Monday, July 03, 2006

The Brainshrub Bus Project

I dare you to go without your car for a whole month.

You don't want to?

Okay, I'll do it for you. Let's call it "The Brainshrub Bus Project".

For the month of July I will not use my car unless public transit is not available, or, there is a dire emergency. I will report my experiences here on BlogAsheville and, and, describe the benefits, or shortcomings, of the Asheville Public Transit system.

This project was inspired by the observation that Americans complain about higher gas prices, traffic jams, global warming, the war in Iraq and a host of other problems associated with an automobile-based culture. Yet, they shun public transit - the most obvious solution.

I'm hoping to prove that you are not as much of a slave to your car as you think you are.

Outside of major major metropolitan areas such as New York or Chicago, most Americans consider public transit as too inconvenient for a busy professional to use regularly. It is thus relegated as a subsidy for the poor to get to work, rather than a way to make a city run more efficiently.

I don't know why this is so.

Perhaps Americans secretly dread being exposed to the poor on their way to work?

In any case, I'm done complaining about our collective dependency on petroleum for transportation. I'm going to do something about it by putting my money, and my feet, on the bus.

Asheville is a mountain town of about 60,000 people. It's fairly representative of most American cities: We have sprawl, highways and malls. Everything in the Brainshrub Bus Project should be repeatable in urban areas of the United States.

My home is about 5 miles from the center of town, so this project will require a bit of logistics. I can't just roll out of bed and go to work... in fact, I'll be looking for a new job this month. Therefore, if the transit system does not work efficiently I may find myself late for interviews.

Let's see what happens. I have to admit that I'm a bit nervous, I haven't been without a car since I was 16.

Note: This is a cross-post from:


Kathryn said...

Good luck. I ride my bike to work, but only when the weather promises to play nice.

Edgy Mama said...

Go Brainshrub! Way to go!

modpez said...

when i lived in phoenix it was (still is) like LA, existence was sketchy without a car. nerve wracking with a car. i had a friend who had several years before parked his car in his backyard for good and said the hell with it. he never drove again. he had a bicycle. phx is not a bicycle type town: few sidewalks, extremely dangerous roads and drivers, 115 degrees at least in the summer. and he was a typesetter who worked freelance all over town. he became a walker who could easily do ten miles a day.
ahead of the curve i'd say, and so are you mr shrub, no car might become a habit.