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Are car-free teenagers cool?

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Are car-free teenagers cool?

Old 07-01-08, 04:25 PM
  #1  
Cully_J
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Are car-free teenagers cool?

Hey,

I'm a 32 year old man, so I'm so out of touch with youth culture.

Years ago, when I went to highschool, getting your driver's liscense was just a right of passage. And getting an automobile made one the pinnacle of coolness.

I wonder, teenaged bike forums readers, if it's still the same way?

Cullen
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Old 07-01-08, 04:35 PM
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no
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Old 07-01-08, 04:48 PM
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Yes it is still the same way. No they are not cool.

The urban fixed gear trend has made it a little different in certain very urban areas, but that is generally a college thing.
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Old 07-01-08, 09:59 PM
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What do I know... but I'd guess that riding a bike would magnify the person's current social status. If the coolest, riches, best looking athlete in school rode a bicycle others would start emulating them.

Thinking back to 8th grade... a new kid came to school, outgoing and everyone liked him. This guy got all his clothes from the thrift shop and looked it. He wore a tie, usually tied loosely, nearly every day.

By mid-year half the boys in the grade were wearing ties - of course, they were their "church ties" or something they nabbed from their father - copying the accessory, but missing the look entirely.
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Old 07-01-08, 10:04 PM
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I didn't even get my license until a few months before graduation. I was 18. Never really got around to it, until I thought "I'm graduating soon - better get my license." Even when I had it, I didn't drive much, as my parents needed their cars during the day.

I never had an issue with friends, or not being "cool" enough. I guess I was in the "band" crowd though, so what "cool" means in that setting is up in the air.
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Old 07-01-08, 10:04 PM
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I've seen a couple of teenage fixie riders so there are a couple of "cool" high school kids who ride for transportation, though probably not car free.

Let's face it, though, high school kids are infatuated with their cars.
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Old 07-01-08, 10:04 PM
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no... sadly.
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Old 07-01-08, 10:18 PM
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Originally Posted by Cully_J View Post
Hey,

I'm a 32 year old man, so I'm so out of touch with youth culture.

Years ago, when I went to highschool, getting your driver's liscense was just a right of passage. And getting an automobile made one the pinnacle of coolness.

I wonder, teenaged bike forums readers, if it's still the same way?

Cullen
Hard to get laid on a bike. When you have more hormones the sense you look for things that give you an edge in the getting laid dept. Even the "cool" teenager understands the value of Moms' ancient Suburban in this endeavor and the hopelessness of making the magic score when all you have to offer the subject of you amourous pursuit are a set of foot pegs on your trusty BMX bike.
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Old 07-01-08, 10:59 PM
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Let me throw out some ideas, being a young carfree guy, growing up in a large Canadian city.

Many youth in my generation (I was born in 1986) grew up in the suburbs. It was back in the time where gas was cheap, and many families owned multiple cars. We were driven everywhere. School, Soccer, groceries, the corner store. It has become lodged in the minds of many of my peers that the only way to get somewhere is a car. Add to this the image problems, and crumbling state of our public transportation.

My peers are also very spoiled. Many of my friends still live at home, without paying rent. Cars are part of the deal, as it's seen as a "need" to drive.

The flip side of this trend is that With the rising price of gas, environmental concerns, and growing populations, cars are getting less and less affordable and practical for young people. Many youth are still hanging on to their cars, taking extra jobs, working long hours.

I work a regular work week, I don't make alot of money, nor do I have a need for a whole lot of extra money, and I enjoy my job (preschool teacher).
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Old 07-01-08, 11:14 PM
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Originally Posted by Sirrus Rider View Post
Hard to get laid on a bike.
Bikes were the mode of transit in my days of frisky business. Sneaking in/out of windows are great until you get to your bike you left by the bushes and theres a big ugly dad waiting...

Back on topic...I am the only bike commuter at work, and no I am not cool. Sad thing is I have at least 4 co-workers who live within 4 miles of work and they still drive, and then eat out for lunch.
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Old 07-01-08, 11:19 PM
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When you have more hormones the sense you look for things that give you an edge in the getting laid dept. Even the "cool" teenager understands the value of Moms' ancient Suburban in this endeavor and the hopelessness of making the magic score when all you have to offer the subject of you amourous pursuit are a set of foot pegs on your trusty BMX bike
That didn't mean, that although I had my license, 6mos after my 16th birthday and I could use my parents car if either of them weren't using it, that I got many dates. I had a car, just like everyone else, but that didnt' make many any "cooler" than anyone else who had one.

Come to realise when I graduated high school, some 90% of my friends were only friends because I had a car.
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Old 07-02-08, 12:02 AM
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From personal experience, it's one of the most laaaaame things a teenager could do. However, I don't really care, and I'll proudly wear my lame moniker while saving gas money and not suffering from obesity.
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Old 07-02-08, 08:37 PM
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Originally Posted by ijgrant View Post
Let me throw out some ideas, being a young carfree guy, growing up in a large Canadian city.

Many youth in my generation (I was born in 1986) grew up in the suburbs. It was back in the time where gas was cheap, and many families owned multiple cars. We were driven everywhere. School, Soccer, groceries, the corner store. It has become lodged in the minds of many of my peers that the only way to get somewhere is a car. Add to this the image problems, and crumbling state of our public transportation.

My peers are also very spoiled. Many of my friends still live at home, without paying rent. Cars are part of the deal, as it's seen as a "need" to drive.

The flip side of this trend is that With the rising price of gas, environmental concerns, and growing populations, cars are getting less and less affordable and practical for young people. Many youth are still hanging on to their cars, taking extra jobs, working long hours.

I work a regular work week, I don't make alot of money, nor do I have a need for a whole lot of extra money, and I enjoy my job (preschool teacher).
ijgrant, I salute you! You summed it up so well. You are my son's age nearly exactly and I always wondered what the heck was the deal with him and his peers.

Many of them won't even consider riding a bicycle - I mean kids from 15 to 20 years old will beg and cajole their mothers for rides or simply not go, even if the distance is 3 miles and they have excellent bicycles in their garage.

I think the doting mother theory is correct. My kids and their peers grew up living in cars - mom picked them up at school and they drove all over town every night returning at 9:30 PM or later having already eaten fast food in the car. It was a phenominon that started with my generation of parents with kids born around the 1980's.

I sure was not raised that way and neither were my parents. Now, I have one young son. I am fighting my wife tooth and nail to NOT raise him like we raised the older boy. It seems to be working, but it is one tough fight to keep my wife from doing the same damned thing all over again.

We did this new generation a terrible dis-service by coddling them so much. They were robbed of the idea of independence and many of them today are still dependent on their parents with a higher-than-ever number of young men living at home successful only at under-achieving

Last edited by mike; 07-02-08 at 08:49 PM.
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Old 07-02-08, 08:42 PM
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Originally Posted by JosephPaul86 View Post
Bikes were the mode of transit in my days of frisky business. Sneaking in/out of windows are great until you get to your bike you left by the bushes and theres a big ugly dad waiting...

Back on topic...I am the only bike commuter at work, and no I am not cool. Sad thing is I have at least 4 co-workers who live within 4 miles of work and they still drive, and then eat out for lunch.
I hear ya. Let's see who retires first and best.

In the long-run, that $30 to $70 per week you do not spend on gas and that $50 per week you are not spending at the diner makes a HUGE impact on your ability to save and retire.

If you have not done so already, have a financial planner calculate the profound impact that investing $100 per week will do for you. You will be absolutely amazed. By the same token, have that same planner show you how much vices like smoking or drinking or fast food has on your portfolio.

Keep doing what you are doing and bicycle your way to an early retirement.

Last edited by mike; 07-02-08 at 08:46 PM.
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