I have a dilemma that I feel should be simple.

I believe in reducing my dependence on inefficient and unsustainable energy for transportation. In other words, I feel that I should drive less, and walk/bike/bus more. I’ve made the changes in some ways – when I go to NYC now, I bus.

There are other parts of my life where it isn’t feasable – going to the sanctuary, for example. I could get within 10 miles on bus, but that’s it. Maybe a little closer. It could be argued that I could then hop on a bike, but the weather is very often not suitable, at least not for me. In addition, I imagine it would take 2.5 – 3 hours each way. That’s a lot of time.

Going to work, a quick 20 minute car ride would turn into a 2 hour public transit trip. Each way! That seems unreasonable to me. I could do it, sure, but I feel like it is crazy to expect it of myself.

And so this is the dilemma. An additional location is opening up for work. It would take me an hour on public transit, 20-25 minutes driving. They’re taking names of people voluntarily putting themselves on the list to move. It will cut some people’s driving commute pretty much in half. For others it would double it. They won’t allow us any kind of work-from-home options nor alternate work schedules that would allow us to limit the number of days we had to drive to work, so it is nice that they’re being reasonable about the location thing. They are running out of room in our building, or rather they ran out of room months ago, so they need an additional location, but they easily could have enforced teams sticking together, and made the decision for everyone who would go where.

I haven’t put myself on the list to move to that building. Yet. I am thinking about it.

And it seems like it should be a no-brainer, you know? An hour, that’s not really a big deal. Though thinking about the fact that it is bus-metro-bus with 40 of the 60 minutes being spent waiting for connections…and imagining that in winter months or any bad weather it would be painful…still, how is that different from anyone else dealing with public transportation?

This is a gripe of mine with the public transit in the area. Perhaps I simply expect too much, but 75% of the time (guessing), the places I want to go are easier, faster, and cheaper (even with the high price of gas and traffic in the area) to get to by driving than by public transit, and often by a factor of 2 or 3.

And so I find myself not putting my name on the list, and feeling guilty. At least if I was at that other location, I’d be in a position where public transit was something of an option.

I frustrate myself. If I believe in it, what is a little inconvenience?

jeremy at ps

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