“The changes that we desire for the world can only begin with what we are willing to do in our own lives.” – James Keye
The above quote comes from an essay entitled Tyranny of Convenience by James Keye it is one of the inspirations behind the title of this blog. Another phrase in Keye’s essay is “the hopelessness of an effortless life” a theme we’ll return to as we draw the connections between owning and using our car and our addiction to convenience. How, in our efforts to avoid effort, we sacrifice our health and wellbeing and that of our environment. Perhaps more usefully we’ll also be documenting and ruminating on the positive effects of not owning a car. This is not an anti-car blog – I love cars! If it’s anything it’s a pro-active transport/anti-sedentary blog – but that’s not a very snappy title is it?
So what do you think of our little middle-class crusade so far? Do you think it’s just another case of the petty bourgeoisie on the latest hobby horse to assuage our First World guilt?
Or do you reckon that we might be just like you and making small steps in the right direction? Putting good intentions into a little worthy action. We’re already reaping a little reward too.
Possibly most importantly, we’re not alone.
In fact, there are quite a few other blogs about rejecting our disposable, inauthentic and unsustainable societies in general and going car-free in particular. We’ve got a reading list as long as our arm and we’ll tell you about some of the blogs we like and why we dig them, as we go along. Here’s some that we have already checked out that got us going.
- Carbusters is the quarterly journal of the World Car Free Network and they publish a thoughtful blog as well.
- A lot of people have said to us, “but isn’t it much harder doing this with a kid?” After all, in this neck of the woods, once one has spawned, it’s more usual to scale up to a people mover than to scale down to a pair of sturdy boots. It’s very early days for us, but we reckon it’s all about not trying to pack too much in, and instead really relishing the stuff you do. There’s a couple of blogs out there, both called Car Free with Kids; that agree. Some particularly interesting stuff on how to raise children that love to walk. Car Free with Kids and the other Car Free with Kids.
- And an excellent post called Tyranny of Convenience from a blog by a woman called Sally Lever, who encourages downshifting, sustainable living and sustainable business. We haven’t read all she has to say, but we like what we have read.
We’ll also be adding our own Blogroll of useful, interesting and related links in the sidebar as we go along. These people are making the effort for all of us, even though it’s not convenient. Why? The answer is in the title of this post. And a little effort can go a long way.
As I tell myself when I’m struggling to knuckle down and work on my art – if not now, then when? If not you, then who?