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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 01-26-11, 02:42 PM   #1
nostalgic
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I've landed a job! BUT...

I'm scared! I'm in Phoenix, AZ. I've landed a job as a lead tutor, and I KNOW I can do the job. But the people who hired me don't know that I am car-free. There is a subtle prejudice that runs through this city about people who are seen coming to work in anything other than a car. I've been car-free for over nine months, and now I get a good job, and I'm freaking out.

I've been thinking about buying an electric bicycle, or converting my cruiser to an electric bicycle. But at this point, I don't know if I should do that, or if I should buy a moped and get it registered, licensed and insured. I'd have to take riding lessons for the moped too, I'm sure.

Any ideas?
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Old 01-26-11, 02:52 PM   #2
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Personally i wouldn't worry about it but thats me, maybe tell them you are thinking about becoming car-free and see what they have to say about. Ultimately if you have a dependable way too work it shouldn't be any of their business (IMHO).
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Old 01-26-11, 03:45 PM   #3
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I'm scared! I'm in Phoenix, AZ. I've landed a job as a lead tutor, and I KNOW I can do the job. But the people who hired me don't know that I am car-free. There is a subtle prejudice that runs through this city about people who are seen coming to work in anything other than a car. I've been car-free for over nine months, and now I get a good job, and I'm freaking out.

I've been thinking about buying an electric bicycle, or converting my cruiser to an electric bicycle. But at this point, I don't know if I should do that, or if I should buy a moped and get it registered, licensed and insured. I'd have to take riding lessons for the moped too, I'm sure.

Any ideas?
In most states mopeds do not need a license. If you can ride a bike you can ride a Moped.
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Old 01-26-11, 05:07 PM   #4
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Congratulations on the job.

If anyone asks about you cycling, just mention you enjoy riding your bike a lot more than you enjoy driving a car. By so doing, you are not presenting yourself as an opponent of cars or an ecological zealot. You're just someone who's passionate about riding a bike and you're not going to be seen as a threat or an antagonist. (Don't try to fake this statement. If you're going to use it, you also have to mean it.)

Also, as long as your form of transportation is not negatively affecting your work, you shouldn't get into trouble with your employer.
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Old 01-26-11, 05:27 PM   #5
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If you can do the job just do it.

I can't believe someone is "scared" of not arriving for work in a car. It's a school isn't it?

Bizarre.
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Old 01-26-11, 05:37 PM   #6
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I've been unemployed for the past few months and I've been looking for jobs. I plan on going car-free very soon, but I'm keeping my car right now just so I can say that I have a car in my interviews. Every interview I've been to has asked me if I have my own car, and I'm not one to lie. I knew that if I said "I don't have a car, but I plan on cycling to work everyday," they wouldn't hire me.

The last place I went into for an interview is seriously a little under a mile from my house, but they still wanted to make sure I have a car. As soon as I get the job, (if I do,) I'll put my car up for sale. I don't think they'll ask me any questions as long as I'm showing up for work.

If anyone asked me, I'd say "It saves on gas," "it's an easy way to stay healthy," or Newspaperguy's "I like riding my bike more than driving cars." That way, you don't even have to tell them that you don't own a car. It does save on gas, whether you own a car or not. They'll probably just assume you have a car with those answers.

After you've worked one day, I doubt they'll ask you about your transportation unless you call in every time it rains or make a big deal about it.
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Old 01-26-11, 07:02 PM   #7
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I got to work via public transit or bike for several years. I did have a car at the time, but it was in pieces. I got asked about it occasionally, but never hassled. I am of the school that would rather be riding than driving.

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Old 01-27-11, 12:13 AM   #8
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If you can do the job just do it.

I can't believe someone is "scared" of not arriving for work in a car. It's a school isn't it?

Bizarre.
Where you live and where I live, showing up for work on a bike or on foot or using public transit is not going to be an issue. The exception would be if the job requires the employee provide a car. Traveling sales positions and some delivery jobs would fall under that category.

In some areas, however, bikes are seen as playthings, not serious transportation. In such areas, getting around without a car could be seen as something bordering on defiance. In other areas, bikes are seen as nothing more than transportation for those who have lost their licenses for impaired driving or for those who are unable to afford a car. In such communities, a car-free or car-light lifestyle is a daring and radical choice.

Those of us who live where transportation cycling is accepted should realize it is not the same everywhere.
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Old 01-27-11, 05:13 AM   #9
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Those of us who live where transportation cycling is accepted should realize it is not the same everywhere.
I do realise that some types of employment will require applicants to have their own car and a valid driving licence but the OP refers to the job as that of a 'lead tutor' which I took to be a teaching job in an educational establishment of some sort. I suppose it could be a driving school but failing that I still find it bizarre that a teacher in a school anywhere in the world would feel under pressure to conform by driving a car to work.
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Old 01-27-11, 07:54 AM   #10
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I still find it bizarre that a teacher in a school anywhere in the world would feel under pressure to conform by driving a car to work.
I think we're "separated by a common language" again.

Around here, teachers work in schools--tutors work outside them, generally as mobile workers. In other words, here, tutors go to the students, not the other way 'round. Tutors sometimes use the public library as a place to meet with their students. We have rooms set aside for this purpose.

Of course, all this is only speculation as pertains to the OP.
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Old 01-27-11, 10:08 PM   #11
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The OP wanted to go the Moped route. If he/she wants to buy a motorized bike, please take the MFS course on how to operate a motorcycle. It could be the difference between life and death!
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Old 01-27-11, 10:39 PM   #12
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You can get to work on time and ready... If they didn't state you need to own a car to perform your job then they're idiots... and you want to work for idiots?

Now, if you're worried about fitting in with your co-workers...
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Old 01-27-11, 11:03 PM   #13
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I can't believe someone is "scared" of not arriving for work in a car. It's a school isn't it?
Maybe the OP is just feeling jittery about the new job. That understandable, even if misplaced.

Wouldn't it be ironical if his boss was really concerned about his employees' carbon footprints and thought riding a bike was terrific? It does happen...
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Old 01-28-11, 08:16 AM   #14
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I'm not sure how you think an electric bike or moped would be any different in the eyes of your employer than a bicycle. All in all Phoenix is a pretty bicycle-commutable city. The valley floor is flat. Not too much rain. No snow. And you can ride home slowly in summer months to stay cool. I commuted 9 miles each way in Palm Springs for years so I know it's doable.

You haven't told us whether the bicycle would affect your job. As tsl said, are you just in a school, are you going to student's homes or other locations? How long is your commute? Are there any factors that would make it impossible? I haven't seen anything that might militate against it. All I hear are vague thoughts.

Congratulations on the job. Take a test run on your bike so you know how long the commute is and figure out where you are going to lock your bike and enjoy the ride.
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Old 01-28-11, 03:10 PM   #15
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What employers don't know is that people without work today will go ANYWHERE for money. In my twenties, I would walk 2 miles down a dirt road that had no lights! After a while I was bike riding down that road without lights! Those were the days! LOL! Then I had another job where I would walk down a cliff and through a back alley to get to work!

In fact, many of the people who worked in that trucking company I worked for many years ago did not own a car. Yet we all managed to get to work on time regardless even though public transit was over a mile away! This whole myth that people without cars can't get to far locations is just that, a myth.
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Old 01-28-11, 04:00 PM   #16
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Not sure why an electric bicycle would be perceived any differently - (worse maybe even?) Or are you would you be doing it to arrive at work perfectly sweat-free?

I know in some areas where cycling is rare the prejudice is that if you are cycling you have a DUI conviction/lost your license. Is that what you are concerned about? I think if people ask you about it as newspaperguy says mention you enjoy it, and like saving money (most people can identify with that)

If you are more worried about the prejudice that bicycles are not reliable forms of transportation - well the only way to overcome that one is to show them!
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Old 01-28-11, 06:24 PM   #17
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Sounds like one of those things you shouldn't worry about unless it actually happens.
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Old 01-29-11, 10:15 PM   #18
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Is your new job paying you from the moment you step out your front door? Do they continue to pay you until you step back inside?

If these answers are NO, then your mode of transport to where they DO pay you is none of their business. It only matters if you need a car to DO the job.

But then, credit rating is irrelevant to insurance risk category, yet they use that, too......
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Old 01-30-11, 01:56 PM   #19
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If these answers are NO, then your mode of transport to where they DO pay you is none of their business. It only matters if you need a car to DO the job.
And technically, by federal tax standards, if you are an employee and you need a car to do the job then your employer should be providing it. Just as they would if they required you to drive a truck or a forklift on the job.
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I don't care if you are on a unicycle, as long as you're not using a motor to get places you get props from me. We're here to support each other. Share ideas, and motivate one another to actually keep doing it.
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Old 01-30-11, 02:11 PM   #20
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We haven't heard from the OP Nostalgic in 4 days and there have been a number of questions raised here that can only be answered by N.

Knock, Knock. Anyone there?
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