Listen to the horn go beep beep beep as we travel near and far
Posted by clubsodaandsalt on June 3, 2008
I’ve been here all of a month, but I’m as comfortable as ever. And I have observations!
The biggest change in my life — aside from increased burrito consumption — has been the acquisition of a car. You see, J and I were lucky enough to find an apartment that included a parking space. Since apartments are hotly contested here, we had to agree to rent the space along with the place. Once that sunk cost had been accepted, it was really a hop skip and jump (to the San Bruno Honda!) to tripling it with car payments, insurance, and the like.
Understand that this tore me up inside, and that I continue to feel liberal guilt about it everyday. As you’ll note from my links, I am an avid reader of Streetsblog, mouthpiece of the car-trodden cyclist, fighter of motorheads everywhere, and dogged promoter of congestion pricing. But hey, I don’t use it to commute, so that makes it a little better, right? And besides, it’s a hybrid! I hear they clean the air as you drive.
It’s weird, though. Here I am in San Francisco, surrounded by organic toothpaste and vegan chorizo and composting and more locally grown organic food than you can shake a cup of fair trade mocha at, and yet it would appear that driving is acceptable. Buy a hybrid in New York (a city that refuses to put out any recycling cans), and people look at you with a mixture of pity and disdain (and groan audibly). Buy a hybrid out here, and people cheer – no, really, they literally say “YAY!” and congratulate you — for becoming part of America’s addiction to the automobile. I don’t understand it.
Despite this, I feel guilty. Guess I’ll soothe myself with a donation to Transportation Alternatives. Ah, that hit the spot.