What’s Luck Got To With It?

This blog is supposed to be about the cotton candy and rainbow aspect of cycling. Instead it gets into the dirty politics as well as enumerating every problem from a little annoyance to hellish nightmares that are brought upon by choosing to cycle in a place which spends billions of dollars to discourage it.

Nevertheless, I have learned that I need to embrace all of my emotions, so I’ll do that.

One of the things that really makes my blood boil when it comes to cycling, aside from the boring, sadistic jokes, is the notion that I’m somehow “lucky” that I can cycle to work–and everywhere else.

The one thing I am not is lucky.

Well, yes, I am lucky for many reasons, such as for having a wonderful princess. However, I am not lucky to be able to cycle because like I said, the government as well as private industries spend a shit ton of money to stop me from cycling or at least to make it seem scary and hellish.

There’s the nearly total lack of cycle parking, to the hidden government subsidies for motoring, to the ubiquitous red carpet that private industry lays out to motorists. There’s also the nightmarish aspects of my commute as well as the fact that there are wall–I mean freeways–which block my “right to the road” at every turn.

Yet, I cycle everywhere. Why?

Luck! 🙂

No, silly, it’s probably because of force of habit. At this point, I really don’t know why.

But it’s NOT due to luck.

Here’s how luck is made.

First of all, we chose to live in the most pedestrian friendly, and biking friendly neighborhood. This place was chosen to be near my and my princesses jobs. We also chose it to be close enough to ride to the beach at least once a week.

Next, we don’t have a car. If something can’t be biked to in ten miles of less: IT DOESN’T EXIST.

There’s nothing “practical” about this lifestyle.

That is, I totally hate it when people say it’s not “practical” to cycle to my job or with my kids or whatever else.

Clue train: We don’t live in Soviet Russia.

Automobiles are really, really expensive and they take a long time to maintain. Can someone with children really be expected to look after the sheer amount of paperwork and the amount of money spent motoring?

What about food and medical care not to mention college money. Isn’t it a bit, say, impractical, to waste this money on motoring when it’s just as easy and convenient to walk and cycle everywhere, if you choose to?

The government doesn’t choose where you live and work, unlike Soviet Russia. Thus, if you say it’s “impractical” to cycle that’s because of a series of choices that you made and are continuing to make.

If you have the cash to pay for a place that requires a car, you definitely CAN live some place where it’s practical to cycle IF YOU CHOOSE.

So it’s not luck which got me here. It was a series of pretty easy and obvious choices. If you look for a place to live on foot only then by default you’ll wind up in a place where you don’t have to drive to.

Plus, if you factor the extra money you save on a car into rent, you can pay more.

But there’s more! We don’t pay more. In fact, some of the more expensive places cater to automobiles only. In fact, it’s been shown that rent is as much as 25% higher due to the price of a mandatory parking spot. If we got rid of this, we’d all be 25% of our rent or housing payment richer! Not to mention the automobile richer.

Plus, think of what happens if you hit someone and go to jail. How practical will your commute be then?

So overall, there’s zero luck involved in my lifestyle. I chose it and anyone who has the vast amount of wealth to the part of the tiny percent who can actually afford an auto can join my very non-exculsive club. Also, practical, has no meaning the absolute sense, but only means something when you have all ready decided what to practice.

So if you are going to live in an elite, fancy pants neighborhood, then cycling may look ridiculous. But if you spend a fraction of the time you using waste on oil changes, and insrucance and all that other motoring nonsense, and do the research, you’ll discover that no matter what your excuse, you can bicycle.

And if you are so terribly disabled that you can’t bicycle, why are driving? Seriously, don’t be another statistic and kill someone. I know this sounds harsh, but it’s not nearly as harsh as selfishly continuing to drive until someone gets hit, and we collectively throw up our hands and pretent that it was just another preventable accident. It’s not.

Have a nice day. 🙂

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