Thursday, September 18, 2014

Considering a Moped

I just wrote a blog post on +RGV Life about riding to McAllen on the bus. I am a willing bus rider. I enjoy driving a car on occasion; but, most of the time, I don't really like driving. Even so, I think there is a place for having multiple modes of transportation available to you.

I'm not a hipster or save the planet type of guy. I am more inclined towards using the right tool for the job. If, for example, you need to go buy a six pack of beer at the convenience store, you don't need to drive your car or truck over there when you could just jump on a scooter and pppppppppp your way over there, and back.

If you want to visit somebody across town, you could ride your motorcycle over and back. Unless you are expecting to have a passenger, you don't need a four-wheeled vehicle.

To drive the point home, you use a bike, moped, motorcycle, or car depending on your particular needs. Using a car for everything seems to me like overuse of a single asset. You can reduce wear and tear on your $30K vehicle by using your $300 bike, $2000 moped, or $3000 motorcycle. And, if you spread the use out by actual need, you prolong the lives of each.

So, as a part of a family's multimodal arsenal, I think bus riding should also be an option. You save yourself the driving, parking, and maintenance troubles by riding a bus.

But, let's circle back to the moped thing. Biking to work is out of the question. It is too far to ride there without being drenched in sweat. You're damn right I'll get there; but, I won't be presentable. I can ride the bus; but, it takes 2 hours.

I don't want to drive our van to work because it's just me.

A motorcycle might work; but, I don't think I'll get the full benefit in stop and go traffic. A motorcycle would be great for highway driving, in my opinion.

A moped would be better for stop and go driving. The downside is that mopeds are slow and not suited for major streets. So, assuming that I avoid the major streets and take the back streets, I may be better off. The back streets have lots of stops, slow speed limits, and fewer vehicles. I think I could easily put-put my way to work on a moped on days that I need to divert from bus routes and schedules.

I don't intend to replace bus riding entirely. I just want an option. Having options isn't bad, right?
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