A year plus a few days ago, I took the plunge into bike commuting. Back then, I didn't know whether I'd love it or loathe it, but I was cautiously optimistic.
It took me less than a month to cancel my work parking pass. And though I kept waiting for winter to discourage me into reactivating it, I'm still sitting here, parking-pass-free.
The way Cory feels about commuting by bike seems to sum up my feelings, too: I don't always leave the apartment/work excited about riding, but every time I arrive at my destination, I'm glad I did it.
That even holds true in the winter, shockingly. (Of course, I'd feel differently if I didn't live with a bike guru who got me in good shape, equipment-wise, for snow riding.)
I am definitely not as committed to it as many other riders are. I can fairly easily find an excuse to drive to the grocery store that's only half a mile away from the apartment.
If I cheat on my bike often enough, though, I remember why I prefer it — I hate paying for parking, especially now that I got out of the habit of doing it, and I dread parallel parking.
(So don't think I have some higher moral reasons for biking, or that I'm self-righteous about it. It's laziness in a different form.)
And I also start to feel guilty about driving if I do it too much now. I'm an abstainer, not a moderator, so I tend to expect 100 percent commitment from myself.
Sometimes when I wish I'd burned calories and not fuel/money, I have to remind myself that more often than not, I take advantage of the fact that bike commuting *is* practical for me. (Again, I don't want to sound like a bike evangelical — not everyone is in the right position to do it. No judgment here.)
I guess the takeaway from this particular post is that if I meet up with you and I have helmet hair or give off a faint odor of perspiration, you'd better either deal with it or make excuses not to hang out. The Shrimp isn't getting put away anytime soon.