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CNN challenge:  document your CAR-FREE day via video/photos…. can you do it?
Posted: 01 September 2009 04:58 AM
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http://www.ireport.com/ir-topic-stories.jspa?topicId=322520

What if you were car-free?

Countless legislators and environmental groups have called for the United States to reduce its dependence on foreign oil. Do you think it’s possible?

Here’s our challenge: Leave your car at home for one day and show us how you get around. Whether you bike to work, take public transportation to the grocery store, or walk everywhere, we want to see whether ditching your vehicle is a realistic option where you live.

Document your car-free day through video and photos and let us know what it was like. And it you use alternative fuels, let us know. Your story could be featured on CNN.

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Posted: 01 September 2009 05:05 AM   [ # 1 ]
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I have a car-free day every day.
😉
But I do know it’s a lot easier here than it is in most of the US.

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Posted: 01 September 2009 05:06 AM   [ # 2 ]
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Around here you would be pretty much screwed.  Almost everything you might need to survive (except a job) is 1 to 3 miles away.  Minimum.  When it comes to jobs, they can be scattered anywhere along a roughly 11 mile by 5 mile rectangle.  Our public transportation is a joke, with the buses going through each neighborhood 5-7 times a DAY on average. (With almost NO bus traffic between 11am and 3pm.)  i guess it comes from us living in agri-country.  everything is pretty spread out up here…..

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Posted: 01 September 2009 05:20 AM   [ # 3 ]
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This sounds great…I’ll make my children participate, too.  They’ll be so excited to walk 4 miles to Jocelynn’s school (most of the way without a sidewalk along a VERY busy road) in temps that will probably by close to 90 by 8:30 or so!  The humidity will be AWESOME.

On the way home I can stop at the grocery store to pick up some items I need.  After that, my hands will be too full to hold onto little children.  I hope when we get to the part where we’ve got to cross the road (TWICE!) that they’ll have no problem running into traffic!

Later, when I need to run to Target, (cuz surely I can’t take my groceries with me…they’ll need to be refrigerated first)...we’ll walk the 4 miles to the bus stop (again, without sidewalks for most of the journey).  Once we’re on the bus stop, it will take us 5 miles beyond our destination…but I’m sure by this time it won’t be in the 90s anymore…just the upper 80s.  After we cross the overpass, Target will be in our sights!  Then all we have to do is cross 12 lanes of traffic (again, TWICE).

I bet it feels good to reall show our support!  Awesomely awesome.

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Posted: 01 September 2009 06:10 AM   [ # 4 ]
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I think I can detect a possible trace of sarcasm there, Maeg. 😉

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Posted: 01 September 2009 06:46 AM   [ # 5 ]
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Smerk - 01 September 2009 10:10 AM

I think I can detect a possible trace of sarcasm there, Maeg. 😉

:lol:  Really? :wow:  I thought she was just being really, really supportive. :lol:

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Posted: 01 September 2009 12:36 PM   [ # 6 ]
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Yeah, I’ll be glad to get up three or four hours early (at least) to take a bus into the city for an 8am class with eight (18"x18”) project boards and my giant T-square and other regular books.  Then, when I’m trying to leave and I’ve got all of that again and I have to take the rush hour buses down to work with all my stuff, it’ll all be fine.  Not like I would ever forget anything or anything.  After work, my boss would probably drive me home because he’d think the experiment was a dumb idea.  Otherwise, the bus wouldn’t get me home until 9 or 10pm, if that.  I’ve never seen a bus pass the stops out by my apartment except for late at night and early in the morning.

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Posted: 01 September 2009 01:53 PM   [ # 7 ]
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Smerk - 01 September 2009 10:10 AM

I think I can detect a possible trace of sarcasm there, Maeg. 😉

What’s that?  I can’t hear you over how AWESOME this idea is.

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Posted: 01 September 2009 02:01 PM   [ # 8 ]
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That would so not work here either.  We live 25 miles at least from two large cities, and pulling the trailer of lawn mowers behind us to get to the yards that need mowing is just not in my capabilities.  I think there are a lot of places where this would be very possible though, but so much of America is agriculture land, that it’s just impossible.  I don’t think Neo would appreciate my being that close to so many fast moving cars either.  I’m incredibly clumsy, no matter how hard I try not to be.

I’d probably loose weight really fast though if I WALKED the 25+ miles to Starbucks instead of driving there.  Damn that store and it’s delicious iced coffee drinks.

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Posted: 01 September 2009 02:02 PM   [ # 9 ]
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:lol:
So, in answer to “Do you think it

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Posted: 01 September 2009 02:39 PM   [ # 10 ]
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Aside from my commute to work, which simply wouldn’t be possible without my car, my ordinary days are pretty much car free.  Around town I generally either walk or use my bicycle.  Nothing for the usual day-to-day needs is more than about four miles away.  The Post Office is about a mile away, the grocery store a couple of miles, the library about a mile. . .I’m usually walking to those (though if I were to go to the grocery store and buy something like a 50 pound bag of potatoes, eight gallons of milk, and half a cow I’d probably want some other arrangement than just walking home carrying them in bags. . .).  It’s only on my irregular excursions to other towns that the car comes into use.  I only need to fill the fuel tank about once a month.

That’s one of the advantages to living in this area.  Because of the geography, everything’s sort of concentrated into the valleys, rather than spread all over the place.  Which is rather convenient for people, seeing as how taxis and passenger trains don’t exist around here and that the only regularly scheduled bus in the region runs for two weeks each year and has two stops.

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Posted: 01 September 2009 04:14 PM   [ # 11 ]
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I could but I ain’t gonna.

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Posted: 01 September 2009 04:40 PM   [ # 12 ]
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Accipiter - 01 September 2009 06:39 PM

. .I’m usually walking to those (though if I were to go to the grocery store and buy something like a 50 pound bag of potatoes, eight gallons of milk, and half a cow I’d probably want some other arrangement than just walking home carrying them in bags.

So you mean your normal dinner, then? 😕  :lol:

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Posted: 01 September 2009 06:37 PM   [ # 13 ]
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CarmenSense - 01 September 2009 06:01 PM

That would so not work here either.  We live 25 miles at least from two large cities, and pulling the trailer of lawn mowers behind us to get to the yards that need mowing is just not in my capabilities.

Why don’t you hook the trailer (or probably a smaller one) up to the riding lawn mower?  The study says to not use a car.  Doesn’t say you can’t use a riding lawn mower. 😉

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Posted: 01 September 2009 06:42 PM   [ # 14 ]
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I thought about this for about 15 seconds and decided it just wouldn’t work.  I really don’t like the idea of getting up to walk or bike the 15 miles into work at 630 am then have to walk/bike home at 730 in the evening after a long day at work.  There is no bus service between the town I live in and where I work so that is out of the scenario anyway.  If I were rich and didn’t have to go to work each day I could probably arrange it.  But since I haven’t yet hit the lottery or found someone to pay my bills for me this idea isn’t quite within the realm of reality.

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Posted: 01 September 2009 09:16 PM   [ # 15 ]
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Reducing private automobile use is one of those things that should really be tackled warily by any government.  Purely negative measures, such as restricting when cars can be used or adding extra taxes to fuel, will simply ruin the lives of people who have no other options.  The key is to provide those other options.  Take positive steps, creating more and better public transport and making it safer and easier for people to walk around or ride bicycles.

DavePrime - 01 September 2009 08:40 PM
Accipiter - 01 September 2009 06:39 PM

. .I’m usually walking to those (though if I were to go to the grocery store and buy something like a 50 pound bag of potatoes, eight gallons of milk, and half a cow I’d probably want some other arrangement than just walking home carrying them in bags.

So you mean your normal dinner, then? 😕  :lol:

Don’t be silly.  There would need to be a salad, too.

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Posted: 02 September 2009 09:51 AM   [ # 16 ]
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Well danbloom, you at least DO have a vehicle of sorts.  I have a wagon but it’s full of backyard stuff right now to go to the dump. 

I haven’t driven either since about 1991 at least.  However, like most here, it’s also impossible to nearly impossible to get to specific destinations; the most important being getting to suitable employment situations.  Though in the beginning I was able to get interview interest, most would have taken me literally 8 hours to get to and back again not just because of distance, but because I would have had to depend on public transportation ports, transfers etc. which would have also surpassed the daily funds I might have earned and would have plunged me into deeper debt.  The only other option was to move to the location where employment interest was given.  I did do that once moving from Maryland to Arizona only to then discover after days of travel and the last of my funds being spent to get there, that the job offers amounted to little more than minimum wage….............so, I had to sell the camper I’d just purchased to make the trip and head back to Maryland where I was finally able to find the only housing left to me in my then-financial situation which was in the heart of a crack neighborhood.

I did learn that for things outside of needing to travel to employment though, I could get literally everything else I needed to get by ordering it from the internet…..............then at least those could be brought TO me.

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Posted: 02 September 2009 02:53 PM   [ # 17 ]
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Berlynprime - 02 September 2009 02:26 PM

And my husband can just walk the 32 miles to work every day and back the way I figure it he’ll probably only have to leave at 4 o’ clock in the morning and he’ll be back by eight every night.

Either your husband walks, really, really fast or he works really, really short shifts.  Or both.

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Posted: 02 September 2009 03:12 PM   [ # 18 ]
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Berlynprime - 02 September 2009 02:26 PM

Ooh! Ooh! I want to carry my children in a little red wagon along the highway to the Wal Mart 14 miles away! (there’s not bad bus service where I live there’s no bus service). And my husband can just walk the 32 miles to work every day and back the way I figure it he’ll probably only have to leave at 4 o’ clock in the morning and he’ll be back by eight every night. Let’s do it! Heck, at least it’s summer now. Think of how much fun it would be in January as my kids and I freeze to death in Montana’s signature 30 below weather!

I can’t stand all of the talk about no cars. If I lived in Denver I could do it, or in practically any other larger city I’m sure it would be possible. That’s great, but possibly our lawmakers should consider life in other places before putting any legislation (or even these crackpot ideas) in place.

But you will save the earth.

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