There are unique—even romantic ways to live life, and to drive to our eventual death.
Last year 23 people died as a result of being struck by lightning. Twenty-one people died as a result of a molasses truck explosion in 1919.
I have to say, if I’m going to die I’d prefer it to be something interesting and unique. There is something oddly romantic about being struck by lightning or going up in a fiery blaze.
All this said, I have made a decision about how I DO NOT want to live my life, and meet my maker. I don’t want to die in my car. Thousands of people do every year. I just don’t want to be one of them. It seems like such an ordinary way to go.
Plus besides my pursuit for uniqueness in life and eventual death, I simply just don’t like driving.
It’s a very American, and even more so, suburban ideal to own and drive a car. We relish having a car that starts when you push a button so we don’t strain our wrists lifting up a key and we franticly throw our belongings onto the passenger seat in the morning so that we can turn on the seat warmer as quickly as possible, lest our bums are a bit chilly. Driving just seems a bit excessive.
Over the past couple months my concept of transportation has changed completely. I went from living in a suburban environment driving 25 miles each way for work, to living in an urban environment, sans car, working wherever there is wifi.
I think of myself as recovering from severe car dependency. The thought of walking somewhere seemed inconceivable. The thought of walking had me reaching for my keys and taking the bus meant “wasting” undue travel time.
As I’ve started taking the bus and walking places, my feelings about driving have become even more cemented. The prospect of circling around for parking is loathsome compared to walking from the bus stop. Instead of stopping to fill up my gas tank, my bus pass reloads automatically.
Convenience aside, what I’ve learned by giving up my car, is that walking and taking the bus stimulate the brain far more than driving alone. Instead of monotonously going through the motions while driving, being on the bus surrounds you with people who are all unique and have their own stories.
Creative people need stimulation from the world around them and it’s really hard to get that in a car. Giving up driving has been one of the better choices I’ve made since moving up to San Francisco.
Author Chris Wyman is a modern day renaissance man, a philosopher and a reality sculptor. He believes in living a deliberate life of dreams actualized.
Vintage looking Public transport tramway on a bridge over River Po in Turin, Piedmont, Italy image courtesy of Shutterstock.