Friday, May 22, 2009

"Do you always park on the sidewalk," I asked the man whose shiny Range Rover blocked the walk east of the office building at SW 80th Street and 70th Avenue.

"Oh, I hate it," he said. "But I work here and there's no more space." There were, perhaps, a few spaces left on the building lot, though not enough for all the other cars nosed in alongside the British SUV.

"I know where you can get a bike," I said. "Fun to ride and easy to park."

"I know," he said, nodding toward Bikes to Go just two blocks away.

There's a bus stop at the building's front door, a Metrorail station three blocks from where the Range Rover preempted pedestrian right-of-way, and the south end of the M-Path equally close. I had to wonder how many of the building's occupants cranked up their 3,000-pound chariots to ride 10 miles or less to that admirably-located workplace.

In a nutshell, there was much to explain our country's abject dependence on oil from abroad. There, too, a challenge to our sense of social responsibility. America's heedless waste of oil, and the cost of that waste to our national wealth and well-being, have hurt us more than most of us know.

You can be sure, however, that our children will know the cost. How many of us can say to our son or daughter, "I did my best not to lay this burden upon you"?


Eddie Suarez said...

Hey JHop!

I'd bike to work everyday. It's only 1.9 miles from door to door. I live just 1 mile from the intersection of US1 and 80st where I can safely ride the M-Path to work.

Unfortunately, the stretch from 72Ave to US1 along 80st is not at all friendly to non-motorized vehicles. Speeding cars, no bike lane, no sidewalk (there's a small one on the north side of 80 st but usually blocked by hedges, low branches, trees, etc), and now we can add construction, torn up asphalt and concrete to the list of dangers.

So every morning I drive my SUV 1.9 miles to work and 1.9 miles home while my two bikes hang from the rack in my apartment.


Martin Rheaume said...

"Unfortunately, the stretch from 72Ave to US1 along 80st is not at all friendly to non-motorized vehicles."

That's kind of a copout man. I know that it's not ideal cycling conditions, but it's certainly doable on a bike. I take 80th street anytime I need to get to the Dadeland South Metro Rail station. I go from the M-path to 80th street, and then take a left on 70th ave. I've done this dozens of times. I know 72 is a couple blocks further, but believe me, that stretch is safe enough for any experienced cyclist.