Friday, September 11, 2009

How To Change Your Life

Stop parking your car!! I am not anti-car, in fact, I quite like mine. My car, however, has no right to exist. It is not a person, and its physical space needs can not trump what another needs to live.

Streetsblog, San Francscio has an article titled "When Parking Spaces Are More Important Than Homes". It brings up the idea of limiting the number of people in a neighborhood based in the number of parking spaces. Reading it, I was reminded of how much I hate the words "parking space"!

We are surrounded by cars everywhere we go. We are swamped by the noise and the fumes and the speed. We chose where to live, where to work, how to get places, where to shop, where to camp, which school our kids should go to.... based on our cars. Even when we think we don't. The quiet neighborhood is chosen because there are fewer cars. We work 50 miles from home so the kids can play in the street without getting hit by a van.

I spend my time teaching my kids how to avoid being doored or hooked, instead of taking them off trail to learn how to bunny hop dirt bikes.

The biggest event in San Francisco this year is Sunday Streets- a car free event where miles of street are blocked to cars to the delight of tens of thousands. People in the City act like children at Christmas simply because there are no cars.

When the cars are gone, the people grow.

I know we are learning. I preach patience all the time. Tonight, I am impatient.

Change your life! Ride a bike! Stop parking the damn cars!


  1. Right on! Living in the city would be infinitely more enjoyable without personal cars everywhere. There was even a car on the lakefront bike path yesterday because the driver "accidentally" thought it was a road.

  2. Actually, I would rather that everyone did park the cars (in some centralized location, far out of the way) and then just left them there. The parked ones use up far too much of our planet, it is true, but I find them much less obnoxious than the badly driven ones, which are also far too numerous. Val

  3. Hear hear! Where I live every apartment has one assigned parking space, and there are a limited number of overflow spaces available. One of my neighbors (a sweet single mom about my age) sometimes gripes about the lack of parking because she has four cars for the two drivers in her household. I just don't get it.