I happened to ride a few miles with the 17 year old boyfriend of a friend's daughter. This kid was cool. He rides about 35 miles a day on his BMX bike with fat tires. Calvin's not a typical middle class student. He grew up in inner city Lansing, and as far as I can tell, he's had no parental guidance for at least the last 5 years. (My friend does seem to be a surrogate mother for him in some ways.) He's a dropout, but working toward his diploma in a correspondence course. He isn't working now, but wants to find a job and asked me for some leads.
One thing that amused me was that Calvin comes up with a lot of the same things we say on this forum, even though he hasn't had any contact with the carfree "movement". For example, he told me, "My bike is my car." Later he said, "It's good to have one less car on the road...and also one less teenage driver."
Riding and talking with this kid made me feel good about the future of carfree lifestyles. He said he's into cycling for the long haul, and asked me some questions about racing and touring. Do any of you know kids who make you feel good about the future?