What is the Bike Year?
The Bike Year is this thing our family is doing where we do not own a car for a year. Here are the rules:
- You have to get rid of your car for a year.
There are no other rules. Steph and I can take public transportation, we can accept rides from other people, we can take Ubers, and we can drive rental cars. We can use cars – we just don’t actually own a car.
If we thought about it very hard, we could probably make up many different rules about what we can and cannot do. But this is not a religion. It is a thing our family is doing. And it is hard enough as it is without making up additional ridiculous rules. Be reasonable, people! Gosh!
Isn’t that what loads of people do, like in New York?
Yes, you are right. Loads of people don’t have cars. For example, I was talking to my good friend John Wrathall, telling him about our bike year, and John was very complimentary.
“That is amazing!” John said. “I am very proud of you guys for going without a car.”
“I see you riding around a lot.” I said. “Do you mostly ride a bike too?”
“Yeah.” John said. “I have never actually owned a car in my life.”
John is like, fifty.
So, yeah, not having a car is not a big deal. I bet people who do not have a car way outnumber people who do have cars if you look at the whole world. You could imagine people in South America, for example, or India, where people are not wealthy enough to have a car. Also, in some expensive cities – like New York or Seattle, cars are an extravagance reserved for the very wealthy or the feeble-minded.
What makes Steph and I a little bit special, is that we had a car in a city where driving is easy, and we got rid of it anyway. We purposely made our lives harder than they had to be.
Is the bike year hard?
Sort of. But not hard in a “Blast! I have to go to work in the salt mines!” way, more like a “Blast! Gotta go run a marathon!” way. Basically, it is hard, but kind of fun too, when you look back on it.
Are you guys hippies who are trying to save the world?
Yes. But we do use soap, though. And we do not have a worm farm. So on the range of hippie-ness, we are only about a seven.
What is going to happen when the Bike Year is over?
I don’t know. I don’t think we will buy a car, summertime without a car is too much fun. We will have to see.