Car free, carefree and in desperate need of a lift
Last year, I resolved to buy a car.
My enthusiasm quickly evaporated, however, when I actually started poring through the classifieds and realised the whole thing was going to cost me a substantial amount of cash.
I also became terrified of getting stiffed by some crisp-collared sales-jerk or a bunch of snakes in a floral-print dress disguised as a sweet old lady.
Since then, I have resorted to that special trick we all employ when we fail at something - pretending everything worked out for the best.
These days, I get to tell all my iron horse-owning friends how they’re all chumps because not owning a car is actually fantastic.
It makes me feel like the modern equivalent of the explorers of yore as I walk places and occasionally stop because it’s too hot or I’ve spotted money on the ground.
To be honest, I casually tell them, the fact that other people already own cars really puts me off them.
When I was 17, I crashed into some sort of charity van because I was distracted by one of those costumed Eagle Boys “pizza deal” sign-waving people. What’s to stop some thin’n'crispy-fiend from ploughing into my vehicle in a similar manner?
On a side note, the van wasn’t full of puppies or anything, just food for the homeless.
Statistically, if you never drive, you’re less likely to die behind the wheel - unless you get stabbed behind a ferris wheel. That happens occasionally. There’s also a reduced risk of losing a high-stakes race in an abandoned aqueduct.
It’s also worth noting that my carbon footprint is tiny. By the time I’m 35, I’ll have an entire Amazon-worth of carbon credits stored up, which will come in handy if I ever need to dump a barrel-load of toxic waste in the woods or drive a Hummer.
And look, I really don’t mind catching the train. It doesn’t matter that it’s unjustifiably expensive and endlessly draws money from me like the giant, soul-eating metal leech that is.
Public transport gives me something to complain about every day, which the voices in my head tell me is a vital part of sanity retention. You have your “engine troubles” and I’ve got my “56-year-old man playing Celine Dion too loud”. The whole process gives me an extra 30 minutes each day to judge people.
Yes, friends, freedom is truly mine. For instance, I can laugh at penises drawn in window dust because I know it will never happen to me.
Also, if I leave my shoes in my driveway overnight, I don’t have to worry about people keying them - at least until I get to that age where I’m scared of youths and put padlocks on everything.
I will concede, however, that having boot space would be pretty convenient. Having said that, what’s the point of carrying around cool stuff if nobody else can see it? If I’m carrying a guitar, skateboard or large bag of assorted sporting goods, I want to make damn sure they’re visible so you have to assume I know how to use them.
And one day, when you’re sitting in traffic, imagining all the cars in front of you being incinerated like in that scene in Independence Day, I’ll be walking past you, smiling and whistling some non-descript walking tune. Even though you’ll ultimately reach your destination 500 times faster than me, I’ll always have that moment.
In the meantime, can one of you give me a lift home real quick? Thanks heaps. I’ll owe you one.
Read all about it
Up to the minute Twitter chatter
The latest and greatest
Good morning Punchers. After four years of excellent fun and great conversation, this is the final post…
I have had some close calls, one that involved what looked to me like an AK47 pointed my way, followed…
In a world in which there are still people who subscribe to the vile notion that certain victims of sexual…