Hybridding It

I am on a hybrid electric bus on my way to work. I drove my hybrid electric car to the bus stop. Mother Nature is feeling pretty good about me today. Maybe I can go the whole day without using any eco unfriendly transportation.

Actually, that happens most days, since I drive a Prius.

It's Tuesday, the day I usually commute via alternative means. From mid spring to mid fall, I bike commute part of the way to work. It is too far to bike to work all the way from Cambridge, unless I want to get up butt early, though I did it once. The partial commute is fine though, because I pick up the bus on the east side of Madison, completely avoiding the lemmings congesting the so-called "beltline highway," which is effectively a wall of imbecilic buffoonery between home and work. I am only on country roads for the car leg of the trip.

The bus takes about the same amount of time as bike commuting my "long route," and follows roughly the same path through town, convenient if something happens to my bike or I cannot bike back to my car for any reason. That has only happened once, due to a flat tire on my bike, and only because I was too lazy to change the tube on the bike after a long day at work. I was equipped to do so, I just didn't. Every other time I had a flat, I just changed it. But that doesn't happen often. Anyway, I am getting off topic.

It is a longer commute when I bike or bus, and even though I save some money on gas when I bike, I actually pay slightly more taking the bus than I save on gas. At full fare, the round trip bus journey is $4 (Note to self: Order 10 ride Metro pass online). Even when gas is close to $4/gallon, my Prius still gets 50 mpg. Since bus commuting only shortens my driving distance by 36 miles, I am actually paying more for the bus than I would for gas for those miles.

But those are just the "hard costs" in dollars. It is hard to put a pricetag on the value of bike commuting or bussing. Biking simultaneously kills my daily workout as well as my commute. Bussing gives me peace of mind and the freedom to do creative things on the bus, like writing this post, while someone else drives.

For me, bussing is kind of a zen discipline thing. I am working on a book. I don't know when it will be done, all I know is that finding time to work on it is hard, what with work and music and life in general. Taking the bus forces me to carve out creative time, even if it is only 30 minutes or so when all is said and done (because I usually spend to much time on this pre-writing exercise of writing a blog post to loosen up my creative neurons).

I am going to have to wrap up now, to go do real writing. Don't forget that Tuesday also means jazz night at the Mason Lounge, 9 PM to midnight and totally free admish. I will be flaunting my bass skills the whole night. It looks like drummer MG is back this week as well, after a brief hiatus to go have a kid with his wife. The latter situation appears to be under control.

Sorry about any typos, spelling issues, or grammar mistakes. I cranked this out on the proverbial fly. See ya.

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