Hey dad, which way to the bus stop?

Dear Dad,

A few years back when I lived in the Miracle Mile area, I recall our first conversation about taking the bus in Los Angeles.  You were recently retired and came to visit quite a bit.  The conversation went something like this (I hate to admit it, but my memory is less than stellar these days):

Dad:  Well, I think I’m going to take the bus into downtown to meet you for dinner.

Me:  Really?  Are you sure?  It’s not that hard for me to drive out and pick you up.

Dad:  No, I’ve been studying the bus maps and I’m fairly sure I can make it.

Me:  Fairly sure, huh.  Well, as long as you’re fairly sure and not merely kinda sure, but semi-worried that you won’t make it.  OK, as long as you are willing to give it an honest go.  Call me if you get lost or in trouble.

Dad:  Trust me, I’ll make it.

Yes, it’s true, I thought you were insane.  Who takes the bus in Los Angeles!  It’s not a small town with only one bus line.  You could have ended up anywhere.  But—though I worried relentlessly and texted you continuously to see where you were every few seconds—you made it.

After I moved to DTLA, you were a bus-riding fiend.  On the day you called to tell me you were leaving a USC baseball game but thought the DASH stopped running and so were walking back, I realized I no longer worried about your adventures on the bus and metro.  I didn’t bat an eye.  I didn’t even offer you a ride.  I waited for you to make it back and bought you a couple of beers in celebration of your return.

Everything is different today.  I don’t own a car.  I willingly ride the bus.  I have met a lot of interesting, though sometimes a little crazy, characters during my travels.

Thank you, dad, for pointing me to the bus stop and showing me that it’s OK to ride the bus or metro in Los Angeles.  I always think of you every time I take public transportation.

Love,

Your Daughter

Image courtesy of http://www.toonpool.com/artists/GBowen_1026

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*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.