walkitout (walkitout) wrote,

Today's Activities include: bicycling

T. went with B. and B. to do the Nashua River Trail for a couple hours. That plus two rounds in the morning and 2 in the evening with me (so 4 miles just with me) seemed to tucker him out pretty good.

R. and I took A. in the stroller down to Julie's Place for breakfast. Yum.

Later we went to a bbq at G.'s house.

The balance of the day was spent in such excitement as providing something for A. to pull herself up on and then let go and try to stand on her own, keeping her from chewing on power cords and similar. Also reading copenhagenize, which is really interesting and cool in a variety of ways.

One thing that keeps coming up in cycling blogs is _how short_ the distances traveled in countries with high rates of cycling. Mikael keeps writing something that is just entirely wrong: "And 50% of Americans live within 8km of their workplace." is the version from copenhagencyclechic in the comments, but he posts a version of it over at copenhagenize as well. I'm not sure precisely what he means: as the crow flies? By America, does he mean to include Canada/Mexico/Brazil/Peru/etc.? But if he means the US, he cannot be correct. Both median and average commute distances in every survey I've seen in years is more than that in miles.

It's hard to imagine how to make it so that those distances are shorter. One way, I suppose, would be for people to bike to public transit stations. Another way would be to focus on non-work trips (to the store, pub, library...) and support in-neighborhood business better thru zoning. Some people over in Flint, MI are talking about compressing their city by razing chunks of it (that are abandoned anyway). But just pretending that those distances are shorter than they are does not seem like a viable solution.

I'm all over the cycling. But when I see that the average distance cycled per year in the _most_ cycling intense country in the world works out to less than a couple miles a day, I feel somewhat discouraged. You'll note what I described T. and I doing earlier today.
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