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Trying to push Car Free to the limit

Living Car Free Do you live car free or car light? Do you prefer to use alternative transportation (bicycles, walking, other human-powered or public transportation) for everyday activities whenever possible? Discuss your lifestyle here.

Trying to push Car Free to the limit

Old 04-07-19, 11:37 AM
  #1  
JoeyBike
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Trying to push Car Free to the limit

For the past two years I have been keeping my eyes open for a few jobs very near to my home. The kind of jobs someone pretty much has to die for an opening to occur. So finally, one of the jobs has opened up and I had a good interview. Now the waiting game and hopefully a call!

The new job is about 1 mile from my house. My route would be 2 blocks in my neighborhood, then cut through a community college campus (which is basically a park), cross one 4-lane road (35mph) and enter City Park. Then a 3/4 mile journey inside of the park. My new hopeful job is in the middle of the park. Most of the days I would just walk to work.

So...fingers crossed! I need a new job but REALLY do not want to own and maintain a car. My longtime car-free existence has given me a financial advantage over other applicants because I can work for $5,000/year less than they can if they need a dependable car. Since 1989 when I ditched the last car and motorcycle I have enjoyed this financial advantage when changing jobs.
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Old 04-07-19, 12:30 PM
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Good luck @JoeyBike!

Walking 1 mile strikes me as the most "dependable transportation" one could get short of telecommuting.
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Old 04-07-19, 01:16 PM
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Originally Posted by ThermionicScott View Post
Good luck @JoeyBike!

Walking 1 mile strikes me as the most "dependable transportation" one could get short of telecommuting.
Thanks TS! Yeah, one mile is a great distance. I had a job for over 10 years that was 1 mile away with a grocery store about halfway between! How sweet was that? I'll post the results of my search. This is not my only option but certainly the sweetest one!
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Old 04-14-19, 09:33 PM
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My son walks 5 blocks to work and just loves it! He even goes home for lunch a few times a week (and saves $$). He doesn't use his bike because he wears nice clothes and it's just easier to walk, even in the rain. He's never owned a car. Hope you get the job...from what my son has said, you will LOVE working close to home.
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Old 04-15-19, 01:33 PM
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Thanks for the input! Still waiting. City Park is a private park that does not get public funding, however they have to abide by State Park rules for a lot of actions, including hiring. I have worked for them before as a temp paid with a stipend as a contractor and a friend works in another department putting in the good word for me. They can't do "no-bid" contracts by law so I have to let them go through the motions. Can't imagine they find someone who can do everything I am capable of for what they pay. Benefits are great tho. And by not owning a car I have a financial advantage over other prospects.

We shall see! Could take a month or more. Cheers!
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Old 04-18-19, 11:34 AM
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Originally Posted by linberl View Post
Hope you get the job...
Got it! Starts in about a month. Assuming I pass the background check and my drugs check out and are good enough for them

Thanks for the kind wishes!
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Old 04-18-19, 05:23 PM
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Originally Posted by JoeyBike View Post
Got it! Starts in about a month. Assuming I pass the background check and my drugs check out and are good enough for them

Thanks for the kind wishes!
Hey CONGRATS!!!!! Enjoy the commute
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Old 04-19-19, 05:04 PM
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Congrats
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Old 04-24-19, 01:25 PM
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Good for you Joey. I know they don't consider Shreveport part of LA down in NOLA but I lived down there in the late 70s and early 80s. I swore off car dependency the weekend Katrina struck. I've followed you on Bike Forums for the last decade and am really glad you had this success. One of these days I plan to ride down to NOLA on La 1 till I get to the Ferry at Sunshine/Plaquemine.

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Old 04-24-19, 07:17 PM
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Originally Posted by JoeyBike View Post
Got it! Starts in about a month. Assuming I pass the background check and my drugs check out and are good enough for them

Thanks for the kind wishes!
Congratulations. Hopefully the other steps are easy to take as well. And there is nothing more grand than being able to build an extra part of employment life so close to home.
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Old 04-24-19, 10:09 PM
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Originally Posted by LorenMiranda View Post
Congrats
Thanks Loren!

Originally Posted by Mauriceloridans View Post
Good for you Joey. I know they don't consider Shreveport part of LA down in NOLA but I lived down there in the late 70s and early 80s. I swore off car dependency the weekend Katrina struck. I've followed you on Bike Forums for the last decade and am really glad you had this success. One of these days I plan to ride down to NOLA on La 1 till I get to the Ferry at Sunshine/Plaquemine.

Meaux

Still a lot of sugar cane farming along Highway 1 with harvest in the Fall. So unless you enjoy cycling on narrow roads covered in "broomstick handles", wait until that phase is well past. Of course, Summer is out of the question! Shoot me a PM if you ever do it!






Originally Posted by Rowan View Post
Congratulations. Hopefully the other steps are easy to take as well. And there is nothing more grand than being able to build an extra part of employment life so close to home.
Drug test is no problem. Background check will certainly put someone to sleep. One speeding ticket when I was 15. Besides that...unless my identity has been stolen I am golden!

Cheers all! And thanks! Looking forward to a 5-minute bike ride or 20-minute walk in the park. 10 minutes on a skateboard!

I'll post some progress for a few weeks. Hope to start May 7th.

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Old 05-01-19, 08:31 PM
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I start next Tuesday April 7th. One mile from home through the park. Woohoo!

I will bike/walk/skate two blocks in my hood, and cross one low-speed 4-lane road. Otherwise it's all campus/park lanes and paths.
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Old 05-01-19, 09:35 PM
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Originally Posted by JoeyBike View Post
I start next Tuesday April 7th. One mile from home through the park. Woohoo!

I will bike/walk/skate two blocks in my hood, and cross one low-speed 4-lane road. Otherwise it's all campus/park lanes and paths.
Hope you got the date right -- it's actually May now.

One of the little ironies of my current situation is that I actually made a little comeback to work with a brief unpaid session at a relatively nearby golf course -- and no, I didn't play a game. It's part of my return to work strategy and involve a small group of volunteer members of the club. Like you, I could express Woohoo!
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Old 05-01-19, 10:56 PM
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Originally Posted by Rowan View Post
Hope you got the date right -- it's actually May now.

One of the little ironies of my current situation is that I actually made a little comeback to work with a brief unpaid session at a relatively nearby golf course -- and no, I didn't play a game. It's part of my return to work strategy and involve a small group of volunteer members of the club. Like you, I could express Woohoo!
Oh yeah. May.

Yeah, good for you to ease back in. I'm going from the frying pan right into another frying pan but at least it's closer and prettier!
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Old 05-09-19, 03:59 PM
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The new job is a winner. Also, the HR person who worked with me is also car free and WALKS 40 minutes to work (about 2 miles). She used to bike to work but got too freaked out by all of the idiot/distracted drivers around our neighborhood. Then I got sent down to the building my job is located in and one of my coworkers is also car free. Got a DUI many years ago and lost his driving privileges. When all of his debt to society was paid he was spoiled by not spending money on cars. So he bikes to work as well.

My first day I walked to my workplace just to time it. As I knew, 1 mile = 20 minutes. My bike ride is just over 5 minutes depending on the route I take. I will skate there on one of my longboards on pretty days. Will take a longer route on some paths. Probably 20 minutes as well.

So there is the report! Since 1989 I have been able to figure out a way to NOT need a car for getting to work. Either I moved close to my workplace, or I looked for work close to my home. This time the latter.

Cheers all! Thanks for the good wishes. I am danged stoked!
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Old 06-03-19, 04:57 PM
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One month into the new job and settling into a routine. I have not walked to work as much as I thought I would but when I do my afternoon commute becomes a nice, long 5-mile hike sticking to the shade of trees and buildings as much as possible. It was 102F today according to my GPS. I actually skate to work most days. The only time I ride a bike is when I am stocking my food and drink supply at work, or have some special event after work that I have to get to by bike. I still run errands by bike when things need to be carried.

I believe I rode a bike to work 3 times so far, walked only once (very nice though) and skated the rest of the days. I doubt this changes very much unless I get an injury or something.

Cheers all! Unless there is real breaking news, I'm done with this thread.
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Old 06-10-19, 06:03 PM
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Originally Posted by mtb_addict View Post
I have seen recently a few people riding skateboard on the side walk as a real transportation mode.

It looks very interesting and fun. Wish I knew how to skateboard.

But I imagine the little wheels and bearings will wear out very quickly on the streets.
Saw that today with a young adult skateboarding along on the sidewalk next to a 4 lane roadway. He was headed to a highway overpass. I figure he was a student at the nearby college.

I also saw a few bicyclists pedaling toward that college this morning. One on a bullhorn bar fixie bike with only a front brake. No coaster rear.

Back in the day I was a skateboarder, but going any distance on certain roads vibrated me so much my vision was blurred. Now days, all I have to do is touch a skateboard with one foot and I fall down.
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Old 06-15-19, 08:49 PM
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Originally Posted by mtb_addict View Post
I have seen recently a few people riding skateboard on the side walk as a real transportation mode.

It looks very interesting and fun. Wish I knew how to skateboard.

But I imagine the little wheels and bearings will wear out very quickly on the streets.
Originally Posted by FiftySix View Post
Saw that today with a young adult skateboarding along on the sidewalk next to a 4 lane roadway. He was headed to a highway overpass. I figure he was a student at the nearby college.

I also saw a few bicyclists pedaling toward that college this morning. One on a bullhorn bar fixie bike with only a front brake. No coaster rear.

Back in the day I was a skateboarder, but going any distance on certain roads vibrated me so much my vision was blurred. Now days, all I have to do is touch a skateboard with one foot and I fall down.
Skateboards have come a long way over the past decade. My wheels are soft and 100mm tall. I can almost enjoy hardpack dirt or grass on it, but stick to smoother streets and paths anyway. Wheels last nearly forever for me. My quad skates have 70mm wheels which are the largest that will fit. And on skates I can just step over the larger debris or up curbs etc. I use cheapo bearings and keep them lubed. If they die I just replace them one by one. No biggie.
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Old 06-20-19, 08:28 PM
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Make sure you take this with you.

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Old 06-23-19, 07:08 PM
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Originally Posted by Rollfast View Post
Make sure you take this with you.

Ha! Thanks for the suggestion. That was new when I was young. Brings back mostly good memories. Time to make some more good ones too!

Cheers
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Old 07-01-19, 07:58 PM
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This is how my first full month panned out:

(All mileage includes my commute, some extra skate miles, and errands)


Source: https://www.endomondo.com/profile/35663751

Weather was decent so skating was possible many days. I used a bicycle to haul lunch fixins and snacks to work, and laundry one day a week, then carried a few essential fresh food items in a backpack each day when I skated.

Now I have a way figured out to avoid biking on work days - I now have a key and alarm code so I can bike to the grocery and just drop off whatever at the shop on the way home. This will definitely translate into fewer bike commutes. A bike will be my foul weather transport mostly.

I did walk to work twice for a total of 4 miles, plus about 2 extra one day. Not too fond of walking. I did not add walking to the graph as it was an insignificant sliver of color.

It took me about 7 weeks to get used to work starting at 7a.m. - my old jobs for 25 years started at 10a.m. The 3-hour difference was harder than I thought. Thankfully now I am waking up before the alarm clock and adding some short skate sessions before (on the way to) work.

I am also tinkering with the idea of using a baby jogging stroller as a transport vehicle while skating. I would put a backpack in the kid seat and a small cooler in the basket under the kid seat. I met someone who skated across the USA on inline skates about 20 years ago who used this method. The baby jogger has a hand brake so there was speed control going down mountains, hills, and bridges.

Anyway....this is where I am now. Cheers All!

P.S.: There is zero traffic at 6:30 a.m. in the park, and a statistical zero at 3:30p.m. weekdays. I could skate on bike paths and MUPs plus sidewalks 95% of the way if I wanted to. So much nicer to just blast down the empty roads in the park.

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Old 07-07-19, 07:56 PM
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18 days without riding a bicycle. Next three look good enough weather to skate to work so I may break 20 days.

I mostly commute on a longboard. Sometimes roller skates. Seldom on a bike. Likely fewer sessions walking to work. I just can't get into walking. Most of my recreation is roller skates. If the weather is suspect I switch to the longboard. 1/2 the bearings to fuss with over the skates.
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Old 07-12-19, 12:31 PM
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Joey you may have to commute on a surfboard this weekend. Good luck! Guestroom in Shreveport if you need it.
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Old 07-13-19, 05:21 PM
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Originally Posted by Mauriceloridans View Post
Joey you may have to commute on a surfboard this weekend. Good luck! Guestroom in Shreveport if you need it.
That is so kind man! Thanks. Looks like some rain might be heading your way. I think we dodged the bullet in NOLA, at least so far. Tree debris will be an issue for a while so I will be back on the bike until that gets cleared up.

Thanks again! Cheers.
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