Wednesday, August 16, 2006

How much is too much?

Well, it seems like the oil companies are doing everything they can to not cross over the magic $3.00 a gallon threshold. Remember a few months ago when the gas prices got that high? It seems like that is the price that really makes us stop and readjust our lives to actually CONSERVE gasoline. That was the price that actually caused people to alter the way they use their cars. Not that I'm an advocate for ditching the whole thing, buying a tricycle and going stuffed animal collecting, but I also don't want to earn money to feed my car's gasoline habit, either. I have found that bike commuting to work makes me a little less edgy and a little more alert. Now before you say, "that's easy for the bike shop mechanic to ride to work, but I have a REAL job that requires me to wear clothes not suitable for being covered in grease!", let me just remind you that my summer of freedom is coming to a crashing halt this weekend and I have to revert to middle school science teacher mode on monday. Some people talk about the crucible of fire they underwent in combat, but I have to face 80+ 14 year olds and actually teach them science. So, my little morning cruise to school helps me maintain a semblance of sanity (believe it or not). The real beauty is that it makes the kids think I'm even weirder... Anyway, try riding to work just once a month and see if it takes. If you live less than 3 miles from your work, then the trip will actually take you less time than by car. If you live within 5 miles of work (like 75% of all americans), then it will take you about the same amount of time. Now remember, that is door to door time, not just travel time. And before anyone thinks this is a conspiracy to sell more bikes, have you seen the beaters I commute on? One of them I actually saved from a dumpster! Any bike will work, but the main criteria is that you have to not care if it gets dirty or rained on, so the older and uglier the better! Just get out and ride for something other than recreation or "training" and see what you think!
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