Sunday, May 22, 2005

The Idea

I’m tired of driving a car. I want to quit. I have some very simple and some very complex reasons for doing this. Assuming this experiment and blog survive, I might be able to get into some of that.

But for right now, the place to start is here: “I’m going to quit driving.” But it’s really not that simple. The automobile is a convenience and enables some very important activities in my life. I have a wife and two young boys in my life that need to be able to go places and see and do things. There’s no way I could decide that I will never use a car again. So what am I really thinking about doing?

The Idea: maximize the number of times I make use of alternative modes of transportation between May 25 (the final day of school) and September 5th (Labor Day).

The converse of The Idea: minimize the number of times I make use of an automobile alone.

5 comments:

Anonymous said...

Great idea. I have been attempting same for past few years. A little easier as is just me and dog. And Austin area has great cycling resourses plus capmetro is slowly sucking less and less. Weather in SD makes winter traveling without car a bit more problamatic

carp said...

Dear "- car"
I'm a dentist in Rapid and I ride my bike to work almost everyday. If I'm taking the recycling to the dropoff, or dumping my yard waste, I sometimes drive. And sometimes if it's raining too hard and I'm feeling like a pussy that day. Your doing the right thing by not driving a car very much. Human power is much more efficient that burning fossil fuels.
I also have enjoyed your commentary on the need for environmental legislation. Many of the conservatives religous leaders I hear from are morons on environmental issues. Maybe they are afraid of aligning themselves with the left a little too much. I saw John Thune in church on Sun. (I was in Sioux Falls) and almost said something to him but that probably wouldn't have been appropriate in church. Anyway, keep riding your bike. You will rub off on other people. When people start seeing and riding bicycles and stop driving thier huge SUV's South Dakota will be a better place.

Alex said...

I drive 88 miles to work ONE WAY.
I am supporting a wife and 2 kids.
I am in a town of 800 people, every time I apply here, I don't get the job.

What to do?

We have to build support structures for all of us, and not expect Exxon or the govt to build it for us.

The economy isn't like the weather or a flu--we create it.

Vegetarian millionaires and billionaires? Let's go for it!
Bicyclists and walkers can do it too.

I also live in a "dog" neighborhood, which is why I drive a lot around town. Some neighbors don't obey the leash law--I don't like big dogs baring their teeth at me while I walk down my street.

Dogs probably are a waste of carbon, too.

Singletrack Mind said...

Alex should move. Part of America's car problem is the fact that it encourages non-sustainable lifestyles.

coxiw94RioUqBZ_BHQ9A0tbb2MDz05oIU7Cb8q3jcth_ said...

I lived for two years in the Portland, OR area, which is considered the most bike-friendly area in the country. I used the bike or bike & transit (including a great commuter train system) for almost everything I did in the greater metro area. I really miss that lifestyle.

I now live again in Marshall, MN. Most of my friends and family, including my children, live in the Sioux Falls area. By necessity I have to use the car to spend time with them, but I still try to commute to work (4.7 miles one way, literally the opposite end of town) and run in-town errands with the bike as much as I can. Eventually I do plan on getting a job in Sioux Falls so that I can eliminate a few hundred miles of driving every month.

I'm glad to have found your blog. Keep up the good work in getting the word out.