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Emotional Attachment to our Cars

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Emotional Attachment to our Cars

Old 08-06-18, 07:04 PM
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Sir Lunch-a-lot 
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Emotional Attachment to our Cars

As I am working towards going car free and was looking into the logistics of selling my car, I realized that I have quite an emotional attachment to my car (which - given the costs of loan payments, insurance, fuel and general upkeep - is quite an expensive emotional attachment). I am curious as to what the experience has been in this regard for those of you who have or are in the process of pulling the trigger and going car free.
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Old 08-06-18, 07:44 PM
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Originally Posted by Sir Lunch-a-lot View Post
As I am working towards going car free and was looking into the logistics of selling my car, I realized that I have quite an emotional attachment to my car (which - given the costs of loan payments, insurance, fuel and general upkeep - is quite an expensive emotional attachment). I am curious as to what the experience has been in this regard for those of you who have or are in the process of pulling the trigger and going car free.
There, that there could be the biggest "problem" to going car free... IMO anyways... Other than the "brainwashing", the "social pressures", the "deliberate elimination/cut backs to public transportation"... I have been "trying to go car light" for the last few years, and not even come close to car free.. and... am a failure... Probably because of my own desires/laziness but I also suspect subliminal cues people give me when I tell them riding my bicycle is "better" than driving my car and am trying to push myself in that direction...
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Old 08-06-18, 11:25 PM
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I have a much bigger emtional attachment to my bike. I can't wait to get rid of my car (and it's a good car) as I find it a "burden" to own and maintain, while my bike is fun to work on. It's going this fall and I just can't wait. But then I never had that "car love" thing that so many Californians have. It's always just been a tool to get me from point A to B. Going from point to point on a bike, otoh, is a lot of fun!
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Old 08-07-18, 07:07 AM
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I am car lite. Bought my first vehicle in 1995. Title in mom's name. I would borrow it. Once mom became too old to drive, title was transferred to me. In 2013 some DB kid hit it while it was parked and totaled it. Over 18 years old. Only 108K miles on it, and that was between three people who used it during its lifetime. My ex-GF nicknamed her "Old Bessie." I felt sad when I cleaned her out at the garage and said my goodbyes. Een took a few photos.
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Old 08-07-18, 07:10 AM
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It is difficult because we sometimes identify with the car, it's part of the identity that we present.
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Old 08-07-18, 10:10 AM
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Emotion is why we make bad decision. So I try to block that from happening...saying it's just a car. I stop myself whenever I feel something...it just a car.
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Old 08-07-18, 11:30 AM
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It was admittedly a bit sad when I sold my last car - I'd had the thing for nearly a decade, and it had lived with me in four states and traveled through many more. I'd also dumped a lot of money into it to keep it safe and reliable.

I realized, though, that I was barely using the car and it would have a better life as a town runner for someone who actually needed to drive on a regular basis. Hopefully, the high school student who bought it had a few good years with my old car
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Old 08-08-18, 01:01 PM
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People often are emotionally attached to things, bikes, boats; and for some people to their cars. Objects are often considered to have some magical power, such as being lucky; other objects have some connection to the spiritual world. It's just the way our brains work.
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Old 08-10-18, 10:49 AM
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Originally Posted by wipekitty View Post
It was admittedly a bit sad when I sold my last car - I'd had the thing for nearly a decade, and it had lived with me in four states and traveled through many more. I'd also dumped a lot of money into it to keep it safe and reliable.

I realized, though, that I was barely using the car and it would have a better life as a town runner for someone who actually needed to drive on a regular basis. Hopefully, the high school student who bought it had a few good years with my old car
That is pretty much how I felt when I sold my Dodge Shadow to the scrap metal yards after moving to Alberta from Saskatchewan (it would have had to pass another out-of-province inspection, which it never would have passed due to serious rust issues).

Many of us have dated people to whom we felt greatly attached. However, in spite of those feelings of attachment, sometimes we come to realize that pursuing the relationship further is a bad idea for various reasons - and so, in spite of those feelings we have to grit our teeth and break things off. In a way, saying goodbye to our cars may be similar: We feel particularly attached and letting go will be difficult and may even hurt, but it may well be in our best interest to grit our teeth and part ways (and maybe have a good cry about it later).
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Old 08-10-18, 11:09 AM
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One looks back at them, like your youth .. in retrospective,

they were simpler and you could fix them yourself..
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Old 08-10-18, 11:25 AM
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Originally Posted by fietsbob View Post
One looks back at them, like your youth .. in retrospective,

they were simpler and you could fix them yourself..
That is definitely a huge advantage. I used to try to do my car maintenance myself, but I found that it was such a pain in the butt without proper facilities in which to do it (and then I discovered bylaws that effectively prohibited DIY car maintenance on the street, and later when I had a parking spot lease restrictions that prevented it). Bike maintenance, by contrast, can be done in my living room in a pinch.
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Old 08-10-18, 11:33 AM
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Spent some time in Boston , in the 70s, they had a CoOp garage,
you rented space and tools by the hour.
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Old 08-10-18, 08:21 PM
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Originally Posted by Sir Lunch-a-lot View Post
That is definitely a huge advantage. I used to try to do my car maintenance myself, but I found that it was such a pain in the butt without proper facilities in which to do it (and then I discovered bylaws that effectively prohibited DIY car maintenance on the street, and later when I had a parking spot lease restrictions that prevented it). Bike maintenance, by contrast, can be done in my living room in a pinch.
LOL, I had similar experiences. I was so proud of myself for actually replacing something called the mass air flow sensor - it was before everything was online, so I even went down to the public library to read the service manual! I discovered that it was technically a violation of my lease to work on my car (which seemed really dumb, so I didn't care); and, like you, I discovered that it was difficult to do without proper facilities and buying a bunch of new tools.

Most of my bike maintenance, at this point, is done either in the kitchen or the "hobby room". Of course, I bought a bunch of tools anyway.
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Old 08-10-18, 09:10 PM
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I probably have owned about the same number of bicycles as cars over the years...
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Old 08-10-18, 09:18 PM
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Originally Posted by wipekitty View Post
It was admittedly a bit sad when I sold my last car - I'd had the thing for nearly a decade, and it had lived with me in four states and traveled through many more. I'd also dumped a lot of money into it to keep it safe and reliable.

I realized, though, that I was barely using the car and it would have a better life as a town runner for someone who actually needed to drive on a regular basis. Hopefully, the high school student who bought it had a few good years with my old car
That's a nice mental trick - you found it a good home.
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Old 08-21-18, 11:33 PM
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Driving was always a stressful activity for me; I am quite a good driver, having been trained by a pro driver of 20-odd years, but I never really enjoyed it. When I learned that people in the States actually can and do travel exclusively by bicycle, I was intrigued and quickly grew attached to the idea.

With that in mind, the emotion I felt most was relief, after some lingering anxiety over needing a car and not having it. Ultimately though it wasn't a problem. I don't have kids and don't haul heavy or big things often, so any old bike was good enough.
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Old 08-22-18, 12:37 PM
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I think the majority of bike riders (99%... at least in this country) have an appreciation for the technology and enjoy the sport for it's own sake and not for utilitarian reasons or in comparison to horses, cars, airplanes, trains and things..
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Old 08-23-18, 03:26 AM
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Originally Posted by McBTC View Post
I think the majority of bike riders (99%... at least in this country) have an appreciation for the technology and enjoy the sport for it's own sake and not for utilitarian reasons or in comparison to horses, cars, airplanes, trains and things..
99% huh? How you calculate that? Why is the number worth mentioning?

Get your calculator out and tell me how many appreciate the technology and DO have utilitarian reasons? How many DON'T appreciate the technology and yet DO have utilitarian reasons? How many have slight utilitarian reasons but mainly ride for sport? How many ride ONLY for sport and NEVER for a utilitarian reason? And why do you give a flying f&c*?
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Old 08-23-18, 10:04 AM
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Originally Posted by Walter S View Post
99% huh? How you calculate that? Why is the number worth mentioning?

Get your calculator out and tell me how many appreciate the technology and DO have utilitarian reasons? How many DON'T appreciate the technology and yet DO have utilitarian reasons? How many have slight utilitarian reasons but mainly ride for sport? How many ride ONLY for sport and NEVER for a utilitarian reason? And why do you give a flying f&c*?
Dragging me into your emotional third-world mindset won't make many abandon logic here. In this country income level is positively associated with ownership of a bike. In lesser developed countries, the reverse is true. In this country, even those who own a motorcycle generally also own a car or truck. This is common sense:

This might be because owning a bicycle in the U.S. is more about biking as a hobby or recreational activity than in other emerging economies, where it is more often a means of transport.~Pew
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Old 08-23-18, 03:26 PM
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Originally Posted by ADAP7IVE View Post
Driving was always a stressful activity for me; I am quite a good driver, having been trained by a pro driver of 20-odd years, but I never really enjoyed it. When I learned that people in the States actually can and do travel exclusively by bicycle, I was intrigued and quickly grew attached to the idea.

With that in mind, the emotion I felt most was relief, after some lingering anxiety over needing a car and not having it. Ultimately though it wasn't a problem. I don't have kids and don't haul heavy or big things often, so any old bike was good enough.
I have met a number of people who move to the US from somewhere else where people bike and/or use transit and walk more, yet because they think that driving is just the way things are done in the US, they go with the flow and join the herd, so to speak.

People who LCF in the US typically don't mind giving up certain cultural norms because they don't feel the need to maximize cultural conformity by participating in every cultural behavior they can. People who come from elsewhere, either temporarily or permanently, on the other hand, often seem to find it more important to conform to what they perceive as cultural standards. Probably the fear of being ostracized for failing to join the car culture is sharper if you are already worried about being treated as a 'foreigner' and scrutinized as such.
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Old 08-23-18, 04:21 PM
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Originally Posted by tandempower View Post
I have met a number of people who move to the US from somewhere else where people bike and/or use transit and walk more, yet because they think that driving is just the way things are done in the US, they go with the flow and join the herd, so to speak.

People who LCF in the US typically don't mind giving up certain cultural norms because they don't feel the need to maximize cultural conformity by participating in every cultural behavior they can. People who come from elsewhere, either temporarily or permanently, on the other hand, often seem to find it more important to conform to what they perceive as cultural standards. Probably the fear of being ostracized for failing to join the car culture is sharper if you are already worried about being treated as a 'foreigner' and scrutinized as such.
Oh, I think most people "conform" to the status quo/cultural standards, especially when it shows a certain amount of "success"... It's just the way it IS.
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Old 08-23-18, 04:26 PM
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Originally Posted by 350htrr View Post
Oh, I think most people "conform" to the status quo/cultural standards, especially when it shows a certain amount of "success"... It's just the way it IS.
Sure, people conform in various ways, but choosing to forego car ownership is something that many people perceive as a deal-breaker in terms of social inclusion and societal participation. It takes a certain degree of independence to realize that you can choose to live without owning a car and then adjust your lifestyle to fit that choice.

People who are moving to the US often have the idea that owning and driving a car is a culturally standardized choice, so they basically think, "when in Rome . . ." Probably the percentage of people foregoing car ownership and driving is higher among citizens because there are just a certain number of people who dismiss the need to own and drive a car. They realize they can fit bike-commuting and/or transit/walking into their lifestyles and they just do it. They are not worried about what they are missing out on, whereas someone who is coming to the US to 'fully participate' in 'the culture' may really want to conform to the driving norms as a way of 'fitting in' better; i.e. because they are more afraid of not fitting in.
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Old 08-23-18, 06:06 PM
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Originally Posted by tandempower View Post
Sure, people conform in various ways, but choosing to forego car ownership is something that many people perceive as a deal-breaker in terms of social inclusion and societal participation. It takes a certain degree of independence to realize that you can choose to live without owning a car and then adjust your lifestyle to fit that choice.

People who are moving to the US often have the idea that owning and driving a car is a culturally standardized choice, so they basically think, "when in Rome . . ." Probably the percentage of people foregoing car ownership and driving is higher among citizens because there are just a certain number of people who dismiss the need to own and drive a car. They realize they can fit bike-commuting and/or transit/walking into their lifestyles and they just do it. They are not worried about what they are missing out on, whereas someone who is coming to the US to 'fully participate' in 'the culture' may really want to conform to the driving norms as a way of 'fitting in' better; i.e. because they are more afraid of not fitting in.
Choosing to forgo car ownership today, is like choosing to not have an Ox, or a cow... or Chickens even, for that matter 200+ years ago... It meant, that you are just so POOR that you can't "afford" them... People do NOT want to be "perceived" as "That poor"... EVEN for ideological reasons, unless you are a "fervent believer of said lifestyle"… and.. there ARE some examples of modest living being held up as the "ultimate" closer to "God type of living" (monasteries') everyone else should/needs to try to live, "if "they were just devout enough... and, then, they would live like that.

EDIT; and, just to try and stay "on subject/topic" cars/vehicles, have become ox, cows, chickens for "showing wealth" as a front to what your "actual" l financial life, IS... Oh, and land, which today means cottages, but 200 years ago meant you are a "land owner", a TOTALY DIFFERENT way of looking at life/fitting in a certain strata of life... or your house, which, TODAY, cost you lets say, $400,000 and cost your dad $4,000...

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Old 08-23-18, 08:26 PM
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Originally Posted by tandempower View Post
...


the percentage of people foregoing car ownership and driving...



...
Considering no one drives a car because they've decided to forego bicycle ownership, the notion that the idea of commuting by bicycle and car ownership are two events that cannot simultaneously exist is obviously, totally contrived. Statistics show that most who commute to a job didn't begin the job by riding a bike to work... it's most always something that persons of a certain gender and age toy with as an idea that given the circumstances not only seems possible but also may offer various advantages.
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Old 08-24-18, 05:33 AM
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Originally Posted by 350htrr View Post
Choosing to forgo car ownership today, is like choosing to not have an Ox, or a cow... or Chickens even, for that matter 200+ years ago... It meant, that you are just so POOR that you can't "afford" them... People do NOT want to be "perceived" as "That poor"... EVEN for ideological reasons, unless you are a "fervent believer of said lifestyle"… and.. there ARE some examples of modest living being held up as the "ultimate" closer to "God type of living" (monasteries') everyone else should/needs to try to live, "if "they were just devout enough... and, then, they would live like that.
No, this is a classist-prejudiced way of thinking. Everything you're saying is auxiliary to transportation choice, which is ultimately just about what vehicle you take to go someplace and what effects your choice has on others and the future.

Still, I think this mentality is exactly what prompts people moving to the US to drive, i.e. in order to avoid triggering classist prejudices. Really, all you can do to deal with bias and prejudice against you is to ignore it and act independently, but when you do the people who are prejudiced will ridicule you and otherwise try to punish you and force you into submission to their narrow views. You really shouldn't validate their narrow-mindedness by submitting, but people do because they manage to control economic resources and jobs that people want access to.
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