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  1. #51
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ekdog View Post
    Would it be possible for you to admire someone who speaks out publicly in favor of cycling or must cyclists be seen and not heard?
    There are a lot of people, in my experience, who volunteer and work behind the public scene to get things done in cycling advocacy. They are members of bicycle advisory committee for councils and other levels of government. Usually, they don't have much of a public profile, but they are effective because they are there, riding and observing and reporting on issues, and making their contributions by turning up to meetings.

    There is a couple in Hobart who I have admired for a long time -- they aren't car-free, but they do spend a lot of time cycling, and they have been contributors to a city's cycling advisory committee for many years.

    We see people use cycling as a step on their ladder to achieving a public profile. But often they don't have much substance when it comes to being active in advocacy.
    Dream. Dare. Do.

  2. #52
    Long Distance Cyclist Machka's Avatar
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    My parents are not car free ... I don't think I'd even call them car light.

    But they enjoy cycling. They've both been cycling pretty much all their lives, and they were and still are inspirational to me. I grew up surrounded by bicycles, bicycling magazines, and cycling equipment. My father fixed bicycles for other people throughout the 1970s, and had a large collection of bicycles and bicycle parts he had acquired (thrift shops, donations, rubbish dumps, etc.) ... it filled our basement. I can't even imagine living in a house without a multitude of bicycles.

    We frequently cycled together as a family, and took the bicycles with us on many holidays so that we could do hub-and-spoke tours (stay in one spot, park the car, and then spend several days cycling in various directions to tour the area). One of our favourite spots was the Canadian Rockies ... Banff, Jasper ...

    My parents were active in other ways too ... lots of walking, hiking, cross-country skiing ...
    And they encouraged me to be active.

    Around about 2000, my parent's cycling had dwindled off. My mother started having some medical issues, and my father's interest level kind of died off a bit. But then, I had a chance to be an inspiration to them. In 2001, I started randonneuring, and in 2002, I did the Rocky Mountain 1200. My father provided support for the last half of the event, which I really appreciated ... and his interest in cycling was renewed! He bought a Trek road bicycle and a Cattrike recumbent, and began riding more ... and riding randonnees.

    I moved to Alberta, where my parents lived, in 2005, and a few months later we rode a 300K randonnee together. My father was in his early 60s then.

    My parents have moved to a place with better weather for more of the year, and last year, in his early 70s, my father logged the most kilometres he has ever done in one year. And he's fast!! My pace has dropped off since developing DVT, and he blows me away!! He rides the Trek and a mtn bike ... and just in the last few years, my mother has started riding the Cattrike and she's logging some decent distances too. So they're inspiring me again.

  3. #53
    Senior Member Ekdog's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rowan View Post
    There are a lot of people, in my experience, who volunteer and work behind the public scene to get things done in cycling advocacy. They are members of bicycle advisory committee for councils and other levels of government. Usually, they don't have much of a public profile, but they are effective because they are there, riding and observing and reporting on issues, and making their contributions by turning up to meetings.

    There is a couple in Hobart who I have admired for a long time -- they aren't car-free, but they do spend a lot of time cycling, and they have been contributors to a city's cycling advisory committee for many years.

    We see people use cycling as a step on their ladder to achieving a public profile. But often they don't have much substance when it comes to being active in advocacy.
    I don't understand why you need to preface any praise you give with words like the ones I've highlighted and then, in your last sentence, put down anyone who does have a public profile by generalizing about their motives. Are you jealous of people who are in the public eye? It sure seems like you are.
    Gimme that car-free living!

  4. #54
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    Quote Originally Posted by I-Like-To-Bike View Post
    I have no great respect for the ardent cheerleaders for Vehicular Cycling™, nor for performance enthusiasts, but dunno that your gross stereotyping fits all of us over 45. Some of us are not quite ready for tricycles and or rolling couches, or the rest home either

    This was my commuting route until 4 years ago, when I was 62. I rode in the right hand traffic lane of this 55mph road for six miles each way (of the 12 mile commute) because the road surface to the right of the white line is unsuitable for cycling due to its makeup of river rock. Now that I am retired, I still ride everyday in town (including -4°F this year with snow) on the same standard city bike I've been riding since 2002. Haven't needed to add an attachment to it for carrying a walker just yet.

    BTW don't younger people need to lockup their bicycles too?
    Of course-the BIKE THEFT PROBLEM- is everyones concern-HUGE concern in NOLA- and since mainly 20-30ish folks ride-they are the victims

    Yes I'm exaggerating-but I can see the day when a nice upright 3 wheeler would appeal to me-big rear basket-step thru-
    But most over 50 folks-won't don't feel feel comfortable mixing it up on that 45mph?? road-some shoulder, but big trucks- BLAST you when they go by

    But of course I exaggerate

  5. #55
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    Quote Originally Posted by B. Carfree View Post
    I was initially a bit mystified by this post. Then I realized that you are in the south, where you likely observe what you describe.




    Bear in mind that the obesity numbers are worse than this self-reported blurb shows.

    I guess we may have reached a bit of a catch-22. People are fat due in part to their lack of physical activity. Now you say they cannot engage in a simple physical activity because they are too fat and weak. What's to be done? Fortunately, cohort replacement may well rescue us. Young people are once again taking to bikes for transportation and a great many seem likely to stay with it. Old people will continue to die, with many of the inactive/obese ones doing so prematurely.

    The near-future cycling landscape may depend on the rate at which young, mostly urban riders change over to car-based transportation. I'm optimistic that today's young people won't be lured into car addictions.
    Exactly-I'm in a suburb of NOLA- we are FAT and in general older adults-SAY 45- don't exercise here.
    My point is rather than waiting for oldsters to croak,and hoping the younger folks will continue to ride
    push BIKES and lanes that might appeal to these NOT YET DEAD chubby oldsters
    as you say-it can only make them healthier
    the health aspect could be more important than the "fewer cars in street making my city less human scale aspect

    Deep south-very fat

  6. #56
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    Quote Originally Posted by Machka View Post
    Are you serious??? Really ... you must be joking!!

    Over 45 ..."over weight-perhaps not too agile- They can't safely comfortable ride a 2 wheeled bike"???

    You say you're in your 60s ... do you ride a tricycle?

    I can name hundreds of people over 45 who aren't particularly overweight and who are quite comfortable on a 2 wheeled bike. The average age on the Paris-Brest-Paris 1200K (that's an international Randonneuring event in France which attracts approx. 5000 cyclists, you might not have heard of it) is 49 years old. Yeah, sure, there are a few recumbent trikes in the crowd, and a handful of British riders like upright tricycles, but believe me, they aren't crawling along at 6-8 mph.

    Even within my acquaintance in the city where I currently live, there are a lot of over 45 cyclists ... I'm one of them, so is Rowan.

    As a car-free (in the past)/car-light person whose motivation is fitness, I think there should be much more of an emphasis on becoming extremely fit and strong, humans are meant to be fit and strong ... even past the old age of 45.



    (Maybe I should have gone wheelchair shopping instead of hitting the gym this evening)
    I should have mentioned-and another poster did mention it
    I live in NOLA- deep south- we are fat and we don't exercise past 45
    It is VERY VERY RARE to see a person over 60 on a bike in NOLA-
    Me is about it- even on the levee path-I see a couple of friends-old buddy and X wife-about my age-that is it

    But if we don't want to just wait for fat oldsters to die off-give them a transportation bike they can actually ride
    in a lane they would actually use-certainly not mixing it up in traffic-

    Hey those upright 3 wheelers-big rear basket-very functional-lot more stable than a 2 wheeled bike-

  7. #57
    Bicycle Repair Man !!! Sixty Fiver's Avatar
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    My friend did not need the extrabike... but I did give him the complete e-bike kit so he can convert his mtb for towing duties and hill climbing.

    In exchange he gave me two guitars and a small amp he does not play.... things he knew I was looking for but have not had the budget for.

  8. #58
    Sophomoric Member Roody's Avatar
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    I'd be very interested to read more posts about cool or inspirational people connected to the carfree world!


    "Think Outside the Cage"

  9. #59
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    Not to fawn or anything, but the coolest and most usefully informative car-free people I know are the ones posting to this sub-forum.

  10. #60
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    How about Diogenes, the original minimalist. Really, though, he was too extreme, and I find Socrates much more inspirational.

  11. #61
    Been Around Awhile I-Like-To-Bike's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mconlonx View Post
    Not to fawn or anything, but the coolest and most usefully informative car-free people I know are the ones posting to this sub-forum.
    Do you know or associate with (m)any adult voluntarily car-free people in your free time?

  12. #62
    Sophomoric Member Roody's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by I-Like-To-Bike View Post
    Do you know or associate with (m)any adult voluntarily car-free people in your free time?
    I don't suppose there are any carfree people you think are cool or inspirational?


    "Think Outside the Cage"

  13. #63
    Senior Member Ekdog's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mconlonx View Post
    Not to fawn or anything, but the coolest and most usefully informative car-free people I know are the ones posting to this sub-forum.
    I agree. I've learned a hell of a lot in this subforum, although it seems to have become a troll magnet of late and some of the most knowledgeable and positive contributors have been driven away.
    Gimme that car-free living!

  14. #64
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ekdog View Post
    hateful rant disparaging "old cyclists" ??
    I said folks over 45yo in the USA are overweight -and Bcarfree provided a chart indicating just that.(thanks B-carfree)

    And your comment about Trolls- after you parse every word folks write -and actually go to the trouble to darken phrases you find "questionable"-

    You need
    1)Dictionary
    2)Life
    And the above-isn't hateful-it is just a slightly snarky comment

  15. #65
    Sophomoric Member Roody's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by phoebeisis View Post
    hateful rant disparaging "old cyclists" ??
    I said folks over 45yo in the USA are overweight -and Bcarfree provided a chart indicating just that.(thanks B-carfree)

    And your comment about Trolls- after you parse every word folks write -and actually go to the trouble to darken phrases you find "questionable"-

    You need
    1)Dictionary
    2)Life
    And the above-isn't hateful-it is just a slightly snarky comment
    Dear @phoebeisis,
    I started this thread because I wanted to read some stories about inspirational carfree people. Do you have anything to add that's on topic? If not, I'd prefer that you start a new thread about fat old people, and let this thread get back on topic.

    Thank you, Roody


    "Think Outside the Cage"

  16. #66
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    OK
    I admire those folks who ride bikes-on the shoulder-with a big garbage bag-hunting up cans-cold,wet, extremely hot muggy-
    gritty determination to live despite their rough circumstances-that inspires me-
    The famous people mentioned here-don't inspire me-they aren't doing anything hard

    The LSU guy-he gets a vote too- I went to LSU- rode various bikes to school(60's-70's)-the campus was loaded with bikes
    Slight aside-he is a fairly typical looking -weight wise-for this area.

  17. #67
    Prefers Cicero cooker's Avatar
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    I like Ralph Nader as a car-free person.

  18. #68
    In the right lane gerv's Avatar
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    Mad Men actor Vincent Kartheiser is a devoted bus rider.

    http://www.treehugger.com/culture/th...tells-all.html

    Though Kartheiser admitted dating can be tough for a car-free guy -- even a celebrity -- he was eloquent in explaining the appeal of letting someone else do the driving:

    To go downtown where Mad Men is filmed, he takes either the Red Line or two buses. He reads, does crossword puzzles, and goes over his lines.

    "It's wonderful," he said. "Instead of driving and being stressed out about traffic, you can work your scene, you can do your exercises or whatever on the bus. Everyone's got their own deal." ...

    "I like that my life slows down when I go places," he said. "I have all these interactions with the human race and I can watch people living their life and not just in their car."

  19. #69
    Senior Member Ekdog's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cooker View Post
    I like Ralph Nader as a car-free person.
    I didn't know he was carfree. That's great. He must have come to the conclusion that it's all cars--not just Corvairs--that are unsafe at any speed.
    Gimme that car-free living!

  20. #70
    Senior Member Ekdog's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gerv View Post
    Mad Men actor Vincent Kartheiser is a devoted bus rider.

    http://www.treehugger.com/culture/th...tells-all.html
    After reading the article, I'm now a huge fan of Vincent Kartheiser, even though I've never seen him act.
    Gimme that car-free living!

  21. #71
    Long Distance Cyclist Machka's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by phoebeisis View Post
    I live in NOLA- deep south- we are fat and we don't exercise past 45
    It is VERY VERY RARE to see a person over 60 on a bike in NOLA-
    How strange!

    Why would you want to be fat?
    And why would anyone want to stop doing something that is fun, exhilarating, and good for you (exercise) at the halfway point of your life?

    Sounds to me that education is what's needed ... someone to tell people in that area that it is OK to get up and move.

  22. #72
    Long Distance Cyclist Machka's Avatar
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    Anyone else have parents or other relatives who inspired them to get active (and car-free/car-light)?

  23. #73
    Bicycle Repair Man !!! Sixty Fiver's Avatar
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    My mother never drove or had a driver's license... she cycled a little but preferred to walk everywhere and living in a small town that is still 2 miles by 3 miles there wasn't anywhere you could not walk or ride to in a short period of time. For a tiny woman she sure could cover the miles and she was hard to keep up to, even in her eighties she'd walk miles and miles every day.

    My step father drove and was a mechanic and truck driver so we were not car free but we were not ones to get rides... even when money was tight my parents ensured we had nice bicycles and that we knew how to take car of them as this gave us freedom.

    Most of the time we spent in the car was during our summer vacations... even in the coldest winters we walked everywhere.

  24. #74
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ekdog View Post
    I don't understand why you need to preface any praise you give with words like the ones I've highlighted and then, in your last sentence, put down anyone who does have a public profile by generalizing about their motives. Are you jealous of people who are in the public eye? It sure seems like you are.
    I have been more in the public eye than you could ever imagine. Why would I be jealous of people who are?
    Dream. Dare. Do.

  25. #75
    Fixed Kitty wipekitty's Avatar
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    Speaking of the Deep South...there were a couple guys I met when I lived down there who were inspirational, in part, because they managed to stay car-free in a town that was outwardly hostile to car-free folks.

    One guy had been commuting since the 60s - he rode through some times when things were pretty rough for everybody down there. Despite getting robbed at gunpoint, run into ditches by multiple drivers, and repeatedly chased by packs of wild dogs, he kept going. I didn't necessarily agree with some of his self-defense strategies, but he did what was necessary to keep riding.

    Another car-free guy down there had a good setup: he had a house close to work, and figured out how to take the bus partway to places on the other side of town. Over time, he'd collected a bunch of old frames and bike parts in his garage. This eventually turned into the town's first bike co-op.

    Generally, anybody who doesn't drive (for whatever reason) and is okay with that is pretty inspirational. Now that I'm in my 30s, I really don't know very many car-free people. There's a small group of people that I've seen out in the worst weather this winter, so I suspect that they're car free/car lite. Maybe we'll all be friends sometime.

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