Scourge and Transparency

The Rise and Fall of Advanced Social Journalism during the Early Twenty-First Century

Driving – besides reproduction and paying taxes it is the most important thing a human being must do.

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As many of you are so weirdly enthusiastically aware I do not drive a car, nor am I able to. I am without a driver’s licence. Not for any medical, biological, religious or ethical reason do I not have my class G2 or above Ontario driver’s licence. I’m just too lazy or apathetic towards the idea of getting my licence at this point my life, never mind actually owning a vehicle. The reason I’m bringing this up is because this fact does not bother me all that much, but it seems to really vex and confuse – even annoy – people that I can’t legally drive a car. I don’t know why but I’ve actually had people seem angry with me for not getting my licence. And not because I’m dependent on them in anyway it is just the simple idea of me not driving a car that seems to get under some people’s skin.

Of course, it’s not like I’m sixteen and everyone is getting their licence with me the only one not. That’s obviously long passed (I just turned twenty-four years of age). And I’m in no-way mooching rides off people left and right. I usually take the bus or carpool with someone to work (providing gas money, of course) and walk or bus to class. If I’m going out and someone’s driving I’ll hop in the fucking car, however when I go out I usually get intoxicated enough to be unable to operate a vehicle if I had the means. So it’s not like I call people to give me a ride to buy beer or go to the grocery store – there are other ways of getting to these places outside of sitting in a car by one’s self.

And, yes, I admit there will be a time when I must take on the responsibility of owning and driving a vehicle regularly, among other duties. But right now I can get by fine walking/busing/getting rides with the lifestyle I lead.

What I just find so astonishing is that at least sixty percent of the time I tell someone I don’t have a licence I am met with uptight bewildered anxiety.

            “Wouh, wouh, wouh! You DON’T have your licence?!”

And then, like a kid finding out where babies come from, they ask me the obvious question:

            “So what do you do???”

            And I say, “I actually offer blow-jobs to drivers on the street to take me three blocks at a time…what the fuck do you think I do?!”

Has anyone heard of using his or her feet to go to the corner store? Or, god-forbid, walking to work? What is fucked up is that these types of things have become absurd to so many people. I actually get an intolerable amount of pity from many acquaintances, family and friends alike for using any form of transportation besides the motor vehicle.  People I barely know will pull over at bus stops and offer me a ride while talking to me like I’m selling sexual services or panhandling to feed my children.  It is like the people that take the bus are the lowest of the low, the scum of the earth, Orwellian proles, who can’t understand the concept of garages and gas stations and shouldn’t even be allowed to vote. We’re all not prostitutes and crackheads on the bus; most of us are just like you. I know that after you kindly people drop me off at my destination (to which I’ve arrived at significantly early because you pulled me from the horridness of the bus stop) you probably think: “poor fucking bastard, I wonder who puts his clothes on in the morning.”

But what really taps my ass is the genuine anger I get from people for not getting my licence, the intense pressure to get my licence, and the idea that if I don’t get it it’s like I’m having unprotected sex with many partners even though I’ve been tested HIV positive.

People are always saying to me: “you have to get it!”  Really? I have to?! I must?? Is there a time limit? I’m already 24, what if I make to 30 years of age without getting it? Do roadside assistance people track me down and slit my throat? Is there something I’m missing? Does everyone who passes his or her G2 instantly get a heroin injection and receive oral sex simultaneously?

I find it increasingly confusing that so many people are so concerned with how I get to work or school. When I tell people I walked 45 minutes to school everyday for 8 months, some of them, literally, shit their pants (I’ve smelt it). The idea of taking one and a half hours out your day to walk is some fucked up shit to a lot of people. And I agree that is a lot time to just spend walking and fighting the elements (although a lot of it was walking on campus, through the hallways – it’s about 30 minutes on the road). But don’t you see the benefits of using your legs? You know the treadmill at your 50/month membership gym? What you’re doing on that is called “cardio,” it’s an exercise people use to stay healthy and keep their weight down. What’s really interesting is that you can actually walk, and run in fact, in areas other than gyms. Also, believe it or not, it’s actually still free to walk on the sidewalk as of June 2009. 

I love how the same people that go to the gym everyday, and I think it’s great that a lot people want to stay healthy, but so many people will spend several minutes idling their engine trying to look for a parking space 1 minute away from an entrance rather than park in a clearly free space that is a voyage of 5 minutes from their destination. A little more exercise won’t hurt.

I want to also mention once again that the time factor doesn’t necessarily play much of a part in the counter to my present rant. I know a lot of you have places to go, people to see, cheques to cash and sex to have. But a lot of us, me included, spend 80 per cent of our free time reading stupid blogs, watching viral videos and playing online poker. Don’t piss on my shoe and tell me it’s raining, if you don’t have time to walk anywhere than why did you DVR the Intervention marathons on an A&E.?

Many of my eco-friendly readers have probably noticed that I haven’t brought up the most apocalyptic anti-driving argument – the environment. Let truth be told, there is already so much being written and done about needless driving and industrial sloth that I’m not going to broach the subject at this time. Furthermore this is not an anti-driving blog this is a pro-choice or anti-weird-reactions-to-not-driving blog. 

The fact of the matter is that I’m 24 years old and if I haven’t gotten my licence now and without any significant changes to my day-to-day life I won’t be getting it anytime soon. Consequently a lot of you are going to have to take a deep breath and let the sheer shock of knowing someone who doesn’t drive sink in and accept it as fact just like we’ve all had to accept the cold hard truth that Princess Diana is dead and Wayne Gretzky has been traded to LA.

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Written by shanedantimo

June 22, 2009 at 12:36 am

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