When pedestrians drive.

As an initial disclaimer, side note, preamble or whatever you want to call this introduction, I would like to say that I am not going to make a habit of posting on the weekends.  I try to stay away from a computer screen most weekends, but I have made a solemn promise to myself to do as little as possible in order to recover from my schedule over the last few months.  Also, my day yesterday was a little insane, and so instead of waiting until Monday I thought I should go ahead and share.

Fade to Thursday afternoon when someone at work asked me if I could attend a meeting at 2 p.m. in Santa Ana the following day.  I would not need to actually say anything at the meeting, but show up, listen, and take notes.  In particular, I needed to listen to one very specific part of the meeting to prepare for the next week.  I know, this sounds exciting already.

Around 8 p.m. I thought, well my day is going to be a little crazy up until the time I need to leave for Santa Ana, so I better reserve LAX CarShare to make sure I make it on time.

Fast forward to 12:22 p.m. Friday.

12:22 p.m.  – Internal dialogue: “I’m starving.  I don’t have time to get lunch before I need to leave.  Hmm, I should actually walk to the carshare now.

12:45 p.m. – Internal dialogue: “Why am I still in this office?  Crap, I really need to go.  But my friend said traffic shouldn’t be that bad.”

1:12 p.m. – Internal dialogue:  “&%!@%$(#…why am I leaving so late.  I’m never going to make it.”

1:34 p.m. – Listening to the radio:  “Traffic on I-5 heading South looks bad today.  Normal

This was taken more than a year ago driving back from Santa Ana. You think I would have learned. Apparently, I'm slow.

Friday afternoon traffic and we are getting reports of an accident that is slowing the flow from Norwalk to Anaheim.”

1:35 p.m. – Internal dialogue:  “Huh, well I’m so happy to just now be reaching Norwalk.  I’m never going to make it.”

1:42 p.m. – Internal dialogue:  “Please, to whoever might be listening, please please please help me make it.  Can you possibly transport me to Santa Ana or magically make traffic disappear for just a few moments.”

1:47 p.m. – Internal dialogue: “I wonder whether a bike would be faster.  That reminds me, I wanted to watch that video on Flights vs. Bikes.  Note to self, watch the video when I get home.”

1:57 p.m. – Internal dialogue: “omgomgomgomgomgomgomgomgomgomgomg.”

2:04 p.m. – Parking lot found, grab notepad and pen, and lock car.

2:05 p.m. – Sprinting from parking lot a block away to the eighth floor of the building.

2:08 p.m. – Room located, pausing for a second to catch my breath and wipe my brow, walk into the room.  The meeting has already started.

2:08:22 p.m. – OK, now let’s talk about X.  Internal dialogue: “I don’t know how I made it for this topic on the schedule, but thank you.  Talk about timing.  One more second and I would have missed this single reason I drove to Santa Ana in the first place.”

2:52 p.m. – Slowly walking to LAX CarShare to begin the long trek back to DTLA.

My return trip was much quicker, but I was mentally exhausted by then so the only thing left to do was finish the day and go out with my friends.  Suffice it to say, I’m not going very far this weekend, and I’m sticking to my basic mode of transportation:  walking.

Advertisements

CWBY LMO

Have you ever felt like a zoo animal?  You know, everyone is staring at you but you don’t know why.  You start to think: did I put my shirt on backwards this morning?  Is my fly down?  Wait, I’m in a skirt.  Crap, is my skirt see-through?

Courtesy of LAX CarShare website

Oh, what’s that?  I’m not what’s peaked your interest.  I see, you’re pointing at the lovely Nissan Versa with the LAX CarShare logo on its side.  You want to talk about it?  Sure, I’ll talk to anyone.  Just waive me down.

To my chagrin – alright, that’s not true because I’m very proud and excited for Melissa at LAX CarShare – on Sunday night all of the cars in my regular pickup area were checked out.  It was amazing to see.  The only car available for the time I needed was at Union Station.  Now you must all realize that I was checking the schedule about an hour before I needed to leave as my super hero procrastination abilities had reached a whole new level.  So an hour before and I’m still able to grab a car is pretty amazing.

Well, no problem, I’ll make my way to Union Station and find the car there.  How hard could it be. Continue reading

Competitive Carsharing

I had the great fortune over the last few weeks of requiring the use of a car more often than usual.  What I find amusing about this is coming to the realization that I do not own the car.

I know that may seem like one of the most ridiculous realizations to have several months after selling my own car and starting to use a carshare — yes, an emphasis is on the share.  However, it did not fully set home until I found myself annoyed with another driver who is obviously much taller than me and seems to use the carshare as much as I do.

Over the weekend I got into the car and for the millionth time I could not reach the pedals.  I thought “some people are so rude moving my seat around all the time.”  Granted, I was having a bit of a bad day and already annoyed with the world.  Luckily, I came to my senses rather quickly after having that thought flit through my brain.  It’s not my car.  That’s the whole point.

My final realization was much more amusing.  “I don’t push the seat back when I’m done driving.”  Sorry, tall driver.  I will try to remember to scoot the seat back just a little next time.  And, by the way, you left your flip flops in the back.

I think I'm forgetting something…

It’s the Friday before a long weekend.  I, like many other hard-working members of society, made an executive decision to work from home today.  It seemed like the perfect plan.  I woke up early, took the pup for a walk, had a cup of coffee and chatted with my roommate for a bit, and then sat down to do a little work. 

But I had this weird feeling.  I’m forgetting something.  I went through the list of things I do in the morning.  Shower?  Check.  Brushed my teeth?  Check.  Fed the dog?  Check.  No matter how hard I thought, for the life of me I could not figure out what I was forgetting.

It was at 8:43 a.m. when my memory returned.  Slowly I started to think about how hungry I was.  I began rummaging through the fridge and cabinets in the kitchen.  Then the following thoughts struck me in succession.

1) If I had gone into work today, there would be breakfast because every Friday someone brings in breakfast for the office. . .

2) I wonder who is bringing breakfast today. . .

3) *@#%*&@$#(!@)(^!&*(@!!!

That’s right.  By 8:45 a.m. I finished my time/how much do I have to carry analysis and decided I needed a car.  By 8:52 a.m. I threw on torn up jeans and the t-shirt I wore last night.  By 8:57 a.m. I had the carshare reserved.  By 9:02 a.m. I was out the door and off to the grocery store.  By 9:33 a.m. my office had an assortment of pastries and fruit to choose from for their morning sustenance.

To relay this back to a New York versus Los Angeles debate, I wish we had more bodegas within walking distance of my apartment and cabs within hailing distance to take me to my office when I’m carrying a crazy load of food and a jug of milk.  All that aside, I say 45 minutes between realizing my memory is bad to walking into the office door with an armload of goodies, though I was a bit disheveled, is not so bad.

I think I’m forgetting something…

It’s the Friday before a long weekend.  I, like many other hard-working members of society, made an executive decision to work from home today.  It seemed like the perfect plan.  I woke up early, took the pup for a walk, had a cup of coffee and chatted with my roommate for a bit, and then sat down to do a little work. 

But I had this weird feeling.  I’m forgetting something.  I went through the list of things I do in the morning.  Shower?  Check.  Brushed my teeth?  Check.  Fed the dog?  Check.  No matter how hard I thought, for the life of me I could not figure out what I was forgetting.

It was at 8:43 a.m. when my memory returned.  Slowly I started to think about how hungry I was.  I began rummaging through the fridge and cabinets in the kitchen.  Then the following thoughts struck me in succession.

1) If I had gone into work today, there would be breakfast because every Friday someone brings in breakfast for the office. . .

2) I wonder who is bringing breakfast today. . .

3) *@#%*&@$#(!@)(^!&*(@!!!

That’s right.  By 8:45 a.m. I finished my time/how much do I have to carry analysis and decided I needed a car.  By 8:52 a.m. I threw on torn up jeans and the t-shirt I wore last night.  By 8:57 a.m. I had the carshare reserved.  By 9:02 a.m. I was out the door and off to the grocery store.  By 9:33 a.m. my office had an assortment of pastries and fruit to choose from for their morning sustenance.

To relay this back to a New York versus Los Angeles debate, I wish we had more bodegas within walking distance of my apartment and cabs within hailing distance to take me to my office when I’m carrying a crazy load of food and a jug of milk.  All that aside, I say 45 minutes between realizing my memory is bad to walking into the office door with an armload of goodies, though I was a bit disheveled, is not so bad.

*The* LAX CarShare Conversation.

It’s my favorite conversation that happens ALL THE TIME.  It involves phrases like:  “Seriously, you don’t own a car” and “How do you possibly live in Los Angeles without a car” and my favorite “are you crazy?!”  As to the last question, it remains to be seen.  As to the first two.  YES, IT’S TRUE.  I DON’T OWN A CAR.

Then the conversation always continues:  “Well don’t you need a car sometimes?” or “How did you get there if you don’t have a car?”  Wake up and smell the gasoline (OK, don’t, that’s really not healthy.)  Anyway, today I was FORCED to travel to the outskirts of the world…Malibu.  I find Malibu fascinating.  I don’t know what everyone out there does for a living, but I want in.  Going surfing in the middle of the day sounds awesome.  However, getting to Malibu and seeing those surfers and then back to downtown in under…a million hours…required a car.  I cannot stress enough how much I love LAX CarShare.  Without it, I’m sure I would have broken down and gone back to the world of car ownership.  Not having that responsibility is amazingly freeing.  And yet…I can drive to Malibu at the drop of a hat.  It’s super easy, really.  And while I love this conversation that has an official title now because I’ve had it so many times, it would be fun if the LAX CarShare idea was not so alien to everyone I meet.

Now for the exciting part.  You all know you want to be LAX CarShare members too.  I want more shared cars in Los Angeles, not only downtown.  For everyone who says “well you can do that because you live and work in downtown,” all I can say is sure it takes a little more thought and some adjustment, but don’t knock it until you try it.

IF YOU ARE INTERESTED IN JOINING THE LAX CARSHARE FAMILY SIGN UP NOW!!  Even better, enter the promo code “Be Green” and let them know that you learned of this deal through my blog (Flat-Footed) for 10% off the sign up fees.  It’s worth it.  I love my life without a car and yet…I have a car whenever I need it.