Yesterday, we made the announcement that our Editor-in-Chief Mia Kohout has been made Vancouver bike share’s new General Manager, and will be stepping back from her day-to-day role at Momentum Mag. In this exciting season of change, we’re taking the opportunity to reanalyze and refocus our own priorities. Momentum Mag has long been an advocate for better cities, healthier communities, and active lifestyles. We’re renewing our commitment to that original mission, and moving forward to curate inspiring content centered around the one thing that makes our communities truly great: cars.
Writing about bicycle-based communities has been a somewhat interesting but ultimately taxing experience, and now that Mia is out of the way, myself and the team are grateful to be able to focus our energies on a mode of transportation that is actually viable. You, our readers, have been incredibly supportive and a source of inspiration over the years, and we hope you’ll be as excited as we are to continue on in this journey towards better cities and stronger communities.
So to start this off with a bang, we’ve compiled a list of the top 10 best reasons to drive absolutely everywhere you go. Spread the word, tell your friends, and let’s get driving!
1. You can leave all of your stuff in the car.
Bicycles are always in the way. They clutter up your already-cramped apartment, and force you to stand uncomfortably close to your coworkers in the office elevator. Cars, however, perform the exact opposite function – they are the perfect receptacle for all of your crap. Accidentally dressed too warmly for the weather? Toss your sweater in the backseat then forget where you put it for two weeks. Finished eating that cheeseburger? Throw that wrapper on the incredibly spacious floor of your private automobile. It’s not littering when you own it! Since you can permanently store your car for free on public land in many urban centers and basically every suburban or rural area, your car in a sense acts as a secondary closet for your home. Put all of your hockey gear in the trunk and just leave it there, car ownership is essentially publicly-subsidized storage for your stuff! Isn’t that great?
2. Climate control is way more comfortable than the actual climate
Climate control is inarguably one of the best things about owning a car. Enabling your complete and total removal from the natural world is a privilege that should not be taken for granted. Pouring rain? No problem, you’re encased in a metal box looking out through a glass windshield which is being frantically wiped clean by two pieces of rubber as you try to navigate the one-ton box down a busy street at 60 mph. Nice and dry. Too hot? No worries, you can pump filtered, artificially cooled air straight into your nostrils and chill that sweat down to a cold stain. Cars afford you the incredible opportunity to never have to interact with your environment in any meaningful way, which, as we all know, can sometimes be uncomfortable. And as the climate becomes increasingly erratic due to something-or-other about glaciers and greenhouses or whatever, it’s going to be ever-more important to have the ability to protect yourself from those pesky elements.
3. Gas and Diesel Smell Really Good
Scent is the one sense most closely tied to memory, and there’s something wonderfully nostalgic about the smell of fuel. It harkens back to summer afternoons spent snacking on Twizzlers in the gas station parking lot while mom filled up the station wagon, or day-long lineups waiting for the ferry with a transport truck idling just to the left. Nothing brings me back to the good old days like the scent of refined petroleum products, and having the opportunity to relive those cherished memories while I fill up my car every day is an experience I wouldn’t trade for anything.
The modern world is far too social. You have Twitter on your phone, Facebook on your work computer, Skype on your home laptop, and the constant looming possibility of your grandparents calling. Taking the bus or riding a bike leaves you even more vulnerable to the threat of an unsuspected conversation with a stranger or casual acquaintance, a tiring possibility which cars thankfully eliminate. When you drive everywhere you go, you can control your social life down the minute, ensuring you never have to run into anyone you know or spend your morning commute making meaningless chatter with Brian from the office over.
5. Driving is really fast
Cars have the capacity to travel at speeds of up to 200 mph (320 km/h) with only the pressing down of a pedal. While most city speed limits are unfortunately only about 30 mph (50 km/h), you can easily compensate for that annoying hurdle by simply going over them. Speeding is never penalized in proportion to its frequency, so you can be relatively certain that you can drive well over the speed limit almost every day with minimal risk of getting caught. After all, the cops have ticketing jaywalkers to worry about. If you get stuck in traffic, which is admittedly very slow, you can make up for it once you’re out by passing every other car on the road, including those traveling in the passing lane.
6. You can bring your friends
A standard sedan fits five people. That’s you and four friends out for a ride or heading off to your favorite beach for a weekend picnic. You can’t bring four friends on a bicycle, so I can’t really imagine any other way they could get there if you selfishly decided to bike. Driving a car is a great social activity, where friends and families can spend quality time being stuck in traffic and looking for parking together. It can be hard to carve out time for your loved ones with a busy schedule, but by driving around the city together you can reconnect while distractedly chit-chatting and making eye contact in the rear view mirror.
7. Cars are way safer than smoking and famine
In 2015, tobacco killed 6 million people. On average, around 7.6 million people die ever year of hunger-related causes. Meanwhile, in 2012, motor vehicles were only responsible for a paltry 1.2 million deaths. Negligible! Furthermore, in 2013, 4,735 pedestrians and 743 bicyclists were killed in traffic in the US alone, so walking or biking is definitely out of the question. Cars also have seatbelts, airbags, and all kinds of safety features to protect you in the unfortunate event that you spin out on black ice and go careening into a ravine.
8. You get to know your local mechanics
Cars need a lot of fixing, and due to their fairly complicated mechanics it’s often not a task you can do yourself. Having to constantly bring your car into the shop every time you need to refurbish your alternator or replace your strut mounts puts you on close personal terms with your local mechanic. Sometimes, you’ll even get an excuse to go to a different part of town you’ve been meaning to check out to find a mechanic who has the specific parts you need that aren’t carried in most shops. Building community at your auto-shop has a certain Springsteen-esque romanticism about it that isn’t available with other forms of transportation.
9. Cars look really cool
It’s a long-accepted fact that cars are babe magnets. From the Cadillac days of the 1950s all the way to yesterday’s release of an affordable Tesla, having the car that everybody else wants is a boost up the social ladder that a bike or bus pass just can’t give you. Appearing cool in public is especially effective in car, since if the people who are in awe of you don’t really look that cool themselves, you can just drive away. If you totally want to chat them up though, you can simply slow down and pull over, find available parking, stop the motor, undo your seatbelt, open the door and get out of the car, walk around it to the sidewalk, and then walk decisively towards them while thinking of something clever to say.
10. You’re bigger than everyone
When you’re in a car, you rule the streets. Being in a car is a chance to assert authority you are otherwise denied in life. You may not be the boss at work, but you’re the boss of your private automobile. Pedestrians and people on bikes are much smaller and more vulnerable than you, so you can easily insist that they move out of your way by revving your engine, speeding, or just forcing them off to the side. Driving everywhere you go is a great opportunity to feel powerful, and take your frustrations out on anyone who impedes your path.
Driving is one of the most enjoyable, empowering activities we are able to do on a daily basis. We’re so happy to finally be able to bring you fresh, insightful content on this revolutionary form of transportation, and we look forward to the coming years of #SmartLivingByCar. Thanks for coming along for the ride with us, happy driving!
Hilary Angus is the Editor of Momentum Mag. She is thoroughly enjoying having free rein of the content production at the moment. @HilaryAngus
Get your FREE copy of: Momentum Mag's Bike Lock Guide
In this guide, we share stats on bicycle theft, the best ways to lock your bike and which ways to avoid, types of locks to use, new technologies combating theft, a directory of brands and much more!
Please select your country and provide a valid email address
Thank you for your submission. Please check your inbox to download the guide!