mill in the back and sun panels in the back yard and make your own electricity if you want you could dam the stream and make a mini hydro power plant but that would disrupte the local habitat and eco system so you might want to ex that out and go with a water mill to make your electricity and then cook your food your going to have to grab your own fish to be petrol free so that means you will have to ride your bicycle to the exotic place you can grab the tuna but in the end on your trip out there you will some how consume something that takes petrol so basically saying it is almost impossible
dude...take a breath man, i don't want to see you pass out on us
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Old 08-25-06, 01:58 PM   #14
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horses that eat directly off the owner's land are good on the low-fossil-fuel-use scale and not so good on the low-land-use scale.

If you want to avoid over-consuming resources generally instead of fossil fuels specifically i don't know what you'd think about horses.

To respond to the assertion that cooking with electricity requires fossil fuels-- maybe so but my power company (PECO) claims that your first 500 KWH per month of power (more than i use) will be produced by wind power if you pay them a few dollars a month extra for the privilege.
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Old 08-25-06, 04:05 PM   #15
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Yep and I bet they had to use oil to build that bicycle However I agree ANY reduction in the use of oil is a good thing. I have seen organic farms where everything was grown by hand, and others that used smaller power equipment. We do semi organic at our place, eventually it will be full organic. Our current soil sucks, it is a hardpan clay and almost sterile but with plenty of chicken manure and compost it will come around. I am angling towards a largish pond for some form of aquaculture. We are also planting **** seed (Canola) to provide biodiesel for my truck, tractor and electrical generator. Wheee retirement here I come

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Old 08-25-06, 09:45 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Roody
I noticed, to my disappointment, that one grower used an old van to bring the produce from the garden to the market stand--a distance of about 100 feet.

I hope I don't buy any bluegills from undercover fish police. I'll be careful!



This is about as close to carfree as I can get, and I think it's fantastic.

Not useful: Nitpicking and the criticism of others' efforts.

Useful: To dream up new ways of using less fossil fuel, and to then pass your ideas along to others.

If anybody has any constructive suggestions for food procurement that uses only a little fossil fuel, please pass them along.
I don't think ANYONE is criticising your efforts; your efforts are admirable (and sound really enjoyable, too...). It's your commentary. Hyperbole is easy to spot, and even easier to pounce on.
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Old 08-26-06, 12:10 PM   #17
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I don't think ANYONE is criticising your efforts; your efforts are admirable (and sound really enjoyable, too...). It's your commentary. Hyperbole is easy to spot, and even easier to pounce on.
If I've said it once, I've said it a billion times--I certainly am prone to exaggeration.
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