Haven't written on this thing for quite a while. Feeling pretty prolific today as far as my thoughts in my head go, so I thought I'd do a quick burst of blog entry. (Happened to be walking by the library, and am at a 15-minute internet terminal, so it'll be short-lived.) If it's any good, maybe I'll republish onto Facebook for more to see.
This morning was spent walking through the park with a good friend, conversing about this and that, and really getting to some good points on important issues. At the first and foremost in my mind this weekend has been the American obsession with the automobile, and all the problems it creates. People can live so much more pleasantly and efficiently when they don't have to worry about safely driving vehicle, parking it, keeping it running and fueled, etc. Many might see the lack of a vehicle as a constraint, but I see it largely as a freedom. When I'm out exploring a city or neighborhood, I don't want to worry about where I parked the car, how much I have to pay for the parking vs. finding a free, cramped spot on the street, whether the car is being broken into while I'm gone, and limiting my distance traveled so I don't end up too far away from the vehicle. I'm much happier stepping off a bus. That way, I can wander to my heart's content. When I'm ready to go home, often miles from my original point of entry, I find another bus stop and take a different route home. Or I can cycle my way through the city, and not have to worry about parking, while at the same time getting my exercise for the day. The typical American might view a city as being cramped, which is all the more reason to move to the suburbs. Free parking! You can drive where ever you want, whenever you want! No citations! Great. C'mon, guys. The problem is not the city; the problem is the car. You're attempting to fit something large into a space that cannot accommodate it. The solution: don't drive. Simple as that.
Oftentimes, when walking over the bridge that spans the girth of I-5 at rush hour, the sheer amount of machinery crawling slowly below makes me sad. This happens every day, Monday through Friday. Wasteful machines, each propelling a ton of metal, each guzzling gallons of gas and tearing up the concrete, all just to get one or two hundred pounds of human a little further up the road. It's disgusting.
Out of time for now, but I'm sure I'll write more on this in the future, as I do think about it pretty much constantly.