Our California winter means that sometimes we have to dress like this:
We made it through the big cold spell without much bother. I'm pretty sure the drivers complained more about the cold than we did. I always think it's funny when people give us so much credit for riding around in the winter. After a few minutes of biking, I'm usually sweating. Drivers are the ones who have it rough--having to wait for the heater to kick on, taking off the kids' jackets to fit in the carseats, getting out of the car just as their bodies have adjusted to the warmth. Sounds like hard work to me! Riding certainly helps us keep the heat down in the house because we come in from the cold and it feels toasty warm already.
Our California winter means that sometimes we have to dress like this:
And sometimes like this:
Sometimes we resort to this:
Big Brother found a great way to keep his eyes from watering:
We see this guy riding along our route home on the wrong side of the street and on the sidewalk. I keep wanting to ask him why he does it but I don't have the nerve. He has a nice bike, a Cannondale road bike, and he rides for at least 3 long blocks on roads with clear bike lanes. My guess is that he eventually makes a left turn and he doesn't want to do that across traffic. It's amazing to me the variation in comfort-levels people have while riding. I just want to scream at him "It's not legal and it's not safer on the sidewalk!" He's obviously not doing it to be a jerk but he's not helping the bikers-as-scofflaws perception people have.
In other news, here's a chicken on a bike:
And here is a toy that my children will NEVER have the joy of playing:
Here is a crappy bike parking situation at the downtown Embassy Suites hotel (they had wanted me to park at the racks on the waterfront and I said "Heck no!":
And finally, in case you were wondering how our bike commuting is going, here's Big Brother rocketing along on his Isla Bike. He actually hasn't been riding as often because our morning timing often puts us way behind schedule these days. Also, one day he refused to ride because I couldn't find his black gloves and only had his blue mittens. Joys of parenting.
It was chilly for us this morning at about 30 degrees Fahrenheit and in typical Bustamante family fashion, we were "pretty much" prepared.
Yesterday, I threw both boys in the Bullitt due to time and schedule issues as well as my laziness about dressing them for warmth. The whole ride was a mess of "he took the blanket!" "my face is cold!" and so on and on and on. Today, I finally got around to call Splendid Cycles to order our Blaq Designs cover. Sadly, they're still in production and will take a few weeks to get here. That's what I get for waiting for the last minute.
Today, Big Brother got to ride his bike. He had his gloves, scarf, a couple layers of shirts, his big jacket, jeans, and his snow pants from last year that were smaller than I had expected. We pulled out the driveway and he immediately lost it emotionally. It was too hard to pedal with the big pants on. I kept urging him to keep moving but he wouldn't, he'd coast until he got really wobbly and then struggle to find his footing again. It quickly became a safety issue because he wasn't listening to me or reacting quickly enough. We pulled over and I took the pants off, leaving him with just his jeans. It was pretty frustrating considering how long it took us to get everything on him and then all the work to take them off again on the side of the road. Pretty silly to think we were only traveling less than a mile. He was totally happy once he could pedal again and then he just complained about his fingers being cold while he rode the rest of the way to school.
Little Brother got the blanket to himself this morning, which made life much easier. He's still too little to really figure out how to get his thumbs in the thumb-holes so mittens are a much more feasible option for him. These are waterproof ones from last year. Under his warm jacket is his fleece jammy top because he woke up late and under the blanket, he's wearing flannel-lined pants that we got from a thrift store. He was okay on our way to school but as we headed back, he took his gloves off and immediately regretted it. I tried to get him to just keep his hands under the blanket but he wasn't having it and he fussed the whole 8 minutes back home.
Lessons learned today: Buy the dang cargo canopy before the weather turns south! Also, make sure the layers fit and work before you actually need them. However, hot tea after a chilly ride fixes everything (except a loose BionX wire which I need to have Tim deal with as soon as he gets back from his fun Southern California vacation. I lost power 3 times on the way in to work and again once on the way home which was a bit more of a worry as the battery was also powering my lights! Luckily, I can pinpoint the offending wire and jiggle it enough to get rolling again).
I ordered two pairs of thermal pants for Big Brother from Sierra Trading Post--they were about $5 each with an additional 30% discount. I also got the boys a fleece neck gaiter as well (~$6 each). I don't really like the idea of them wearing scarves, especially on the bike where it could get caught in something. This way, they can pull them up over their noses without them falling off or getting tangled. It's hard for me to justify really investing a lot of money into expensive winter gear because we don't need to use it much and most likely, it'll be too small by the following year. Sierra Trading Post had some nice inexpensive gear and if you sign up, you can get $10 off your first purchase (and I'll get $10 for referring you!) so go for it!
Today was the first day of a new routine in our lives. Two weeks ago, our daycare provider told me that she was closing on the 28th. My heart sunk as I started researching new daycares and preschools, I realized that we couldn't afford my job at Practical Cycle anymore. Turns out, we had been paying about 1/4 of what standard places charge and there was no way for us to balance out a regular job with the cost of child care. So, as of yesterday, I'm back to being a stay-at-home mom for the first time in a year.
On top of this big transition in our lives, Big Brother's new school make for a crazy juggling schedule, Jose's new evening classes mean I'm in charge of all night-time duties four days a week, and my folks left town for the next month and a half so we've got easy access to a car (and a cat) for that time. It all makes for a whirlwind of emotions and activities. However, great change brings about new opportunities and right now, I feel like there are many out there for me. There will be more time for me to plan bike trips, more time for writing, and most importantly, more time to spend with my family.
While I am really going to miss my Practical Cycle family, I am looking forward to being able to still be a part of the shop in different ways. I've learned so much about bikes and bike shops from these guys, I am so grateful for the experience they've given me this past year.
I also have some contracted days with the Safe Routes To School program in one of the local school districts and Sacramento Kidical Mass is gearing up to be a regularly scheduled ride each 4th Saturday of the month.
Finally, bike overnights are coming back into our lives! We're starting up by squeezing one into August so we don't miss another month. This next one is going to be a doozy! Wish us luck! The boys and I head out tomorrow...
I was disappointed to end July without having accomplished a bike overnight. I had been planning on doing one each month for the year but knew that July was going to be tricky. This is my busiest month with the exchange student program. I had been hoping I could still squeeze in a very short ride but never got to it. The exchange students are wonderful and although it's a crazy time with little downtime, I love it all the same. While I wanted to reach my goal, I'm not about to sacrifice the small amount of sanity I'm retaining. August will put me right back on track.
Instead of dwelling on the lost month, I decided to recap what we've done so far this year.
Even though I am dying for another overnight, it's been a blast running around with all these awesome kiddos. Big Brother and I just spent 4 days in Southern California with them, going to Hollywood, Disneyland, Universal Studios, and Santa Barbara. It was almost an entire week without a single bike ride!
I'm sure we'll make up for it in August. Where shall we go next?
It's a good thing the Delta breeze has finally picked up or else the post I'm about to write might have been a bit more grumpy sounding.
June is my final month before all crazy breaks loose with my exchange student program. Amazingly, this is the first year that we are done BEFORE our deadline! Our incredible Sacramento team kicked butt and pulled it together beautifully! I am so impressed! To celebrate, I decided to flit off on my June overnight (barely squeezing one in at all...). Something close was the necessary criteria and I realized that I haven't done Beal's Point this year (yes, we went to Negro Bar which is close but it's not the same). Since I decided Beal's would be too easy of an overnight, I decided to add a little challenge--two little challenges, in fact!
Monster #1 and #2 joined me! It was just the three of us. We left around 2 pm on Thursday--a nice midweek getaway and I was still able to run around and get a bunch of work squared away . You'll see by the above photo that Little Brother didn't make it very far before the already long day got to him.
We packed our Hubba Hubba 2-person tent, two sleeping bags, two sleeping mats, some extra blankets because these guys won't tolerate being zipped into a bag, a spare set of clothes for the boys, warm sleeping clothes, socks and a new shirt for me, tooth brushes, sunblock, hippy bug spray, a couple toys and a couple books, Big Brother's baseball gear, three bottles of water, and some food.
I realized pretty quickly that I was totally insane (actually there were some warning signs earlier on...) but decided to just move slowly and patiently and see what happened. By Hagan Park, we were all pretty exhausted and it was hot. The boys got some of their yayas out and it was still fairly easy to convince them to get back on the bike.
However, after that, the hills increased and Big Brother was telling me that he needed a nap. Unfortunately, he doesn't get a nap when he's on the Mundo (we may need the Monkey Bars for longer trips). I was trying to keep him engaged and talking but it was getting difficult for me, too. I hadn't eaten very well and I was lugging about 100 lbs of gear (including kids), 80 lbs of bike, and myself (which is more than you need to know). A couple of times I got pretty dizzy so I finally decided to make a quick stop in the shade for some food.
It was actually pretty nerve-wracking because the area we stopped had a huge, steep cliff down to the river. Taking care of both kids on one's own is exhausting--especially when one of those kiddos is Little Brother. I got them back on the bike and was ready to roll again.
Once I got to Folsom, I knew there were few extra turns to get over the bridge. I stopped and asked a couple of different people at each intersection to make sure I was headed in the right direction. Every one of them looked at me and said "You realize that it's ALL UPHILL?" I told them that I did realize that and thanked them for the directions (while muttering under my breath about their wimpy 20-pound bikes and chiseled calves).
And then the uphill really started. And kept going. And going. In reality, it's about a 600' elevation gain over 3 miles. Nothing super crazy but we don't have hills in Sacramento so this is big for us. I used up every gear the Mundo had and just kept spinning and spinning and spinning. A jogger lapped us. So we stopped to pick some blackberries.
Somehow, we just kept moving in the right direction--up. We finally had the end in sight and it was still uphill. I walked the bike the last 500' with Big Brother walking next to me and Little Brother screaming to be "buckled" (he means unbuckled). We were all done. 30 miles in just under 7 hours, that may be a record...
Now the real work started--corralling two uncooped children. I managed to set up camp while the kids ran around. Little Brother is my bolter and managed to run down the road pretty far before I could catch him. Big Bother just kept bugging me to play baseball with him. We then walked over to the lake as a last-ditch effort in hopes that the concession stand was still open. My meal planning skills are lacking and we had run out of edible food pretty quickly (the more I ride, the more they eat). Again, it was like herding fireflies. Luckily for us, we were able to find snow cones!
Neither one actually wanted to eat the ice so I got that job while they sucked down the red dye and corn syrup (or whatever horrible things snow cones are made with). Brilliant parenting skills! By the time we got back to our tent, I locked us all in for the night and a mere 2 hours and 5-6 pee breaks later, the boys were fast asleep.
By 6:45 am, it was sweltering outside and we were all awake (I'd like to point out that this is "sleeping in" for us). Big Brother woke everyone up with a gleeful shout of "A bunny!!!" I didn't have any breakfast for the boys because we had eaten everything the day before. I packed up camp in about 1.5 hours (record time) and we set off for Karen's Bakery. The downhill was a beautiful way to start the day but anytime the road started back up, I could feel every muscle in my body screaming. We'd go from 20+mph down to 4 mph. What took us an hour to do last night was over in just 20 minutes or so.
It was hard to get the boys to eat because they wanted to play so much but I packed up what was left, grateful that we now had lunch.
Today was super hot and slow moving. Little Brother fell asleep and Big Brother eventually started complaining again. I pulled over to let him "rest" but the minute he was off the bike, he was running around.
Then, Little Brother woke up just as I was convincing Big Brother to get back on. He had the grossest diaper I'd ever seen and ended up having to ride the rest of the way without his shorts. Since we had taken so long at our pit stop, I didn't want to make many more stops. We sped by Hagan Park while I pointed at the other direction to distract them. The boys noticed but were only minimally fussy about the skipped playground.
When we did finally stop later down the trail, they caught the eye of a friendly Park Ranger who gave them stickers for wearing their helmets. The boys rolled in the dirt a bit more and we filled up our water bottles for the third time of the day.
The rest of the trip involved a lot of sweat, some screaming, and a lot of squealing laughter. It was hard to yell at them for wiggling the bike too much because at least they were happy but it was difficult to ride with Big Brother crashing into my back and the two boys taking turns leaning over to spit. Little Brother had one more breakdown just 7 miles to home. He finally agreed to eat the breakfast he had been refusing so I fed him quinoa cereal with my hands. It was gross but it helped us get home.
Finally, just two miles from home, back on city streets, I suddenly realized that Big Brother wasn't crashing his head into me on purpose, he was falling asleep! I couldn't engage him and his poor little head just kept bobbing uncontrollably. I pulled over and walked the bike in the crosswalk to a frozen yogurt shop that just happened to be across the way.
Back in business! We made it home with Little Brother only eating a minimal amount of styrofoam. Just 6.5 hours to get home, although breakfast took about an hour or so.
As an added bonus to the day, Jose decided that he was unable to get Big Brother to swim practice that started 2 hours after we got home. We took a quick shower to scrape off the layers of grime then Big Brother and I hopped on the Bullitt (I wasn't going to risk him falling asleep again) and sped off. We arrived just in time (it was 9 more miles each way and I will admit that I wasn't thrilled to be doing it). I was drenched in sweat but Big Brother had a fantastic class followed by another class to make up for a session we had missed.
Then, I did what anyone would do in my position--having ridden 39 miles, 9 more to go, Big Brother having just swum for an hour, it was 102+ outside, and dinnertime--we went to Costco! For just under $4 (because that was all the cash I had), we got a giant slice of pizza to share and a HUGE ice cream (which melted almost immediately and turned into the milkshake I had been craving this whole time).
We got lots of great compliments about our bike and in my snarky mind, I giggled that I was probably the only one who had actually burned off the calories we were about to eat. I shut down a guy who asked how much I paid for the bike by replying with "how much did you pay for your car?" I wasn't in the mood. I had heard all the roadies who passed us today exclaim "Wow, that's quite a load you've got there!" and was tired of all the attention.
Turns out that Big Brother was pretty tired of it, too.
He went straight from the box to bed and has only been up once to pee.
Every part of my body hurts when I move, my arms are sunburnt, and the Bullitt's pedal took a chunk out of my heel. Tomorrow, I demand a morning to sleep in.
Our first trip this morning was our usual Saturday trip to coffee and the Farmer's Market.
It was the second trip of our day that made the biggest impact. We needed to get out of the house and the best way to get kids out of the house is by offering ice cream at the end of a bike ride. This time, the boys rode on their own.
It was 4 miles round trip. Little Brother strode along on his Strider, taking a couple breaks to hitch a ride on Jose's skateboard and once in the Bullitt until he asked to get back on his bike. Big Brother, on the other hand, rode the entire way. Most of the time, he was on the sidewalk but occasionally in the street next to me. He's getting more and more steady on the bike and it's just about time to raise the seat even higher. It's still really nerve-wracking having him in the street since he's not clear on his left and rights and it's difficult to communicate directions. Luckily, we've been riding on calm, wide streets. The sidewalk isn't really any safer since every driveway has to be treated as an intersection and drivers aren't always paying attention to people on the sidewalk, even little kiddos. It's a sad world we live in when kids aren't safe riding their bikes in their own neighborhood.
The benefits for the boys riding are well worth my heightened heart rate.
These boys love it and they're on the road to independence. These are skills that will last a lifetime.
You know the best part, these boys never go to sleep easily but after a day on the bike, they never sleep better. These guys were asleep in minutes. Last night, Big Brother was up until 10pm. Biking is amazing and that shows in it's purest form through the tiny bodies of children. Kids and bikes are a natural combination and our culture has denied this wonderful pairing. Let's work together to bring them back together. Quickly! Slow the car drivers down and make them accountable for their actions, teach children to ride safely and predictably and we can all get along.
We need more of this. Pure joy!
I forgot our daycare's rule about taking 24-hours before coming back and scrambled in the morning to figure out what to do with Big Brother since he had had a couple of shots the day before. I decided that since he's so awesome, I'd just attempt to sneak him into work at Practical Cycle and hope Tim didn't notice.
Of course, we just had to stop for some coffee beforehand.
Lo and behold, we pulled up to one of our favorite shops, Old Soul Weatherstones in Midtown, and saw this spiffy looking Bullitt parked out front! I knew that we had sold one on Father's Day (best Father's Day present ever! I should know because our Bullitt was my Mother's Day/Birthday/Anniversary/every-gift-for-the-rest-of-my-life present and I regret NOTHING!).
Big Brother and I got to hang out with these guys for a few minutes. The kiddos instantly bonded over being cargo bike kids and having awesome helmets. Check out the great tiara! I think my kids need tiaras. For safety. Or something like that. Our Bullitt Buddy, Paul, is a road biker. You might have been able to tell by the stark contrast between our seat:handlebar height ratios. I love that the Bullitt is really customizable in that way. His bike has the standard Bullitt kid set-up while mine has the custom box made by the folks at Splendid Cycles. My box fits two kids better side-by-side but it certainly gives it a more "homemade" look while Paul's is sleek and fancy.
I love that we're getting to the point where cargo bikes are popping up everywhere. It seems like I can't go a day without running into another family-biker!
After coffee and bike-chatting, my new intern and I rode to work. Tim was very nice about having an extra body in the shop and Big Brother was amazing. He sat an entertained himself for about 3.5 hours until 'Nama could come and pick him up. Except for the occasional "MOM! HEY MOM! MOM! LOOK AT THIS, MOM! MOM! MOM! MAMAMAMAMAMAMAMAMAMAMAMAMA!!!!!!" I barely needed to keep an eye on him. Tim was incredibly tolerant. Big Brother was especially enraptured with Practical Cycles newest toys--the bicycle Playmobil sets. We didn't get the horrible "bike-crash" set though. It is really hard to find bicycle toys these days. Kids are indoctrinated into car-culture early on with their tiny motorized cars, Hot Wheels, Disney Cars movies, etc. I even saw a Disney Cars bicycle at Costco! I will admit, however, BB found the bicycle cop's tiny plastic gun immediately and focused a lot of his play with finding the bad guys and chasing them down. That gun may disappear next time I'm at work.
Big Brother and I have been having lots of fun time together, thanks to bikes! Today was a rough day. Little Brother refused to nap and both boys were bouncing off the walls but exhausted. Luckily, Jose got home right after LB finally passed out and BB and I rode the Bullitt to swim class. Now that we know the route is fun and easy, I was comfortable taking the giant RV bike. On the way home, we decided to take the long way back (an extra 2 miles going the other direction on the ARP). Big Brother wanted to lay down so I unbuckled him while we were on the trail. As we were getting off the parkway, I hit a bump while he was leaning over the edge and he bumped his nose. It was our first Bullitt casualty (if you don't count Jose's horrible mishap on his first ride). Big Brother was fine after a little water break and a kiss but I kept him buckled for the rest of the ride home.
One bummer was that when I was trying to put the sun shade on the bike today, I ended up stripping the set screw. I was going to have to move the mounting spots anyway because the poles hit my handlebar when I turn. Now, I'll just have to make a couple new changes as well.
Shall we remember Jose's infamous inaugural ride? Yes.
Makes me laugh every time!
Like many others, my dad was the one who taught me to ride a bike. It was so long ago that I actually don't remember learning. I'm pretty sure I was riding on two wheels by 5. I do remember riding my tricycle to a nearby parking lot with my dad and brother and riding around and around and around for hours (it felt like). I can still hear the squeak-squeak, squeak-squeak of the pedals. Biking has always been second nature to me. It's in my blood. Both my parents were avid bikers--my mom crossed the country when she was 20. Later, she and my dad moved from Santa Cruz to Davis with only what was strapped to their bikes. They travelled extensively by bike and train until my brother and I came along. When we moved to Stockton, our biking options were seriously limited. Stockton lacked and still lacks a decent biking infrastructure. The only way we could bike farther than our little neighborhood was by driving our bikes somewhere. My dad, however, is pretty fearless and he still used his free time to explore the levee roads or ride out into the country. As soon as we all left Stockton, we all picked up biking regularly again. My dad barely drives because he commutes everywhere by bike and then rides 40-60 miles on the weekend for fun. It's pretty easy to figure out where I picked up my biking-bug.
Also, luckily for me, I married a wonderful guy who turned into a great dad who supports and encourages my crazy biking ideas.
I'm so grateful to have these two wonderful dads in my life. I know that with their awesome influence, we're going to have two incredible boys riding on their own adventures very soon.
More cargo biking fun!
On Friday, we drove down to Stockton to have an awesome day with our besties. Totally worth driving! The boys were asleep within a few minutes of driving home and stayed asleep for the rest of the night. We didn't bike much that day but it was fun and full nonetheless.
We made up for all the driving on Saturday when we first stopped at our neighborhood farmers' market then got ready to go camping in our friend's backyard across town. I chose the Mundo because I needed to carry more bulky stuff than the Bullitt can handle and because the roads are pretty crazy for part of the route and the Mundo is often more maneuverable and narrower in tight places.
Our friends, Jen and her son, joined us on their Mundo. Jen had mapped out an awesome route through the neighborhoods and nearly skipped past all the busy arterials. It was so much nicer than the other times I'd ridden up. We had shade, quiet streets, and great conversations. Riding to go camping is fun but it's even more fun with friends.
Camping was so much fun! The boys ran around like crazy--it was the best yaya time, ever!
We rode home this morning, again with our Mundo buddies. It was nice and cool and quiet. The one section on Watt Ave. is horrible, as always but we were soon on the American River Parkway. There's some weird construction about to happen but I don't know what's going on. From what I can tell, there's a good chance that the Watt exit is going to be closed for a long chunk of time. That's going to be pretty annoying for many riders if there's not an easy alternative. If anyone has some info, I'd love to hear it.
It was a 12 mile ride home. Little Brother had conked out within a mile but woke up midway to join in the big boys' conversations. When we got back, Big Brother actually asked to take a nap. They were asleep in minutes and stayed asleep for three hours.
I had to get ready for our evening Kidical Mass ride and it was almost impossible for me to wake up from my own cat nap. Luckily, our friends were coming by to ride with us and use the Mundo. That was the push I needed to drag myself up and get a move on.
Little Brother was the only one who was awake so he was the lucky one to join us. There was no way for me to wake up the big guy so we left him behind with papa.
There were 20 riders at Kidical Mass! We started with a picnic dinner then a short ride along the parkway and into Old Town. From there, everyone broke into smaller groups to head to their respective homes.
It was the best way to get reenergized for the coming week. It was an incredibly busy weekend but was so full of friends, biking, and fun that I couldn't think of a better way to spend my free time.
The very best part of the whole weekend was coming home to my cheery big boy and watching him do this:
I am so proud of this boy!
We did make it home from the Ryde in one piece, thankfully! The trip home was pretty similar to the way there. It was slightly less terrible though, probably because there was slightly less traffic than Saturday and we had just had a lovely night's sleep without having been woken up by children at 6am. Still, it wasn't much fun. We had a strong headwind and the same speedy drivers. I didn't get honked at until we got closer to town, though. That was nice. I always wonder why drivers have enough time to lay out on their horns but not so much thought given to tapping their brakes. It takes about the same amount of energy.
Still, even a bad bike ride is still a bike ride. The experience might not have been what I had expected but it was an adventure and some great time together with my hubby. I look forward to trying out some of the alternate routes that have been suggested to avoid the 160 traffic and maybe trying it again on a weekday when the roads aren't full of wine-soaked drivers.
It has been nonstop action since we got back, too. I managed to make it to work at Practical Cycle (which was perfect timing because our BionX Breezer's front wheel had gone wonky and needed attention) after our trip and squeeze in some more biking classes through the Safe Routes To School programs in both Natomas and Citrus Heights. I'm pretty brain-fried at the moment.
Some exciting news--Jose's mastered the Bullitt! He had to lower the seat to make himself more comfortable but he felt good enough to take the kids to daycare for the first time! And, he didn't crash!
It was really cool to see the kids in the Bullitt from another angle other than behind them. They are just too flippin' cute!
Today was a great example of why we need two kid-toting bikes. Jose took Big Brother to a Giant's game by riding the Mundo to the train and I dropped the little monster off with my mom so I could drive to the biking class in Citrus Heights with Dan Allison. The irony isn't lost on me that I drive to a class to teach kids to use bikes as transportation. It's kind of like flying around the world in jets to warn about the dangers of global climate change.
However, I did get to put some of my new bike mechanic skills to the test--adjusting derailleurs and brakes, tightening stuff, and just looking cool while playing with the program's new Bike Friday student bikes. These aren't the typical Bike Friday folders but are incredibly adjustable to fit a huge range of people--from third graders up to real adult-like people. They were sent over without much quality control and have too many variations and a few problems. We weren't able to fix everything but that's what a real mechanic and warranty service is for.
The most ridiculous comment of the day came from a teacher who walked over to see what we were doing. "Teaching biking? Really? Isn't that what parents are supposed to do? First it was tooth-brushing, now it's biking! Are we going to be forced to pay for bikes for kids, now?" As if there are better things for our taxes than buying kids bikes. Dan pointed out (to me, not to her, sadly) that one single freeway onramp could pay for a new bike for every single child in the district.
It's always pretty horrible driving around in a car but it's even worse driving around in the suburbs! There are so many lanes of traffic, confusing signs, nonexistent speed limits, and really depressing pedestrian/bike infrastructure. It's easy to see why people who live in these areas "need" a car. The less I drive, the less I take driving for granted. Today, I watched a man tie his necktie with both hands while driving past a school in the morning. Ben Marans said on Twitter this morning: "It pains me to see so many ppl behind the wheel who treat driving as a secondary activity to eating, make-up, texting, reading, etc."
So to make up for it, here is a photo of how awesomely cute you could be while waiting for public transportation:
And then, because you're not exhausted from driving, you'll look like this:
Doesn't that look like more fun?
This is us. We're fun.