Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Everyone else is doing it, so why can't I?

I'm jumping on the blogwagon, and putting in my two cents on the two Slate ariticles about biking that are making noise on the blogsphere.

Good bicycling articles point out that cycling, although different from driving a car, is not worse. They mention how changing your schedule or dress can easily integrate cycling into your lifestyle. They comment on how we have a tendancy to take for granted many of our actions and how our habits are reflection of the environment we grew up in. Overall, they focus on changes, not sacrafices, and talk about the benefits.

Neutral articles weigh the costs objectively. They point out how some benefits may not be as viable in your community, and how yes, it may take more work sometimes. They may even admit the commuting may not be best for everyone. Overall, a good article will mention obstacles, but also mention how to overcome them.

A bad article would look at cycling through the eyes of a driver, only seeing how its impossible to maintain habits they think are necessary while riding a bike.

Bicycle Diaries is a bad article. Actually, its worse than a bad article. Not only does he reinforce myths about commuting, but he actually makes up a couple of new ones. Cycling will get you fired? You'll be outcast from society? I'll admit that some people might look at you differently, but that's just because they're not used to seeing cycle commuters. I bet people gave a weird look to the first person to drive down the street on a car also.

Nobody bikes in LA is a good article.


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