Wednesday, April 6, 2011

My Inner-Monologue on Rich People

My friend Paul gave me a statistic today. Most bike commuters are lower and middle class. I think that makes sense. If I could afford expensive cars and high-end electronics, I probably wouldn't have time to ride my bike. I'd be too busy talking to clients on my cellphone and doing important stuff to stimulate the economy.

I was thinking very cynically about this on my ride home tonight. "Look at all these rich people in their large Sport Utility Vehicles," I thought. Then my conscience spoke, "You're not better than them, you know." This is often a struggle I run into as a bike commuter. The idea tries to creep in that I'm somehow better than the non-cyclist commuter. It's really just insecurity coming through. I feel like the little weird-o out there, riding in the cold who doesn't have enough money to drive a car. It's not that these things are true (well, I don't think they are anyway), but it's how I imagine the guy in the lifted one-ton Chevy Silverado perceives me. I think that he thinks that I'm some poor freak who can't make enough to drive, so I ride my bike. Of course, these assumptions are mostly ridiculous, but it's the train that I catch my sub-conscious on every now and then.

The revelation came today that we are all a lot of people running around on grids that we've made and we all have our transportation tastes. Some people are in it for the efficiency (most people, really) and some, like myself, are in it for the scenery. I'll sacrifice some comfort and efficiency to see the scenery, to breathe the air, to live. It's my thing. It isn't for everyone. And that's o.k. Besides I have a thing for big trucks.

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