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Myths and misconceptions about living car free

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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.

Myths and misconceptions about living car free

Old 07-26-17, 05:12 AM
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How about we move on to another myth or misconception?
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Old 07-26-17, 05:25 AM
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Old 07-26-17, 09:58 AM
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Hey, don't use my thread to shill for your threads
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Old 07-26-17, 10:04 AM
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Originally Posted by cooker
How about we move on to another myth or misconception?
Originally Posted by cooker
Hey, don't use my thread to shill for your threads
It is a misconception, if not conceit, that the original poster owns or has a special privilege to determine what is appropriate for posting on allegedly his/her thread.
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Old 07-26-17, 10:13 AM
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Originally Posted by I-Like-To-Bike
It is a misconception, if not conceit, that the original poster owns or has a special privilege to determine what is appropriate for posting on allegedly his/her thread.
Is that a misconception about car free living?
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Old 07-26-17, 10:29 AM
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Originally Posted by cooker
Is that a misconception about car free living?
It is a misconception held by a few of the posters on this list who badger other posters who post "OP unapproved" responses on "their" threads. Perhaps it is a misconception held by such OPs that such conceit and/or smugness is considered part and parcel of the mindset required for Living Car Free.

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Old 07-26-17, 10:29 AM
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Originally Posted by I-Like-To-Bike
It is a misconception, if not conceit, that the original poster owns or has a special privilege to determine what is appropriate for posting on allegedly his/her thread.
It's not a question of ownership. It's a question of the purpose and scope of the thread. Sometimes links to other threads are appropriate, other times they are more like subtle attempts at hijacking the thread.

If anyone is free to say when they feel a post doesn't honor the spirit of the thread/OP, why not the threadstarter as well?
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Old 07-26-17, 10:30 AM
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The myth is to believe extoling the virtues of LCF for everyone is rational or even desirable. It's like the railroads in their heyday making a the most basic marketing mistake of not understanding that they weren't in the railroad business, they were in the transportation business.
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Old 07-26-17, 10:44 AM
  #259  
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Originally Posted by I-Like-To-Bike
It is a misconception held by a few of the posters on this list who badger other posters who post "OP unapproved" responses on "their" threads. Perhaps it is a misconception held by such OPs that such conceit and/or smugness is considered part and parcel of the mindset required for Living Car Free.
On topic, not "approved". The question of whether or not I have misconceptions about the role of the OP on BF threads, has nothing to do with LCF/LCL. Start a thread if you think it is a worthy question. I would suggest the Forum Assistance & User Suggestions sub-forum.
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Old 07-26-17, 12:47 PM
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I can only offer opinions based on my own reality and perceptions, so take it with a grain of salt.

Preface: A few years back I sold my vehicle and went without one for over a year. It was a concious choice to reduce my footprint, live healthier, and streamline my finances. But then there was a medical emergency with one of our dogs and the feeling of helplessness caused me to purchase another vehicle. The dog was fine.

Fast forward a few years and it occurred to me that I have literally spent thousands of dollars on insurance, fuel, and maintenance over just a couple years on an expensive truck that I was inventing reasons to drive.

The truck has been sold and I am once again free from the burden of automobile ownership.

So... back on topic...

Myth: Living car-free / car-light has no bearing on inter-urban travel

Truth:
Since selling my truck and convincing myself that I would just ride my bike the 30km to visit family in a different community, I have not visited them once on my bike. They either come to me, or I hitch a ride with another family member going the same way.

----------

Myth: Panniers are the end-all and be-all of shopping by bicycle.

Truth: They can actually be a pain in the rump to shop with. In my area you don't dare leave them on the bike while shopping - they will get stolen. This means I have to place them into a cart to shop, meaning also that placing other itmes into the cart with them can be troublesome.

----------

Myth: Choosing to not own an automobile makes me some kind of flippin' hero in the eyes of others because I am saving the planet, the whales, kittens, puppies, and orphans.

Truth: People think you're an idiot for selling your truck and instantly start offering to take you places like you just contracted a terminal disease. Other people cannot see the value or logic of choosing to travel by bike. One dear friend even scolded me for not asking for money when I was obviously going through a tough time. I needed no money and was not going through a tough time. I simply got sick of watching hundreds of dollars per month going out the window on a vehicle I actually don't need.

There is a lot more, but I'll start with just these personal observations
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Old 07-26-17, 01:20 PM
  #261  
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Originally Posted by McBTC
The myth is to believe extoling the virtues of LCF for everyone is rational or even desirable. It's like the railroads in their heyday making a the most basic marketing mistake of not understanding that they weren't in the railroad business, they were in the transportation business.
That's actually not a bad topic for discussion, although perhaps too political for this forum and thread. Also, I think you are implying one of those sweeping generalizations, which we see a lot of here, which don't actually hold up to scrutiny - in this case that people here are recommending LCF "for everyone". Obviously there are a lot of people for whom LCF can't work and nobody is suggesting everyone adopt that lifestyle. So I guess it would be hard to debate a topic based on a faulty premise.

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Old 07-26-17, 03:33 PM
  #262  
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Originally Posted by tramptrade
Myth: Living car-free / car-light has no bearing on inter-urban travel

Truth:
Since selling my truck and convincing myself that I would just ride my bike the 30km to visit family in a different community, I have not visited them once on my bike. They either come to me, or I hitch a ride with another family member going the same way.
I hope nobody is promoting the myth that your life is the same with or without a vehicle. There are some opportunities that might open up if you are saving a lot of money by not funding a vehicle you rarely use, but there are inconveniences as well.

You indirectly touched on another myth, which is that if you give up your car, you shouldn't cheat and get rides from other people. Of course that is up to you and if they want to claim you aren't truly "car-free" they're just arguing about terminology, not about anything really important.
Originally Posted by tramptrade
Myth: Panniers are the end-all and be-all of shopping by bicycle.

Truth: They can actually be a pain in the rump to shop with. In my area you don't dare leave them on the bike while shopping - they will get stolen. This means I have to place them into a cart to shop, meaning also that placing other itmes into the cart with them can be troublesome.
Do you have a better system?
Originally Posted by tramptrade
Myth: Choosing to not own an automobile makes me some kind of flippin' hero in the eyes of others because I am saving the planet, the whales, kittens, puppies, and orphans.

Truth: People think you're an idiot for selling your truck and instantly start offering to take you places like you just contracted a terminal disease. Other people cannot see the value or logic of choosing to travel by bike. One dear friend even scolded me for not asking for money when I was obviously going through a tough time. I needed no money and was not going through a tough time. I simply got sick of watching hundreds of dollars per month going out the window on a vehicle I actually don't need.
I almost hate to say this but would this perception that you're an idiot or must be broke or are logically challenged be enough that if they were looking to hire you, they might have second thoughts about whether you are a good risk?

Originally Posted by tramptrade
There is a lot more, but I'll start with just these personal observations
Good start.
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Old 07-26-17, 03:57 PM
  #263  
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Originally Posted by cooker
I hope nobody is promoting the myth that your life is the same with or without a vehicle. There are some opportunities that might open up if you are saving a lot of money by not funding a vehicle you rarely use, but there are inconveniences as well.

You indirectly touched on another myth, which is that if you give up your car, you shouldn't cheat and get rides from other people. Of course that is up to you and if they want to claim you aren't truly "car-free" they're just arguing about terminology, not about anything really important.
Do you have a better system?
I almost hate to say this but would this perception that you're an idiot or must be broke or are logically challenged be enough that if they were looking to hire you, they might have second thoughts about whether you are a good risk?

Good start.
I thought you wanted to move on? How would they know he was car free unless they were already a friend? If they were a friend they might just as easily hire him to help him out of something he didn't need helping out from.

My neighbor just gave up his car and let his niece have it. He got two of those electric 3 wheeled scooters so one would always be charged of if one of his kids visited he didn't have to drive they could both ride a scooter. I noticed on the community e-mail page he was looking for someone to give him a ride to the Sprouts down town. He needed more room than a scooter could manage. I think I will offer to take him the next time I need organic food and some imported cheese.
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Old 07-26-17, 05:03 PM
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Originally Posted by cooker
I hope nobody is promoting the myth that your life is the same with or without a vehicle. There are some opportunities that might open up if you are saving a lot of money by not funding a vehicle you rarely use, but there are inconveniences as well.
No, this was more so myself trying to justify my choice and assure myself that things would be okay

Originally Posted by cooker
You indirectly touched on another myth, which is that if you give up your car, you shouldn't cheat and get rides from other people. Of course that is up to you and if they want to claim you aren't truly "car-free" they're just arguing about terminology, not about anything really important.
While I prefer to just use my bike or walk, I am not above using transit, taxi, or accepting a ride from another individual if it's appropriate and necessary. I don't really care too much about other people's opinions of whether I am truly car-free or not. If it's monsoon-like weather and I need 50 lbs of groceries, I'm taking a bus - end of story.

All public transit buses in my region are equipped with front bike racks, so I also have the option of loading the bike onto a bus and travelling further when needed.

In the end I made a choice that I have to be comfortable with regardless of what the next person thinks.


Originally Posted by cooker
Do you have a better system?
I use my trailer for larger loads, but unfortunately no, I do not have a better system. It's more a case of getting more experienced with using the tools I have to accomplish more and more.

I may feel differently in a year.

Originally Posted by cooker
I almost hate to say this but would this perception that you're an idiot or must be broke or are logically challenged be enough that if they were looking to hire you, they might have second thoughts about whether you are a good risk?
While I am self-employed, reading through the posts re: "job seekers", did give me cause to think. If I had to interview for a job I don't think I would show up on a bike. I would likely use use transit so that I was as clean, fresh, and well-groomed as possible.

That's just me though. Others no doubt will have their own opinions.

Originally Posted by cooker
Good start.
Thanks!
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Old 07-26-17, 06:10 PM
  #265  
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Originally Posted by Mobile 155
I thought you wanted to move on? How would they know he was car free unless they were already a friend? If they were a friend they might just as easily hire him to help him out of something he didn't need helping out from.

My neighbor just gave up his car and let his niece have it. He got two of those electric 3 wheeled scooters so one would always be charged of if one of his kids visited he didn't have to drive they could both ride a scooter. I noticed on the community e-mail page he was looking for someone to give him a ride to the Sprouts down town. He needed more room than a scooter could manage. I think I will offer to take him the next time I need organic food and some imported cheese.
It was a bit facetious about the job. However it was always "if they knew, would they care" not "how would they know".

Anyway, I did predict earlier the thread we would start seeing more three-wheeled electric bikes - not sure if a scooter counts. Is it at all like one of those sketchy "bikes" that has the ridiculously awful pedals that no-one ever uses, as a gimmick to allow it to use bike faciities?


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Old 07-26-17, 07:52 PM
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Originally Posted by tramptrade
Myth: Choosing to not own an automobile makes me some kind of flippin' hero in the eyes of others because I am saving the planet, the whales, kittens, puppies, and orphans.
I guarantee some people view your choice as heroic, whether or not they tell you so. Many people don't get it, because they block the logical connection between personal choices and their broader social consequences. As a vegetarian, I am aware that animals would not be slaughtered for meat if no one bought and ate the meat, yet no one is praising me for my diet. If they comment on it, it's usually to do with health and if they comment on the animal kindness aspect, they say something like one person can't change the world, or animals are meant to be used as food, etc.

To us carfree people who DO see the connection between driving cars and the amount of pavement put down, the degree of sprawl in an area, the amount of fuel burnt, the cost that driving and infrastructure add to an economy; you are a hero for putting effort into taking personal responsibility, just like everyone else who does so. You are a hero to your own health and fitness, and a hero to set an example that LCF is nothing to shy away from. People who don't want to follow your example won't usually view you as heroic, but that doesn't mean you aren't.
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Old 07-26-17, 08:07 PM
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Originally Posted by cooker
... So I guess it would be hard to debate a topic based on a faulty premise




.
The doom and gloom religion and politics of global warming alarmism aside, what is true of cars is equally true, mutatis mutandis, of bicycles… both being means of personal transportation.
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Old 07-26-17, 08:07 PM
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Originally Posted by cooker
Anyway, I did predict earlier the thread
I think you're confused about which thread you're in ...
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Old 07-26-17, 08:18 PM
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Originally Posted by cooker
It was a bit facetious about the job. However it was always "if they knew, would they care" not "how would they know".

Anyway, I did predict earlier the thread we would start seeing more three-wheeled electric bikes - not sure if a scooter counts. Is it at all like one of those sketchy "bikes" that has the ridiculously awful pedals that no-one ever uses, as a gimmick to allow it to use bike faciities?

Nope, no pedals at all. Looks like one of these only a bit sleeker and his are somewhat faster than these pictures. All Scooters : Royale 3
I see them all over town now and some even drive them into the store. They drive them in the mall. And not everyone is disabled or elderly. I see young riders driving them because they can drive on the sidewalk. I have even chased one on my bike and he could clock about 15 MPH.

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Old 07-26-17, 08:46 PM
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Originally Posted by McBTC
The doom and gloom religion and politics of global warming alarmism aside, what is true of cars is equally true, mutatis mutandis, of bicycles… both being means of personal transportation.
Name a bunch of stuff that is equal about cars and bikes.
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Old 07-26-17, 08:47 PM
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Originally Posted by Mobile 155
Nope, no pedals at all. Looks like one of these only a bit sleeker and his are somewhat faster than these pictures. All Scooters : Royale 3
I see them all over town now and some even drive them into the store. They drive them in the mall. And not everyone is disabled or elderly. I see young riders driving them because they can drive on the sidewalk. I have even chased one on my bike and he could clock about 15 MPH.
What is their legal status on the road or sidewalk?

Actually, never mind, I'm going to cross-post to the 5 year predictions thread.

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Old 07-26-17, 09:05 PM
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Originally Posted by cooker
Name a bunch of stuff that is equal about cars and bikes.
Sounds like a new thread--e.g.,

Both cars and bikes...

1) can be used by racers to earn a living
2) get flats
3) require service
4) come in different makes, models and prices and are made in different countries
5) have a long history
6) can be used to deliver newspapers
7) sometimes become more valuable with age
8) are enjoyed my millions
9) have forums
0) can be taken on vacation
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Old 07-26-17, 09:15 PM
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Originally Posted by McBTC
Sounds like a new thread--e.g.,

Both cars and bikes...

1) can be used by racers to earn a living
2) get flats
3) require service
4) come in different makes, models and prices and are made in different countries
5) have a long history
6) can be used to deliver newspapers
7) sometimes become more valuable with age
8) are enjoyed my millions
9) have forums
0) can be taken on vacation
Equal racing income? Equal frequency of flats? Equal amounts or service? Equal diversity and range of models and prices? You get the gist.
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Old 07-26-17, 09:35 PM
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Originally Posted by cooker
Equal racing income? Equal frequency of flats? Equal amounts or service? Equal diversity and range of models and prices? You get the gist.

You have a valid point. But as Carlton Reid's book points out cycling made cars not only possible but gave them a road to drive on. I thought you might enjoy the irony of this site of Detroit's most famous cyclists. Just a FYI

Roads Were Not Built For Cars | Detroit?s most famous cyclist: Henry Ford
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Old 07-26-17, 10:11 PM
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Originally Posted by cooker
Equal racing income? Equal frequency of flats? Equal amounts or service? Equal diversity and range of models and prices? You get the gist.
You are making my point... you say, "I think you are implying one of those sweeping generalizations, which we see a lot of here, which don't actually hold up to scrutiny," but obviously the reverse is true when we see the introduction of the specious element of equal frequency. The gist of it is that we're talking about comparing two things -- in this instance -- bikes and cars -- albeit, making necessary alterations while not affecting the main point at issue.

After you remove the religion and politics of LCF pride and prejudice, both bicycles and cars are methods of personal transportation. Unlike walking, however, bicycles like cars are considered vehicles and are supposed to obey the same traffic laws as a motor vehicle...stop signs, turning lanes, signaling a turn, etc. The fact that a bicyclist must be in good health to ride 50 to 100 miles in a day is irrelevant but perhaps very relevant to the utility of a bike versus a car, depending on our goals and circumstances and what we wish to accomplish like--e.g., earn a living.
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