Writer. Warning: opinions. My lawyer advised a disclaimer, but didn't include any jokes to go with. Damned if I can think of any either.

Houses are the Worst Thing for Cycling.

PHOTO: Archibald Ballantine, Flickr

Why is it that driving, something that is unquestionably awesome, is so god damned boring? No wonder people are texting and tweeting and facebooking as they drive. Getting around the city by car is a tortuous, futile experience. Just as you start to actually progress toward your goal, the light changes, a cop sticks his hand up, or some asshole cyclist gets in front of you. Son of a bitch!

I think one of the biggest problems is houses. Yeah, I said it. Houses.

The American Dream

Let’s say you’ve been lucky enough to meet the man or woman of your dreams and you want to get hitched up and start a family. Congratulations to you and your future pack of pants-tuggers. Now, where are you gonna stick ’em? You need a house, preferably a big one so you can do whatever you like to do on one end and they can get into whatever dangerous mischief takes their fancy on the other end. Quietly, though. Quiet mischief, please.

Now, let’s say you can afford a house that costs $250,000. In town that will buy you a shack so small you have to sleep with your feet out the kitchen window. Plus, it will have been built many years ago, which means it’ll be about as good at holding in heat or cooling as your average shopping cart. The basement, if it has one, will have been constructed entirely of black mold and roach carcasses.

You could buy a condo, of course, but you could also just dig a hole, stick half your money in it, and then have extensive electro shock treatments to forget where it is.

Or you could buy a larger, newly-constructed house in the suburbs. See how devious they are, houses? They make it so easy, the bastards.

We can work it out

Now all we have to do is get your ass to work so you can make some butter to cover all this toast. That’s going to put you back in town, though, unfortunately. Companies just love to stick their headquarters in town.

That means you’re going to have a commute, which means your brain is going to shut off every morning when it isn’t squirming like a toad. They say you’re not supposed to text while you’re driving, but people post funny stuff on the facing book and a little comedy would help break up the monotony. Everyone knows the pain of the rush hour drive.

It doesn’t have to be this way, though. You could ride a bike.

Just try it, dummy

Yeah, a bike. Just like when you were a kid. Sure, there are concerns about safety. You’ll be at risk of being flattened by one of the mindless zombies scrolling through their twitter feed at the wheel. They will roar around you with engines screaming, only to slam on the brakes and turn right in front of you. That can be extremely irritating when it isn’t actually killing you.

Here’s what riding a bike will do for you, though, and this is why a lot of us pedaling dorks do it. That brain miasma that you get in the car goes away.

I know it sounds weird, but if you haven’t ridden a bike in a while, you really should give it a shot. It’s possible to get on a bike and get places without praying for your own death merely to give you an excuse to stop sitting in traffic. You can arrive at work happy rather than numb.

Of course, it might not be a fit if you live too far away for a bike commute to be feasible. If you do, I don’t blame you. I blame houses.