Advertisement

LJWorld.com weblogs Eco-challenge

Carless commuter discovers hazards of two-legged travel

Advertisement

_Editor's note: Over the next couple of weeks, reporter Christine Metz is undertaking an eco-challenge of her own design. In a quest to live a greener lifestyle, she has set out to go one week without a car, spend a month eating only locally grown food and track how much waste a person produces in a single week. Follow along as she blogs about the highs and lows of the average car-driving, coffee-drinking, trash-dumping girl trying to go green._The commute to the office was supposed to be the easy part.At least that is what I told my friends and co-workers as I was prepping for the challenge of going one week without once starting the car.It was my social life - not work - that was going to involve the temptation to drive. I scoured bus routes, community carpool message boards and even the Amtrak schedule to find a way to get from Lawrence to Kansas City for a Sunday afternoon volleyball game. And I had plotted an across-town bike route so I could attend a Tuesday evening jewelry party.But the 10-block walk to work I had down. I'd done it countless times, high heels and all. It was going to be a breeze. That was before 7 a.m.As I woke to the rumblings of thunder, I realized I might have been a tad overconfident.Yet my optimism remained mostly intact when I peeked outside to see an overcast sky but no rain. I decided to leave the raincoat at home and grabbed the umbrella just in case.Halfway between my house and the office, the clouds broke loose. When I hit Watson Park, I was wet around the edges. My legs had gotten the worst of it. They were soaked from an unsuspecting sprinkler at the corner of Louisiana and Seventh streets.Downtown, as I was heading toward much-needed coffee at La Prima Tazza, the wind flipped my umbrella upside down and the rain turned from a steady stream to a downpour. I cursed myself for putting "walking to work" and "breeze" in the same sentence. By the time I reached the News Center, I was questioning why I would want to give up my car in the first place. I hadn't even walked in the door, and already my enthusiasm for a week sans car and another month of eco-challenges had, shall we say, dampened.Perhaps tomorrow I'll bring the raincoat.

Comments

Sigmund 6 years, 4 months ago

classclown (Anonymous) says: "Why does the Lawrence Journal World has such disregard for its readers?"Why does the Lawrence Journal World have such disregard for its readers?Can't help myself. Anyway cut Ms. Metz a bit of slack, no one died after all.BTW, I enjoyed Christine's article, mistakes and all, and the subject matter is interesting. Hopefully she will quickly grow a very thick skin and write a bit more carefully in the future. As long as you're around I know I will!

Sigmund 6 years, 4 months ago

classclown (Anonymous) says:"Bad grammar and spelling is typically a result of either ignorance or laziness combined with a lack of respect for those intended to read what has been written.[Better] Typically poor grammar and spelling is a result of either ignorance or laziness combined with a lack of respect for the reader.classclown (Anonymous) says: "Why does the Lawrence Journal World has such disregard for its readers?"The LJW doesn't care and the typical LJW reader doesn't know better.

tangential_reasoners_anonymous 6 years, 4 months ago

averado: "My car died this winter, and while the first few weeks were hell, it become rather enjoyable."One of the best things to happen to me as a student ( ALL those years ago ) was the loss of my car. I would discover that the only "hell" was in my head, and once my head acclimated to the change, it relished the long walks more than the destinations reached.

bearded_gnome 6 years, 4 months ago

OMG,sigmund and classy, you guys are really harshing on Metz' attempt to save the world! shame on you; don't you know that in the religeous zealotry of fighting so-called manmade global warming, that all things can be excused if one is taking the right position? besides, she was dripping wet when she wrote this. maybe some water got into her keyboard? ***dear blog author,welcome to the walking community of lawrence. lawrence is really not very walker friendly what with broken or nonexistent sidewalks, roundabouts that make intersections more dangerous for pedestrians to cross, inattentive college scholars driving with little driving experience, and frequent tree/bush overhangs of the actual sidewalks. instead of recording your attempts to "go green," a rather cliche thing ing in these times and oh so politically correct, how about a blog about walking in lawrence?

trinity 6 years, 4 months ago

i enjoyed the article also; but the peak/peek thing? c'mon, anybody past 3rd grade should know the difference. mrs. herron is probably furious! (my 3rd grade teacher to whom i am ever grateful!)

bearded_gnome 6 years, 4 months ago

well said tangy,the walk can be wonderful.

Avery Pearson 6 years, 4 months ago

The hard part is having a car at your disposal. Will power weakens in these situations. My car died this winter, and while the first few weeks were hell, it become rather enjoyable. horrid weather and all. With my car back, though I try to walk as much as possible, rain always tends to destroy my commitment.

bearded_gnome 6 years, 4 months ago

oh, I almost forgot this. Ms. Metz if you're going to walk, I recommend you get a backpack and carry your nice high heels in it along with perhaps other useful things. your feet will thank you and your heels will look nicer for work. get some good walking shoes/boots since lawrence [as noted above] often doesn't have good walking surfaces.Columbia has some good ones that aren't very expensive. as far as I know you have to buy these online now. you do much of your walking to work in your high heels, and you'll be hurting soon.

classclown 6 years, 4 months ago

Bad grammar and spelling is typically a result of either ignorance or laziness combined with a lack of respect for those intended to read what has been written.Having to come across it regularly on many forums on the internet is bad enough, but you are a professional writer. Most of the people that routinely demonstrate their lack of writing skills on said forums as well as comment sections will display anger when confronted about it. They will attempt to cover for their ignorance and or laziness by saying things such as "What does it matter?" or "You knew what I meant.". You however should not be afforded that luxury.As a professional writer you should extend to your readers the courtesy of writing correctly. For you to fail to do so, and for the editors of the publication that you write for to pass it on without being bothered to correct it, demonstrates that neither you or the publication that you work for has any respect for the readers of said publication.Why does the Lawrence Journal World has such disregard for its readers?

classclown 6 years, 4 months ago

By the time someone else reads this LJW may have already corrected the many mistakes. LJW staff is notorious for allowing the readers do their editing for them by waiting for the mistakes to be pointed out to them and then "updating" the story to make the necessary correction. However, I'm not going to point them out. Let's see if they can find them.

classclown 6 years, 4 months ago

Sigmund (Anonymous) says:classclown (Anonymous) says:"Bad grammar and spelling is typically a result of either ignorance or laziness combined with a lack of respect for those intended to read what has been written.[Better] Typically poor grammar and spelling is a result of either ignorance or laziness combined with a lack of respect for the reader.======================================Touche. I knew someone would point out a mistake in my post. I don't know if there is a "law" such as "Godwin's Law" for example, relating to the fact that whenever a person rants on the internet about spelling or grammatical errors, said rant will contain errors of its own. If not, there should be. Anyways, you knew what I meant. :p

alm77 6 years, 4 months ago

Hey, Christine, glad to see your ingenuity and relentlessness, but I think I missed something... why didn't you just carpool? Also, the train sounds awesome. We've thought about taking it for vacation sometime.

Commenting has been disabled for this item.