Wednesday, October 31, 2018

New Outside Column!

My latest Outside column is about how all motor vehicles should be total deathtraps:



I have no doubt we'd all be much better off.

Happy Halloween!


Yours Etc.,


--Tan Tenovo

48 comments:

huskerdont said...

Halloween death machines, you say?

https://www.flickr.com/photos/148313779@N04/45515609062/in/dateposted-public/

HDEB said...

I LOVE the idea of requiring automobile horns to be as loud inside the cabin of vehicles as they are outside. Cars stink, ride a bike : )

Anonymous said...

Yo Pode?

Matt said...

FANTASTIC Article Tan! No seatbelts, only Mom's outstretched arm to keep her kids from going thru the windshield in a hard stop, just like the good ol' days! (Mom had a very strong right arm!) Also, when the price of gas gets up to about $25 a gallon you'd have to be pretty committed to drive that gas guzzling SUV death-machine! That alone would bring down the size of cars and the engines quick.

George Krpan said...

I had the very same thought about manual transmissions and texting. i think that's why the manual transmission is disappearing. Audi no longer offers them. I would never buy a car with an automatic.

Francis Nep said...

I already drive my 1969 Karmann Ghia. 70 mph on the freeway in a 50-year old car - it feels like a deathtrap! I guess I'm ahead of the times...

huskerdont said...

I had to special order my Subaru to get a manual. They said that people don't buy them because they're more difficult to drive in stop-and-go traffic. Maybe driving should be a little difficult, but I suppose people aren't going to go for that.

Anonymous said...

From John Muir’s repair manual for VWs, popularly known as “The Volkswagen Idiot Book”:
If we all constantly drive as if were strapped to the front of the car like Aztec sacrifices so we’d be the first thing hit, there would be a helluva lot less accidents.

Chazu said...

Obesity levels are rising with no end in sight, and testosterone levels "plummeting" across the generations (use the Google to learn more).

My wife is in the medical field, and we have two boys. She's particularly concerned about falling testosterone among males; it starts in childhood and has lifelong adverse outcomes.

The average American man was 5'9" and 175 pounds forty years ago. Now he's 5'9" and 200 pounds. Excess body weight suppresses testosterone production.

Yes, the size of the average American penis is in decline:
https://www.forbes.com/sites/neilhowe/2017/10/02/youre-not-the-man-your-father-was/

Hey, did you know Ford plans to stop production of sedans to focus exclusively on pickup trucks and SUVs? Surely, that has no correlation to fatter drivers with smaller penises.

Blog Drafter said...

Wow, simulacrum and flensing a mere six words from each other. Once again I am in awe.

Do not ride this evening, that is my advice to all.

Anonymous said...

Bravo! I became a much better driver overall after going through the course and receiving my motorcycle endorsement. Let's see them do this in the NFL; take off all the pads and make them go back to playing with just leather skull caps for helmets. "Normal" injuries will most likely increase for a while, but those and "catastrophic" injuries will eventually decrease. You will pay more attention if you know hitting someone is going to hurt you just as bad.

Anonymous said...

in the not too distant future, shopping will likely include...delivery.

bad boy of the south said...

Good article,tan.perhaps operating a flintstone mobile would be apt.
Ah,pizza barn.remember it well.
Oh,and landy's the home of the wedge.
Long gone from what I've heard.

Matt said...

About 7 years ago I was sent to work in Yorkshire England for 3 months. My rental was a stick. No big deal, been driving sticks all my life (still do). Uhm...shifting with your right hand? It doesn't know the pattern! And I can't begin to tell you how many times I smacked my right elbow on the window when I'd get ready to back up and swing my right arm around to look out the back window (and suddenly finding the drivers window there in the way). One thing for sure: Driving over there is a VERY interactive sport! Here in the good ol' US of A we have our coffee, music, phones, long straight roads, kids in the back making a rukus, tons of stuff to take your mind away from what you are SUPPOSED to be doing. Over there I was WAY TOO BUSY to even THINK about picking up my coffee and drinking while driving! (in general IMO they Brits are WAY better drivers than we are....mostly cuz the HAVE to be!) And hey...to prove I'm not a robot I had to identify CARS! What a CRAZY coincidence!

Anonymous said...

Eventually with all biking, but esp. MTB, a cyclist gets a pretty intuitive feeling of what a crash feels like at different speeds and in different environments.

I was pretty late to practice driving, and it was only after 13 years of cycling. It felt like a nightmare at first, and after ~5 hrs it was still a dream I didn't want to be in. I quit without getting a license and resigned to an Ebike.

Anonymous said...

Manual transmissions are old tech. Double clutch paddle shifters are faster, that’s why Audi stopped offering manual. There are still are a few performance cars that have manual available, but they are slower than their paddle shift variants. Manual is kind of becoming like downtube friction shifters, still enthusiasts who wax about connection to the machine, skill and subtlety involved in mastery, etc.

Al said...

If you really need another reason to hate our deadly, diseased, addictive obsession with the automobile, think about all the innocent animals that are slaughtered on our roads. It is estimated that one million animals are killed by motorist every day in the USA. EVERY DAY! If motorist have no empathy for animals that are killed, then what hope is there for motorist having empathy for their fellow humans that are killed or injured. And I doubt that self-driving cars will be any better at saving lives, be it human or animal, because it is still...you got it...a car.

Anonymous said...

Silly troll article. This is conservative thinking. Society never moves forward by barring new technology. Autonomous cars are less fantastic than your turn back car safety and comfort 40 years daydream.

I’m not sure why you hate so hard on self driving cars. They have more potential to improve segregation of pedestrians, cyclists, autos, as well as reduced real estate dedicated to parking. Robot cars should be ally of transportation advocates.

BikeSnobNYC said...

Anonymous 2:29pm,

This may come as a shock, but the column wasn't meant to be taken literally.

I definitely see the potential for self-driving technology. However the notion that everyone's going to get to keep their cars but they're all going to drive themselves and all the sucky stuff about car dependence will simply go away is silly. (Plus I doubt we'll see meaningful amounts of self-driving cars on the roads anytime soon.) The technology will have its place, but I think shared e-scooters and things like that are about a thousand times more exciting than self-driving cars, and their impact on cities will be far more profound. Thinking cars will just become smart and all our problems will be solved is...conservative thinking. As I point out in the article, our cars have become far more technologically advanced, yet it's only getting worse.

--Tan Tenovo

wishiwasmerckx said...

Thinking cars?

My car thinks that Trump is doing a horrible job as President.

Bikeboy said...

I remember a bit by Jay Leno, from WAY back before he had his own TeeVee show and all. He was describing the 50s-era Buick that his parents owned.

"It had pointy metal knobs on the dashboard, that stuck out at you like Bowie knives. If you crashed in it, they'd hose off the dashboard and sell it to somebody else."

Ah - those were the days. One of my early memories is riding in my mom's '53 Chevy, STANDING on the front seat in between Mom and Dad. (Who were paying attention to their driving.) The closest thing to a seat belt was Mom's arm flying out, to slow your trajectory toward the front. It wouldn't have been very effective above, oh, 3mph or so.

Your article is a dream! (That apparently some readers took VERY seriously.) But in a fair world, there would be some way to impose all or the risk upon the person who decides to take the risk of driving distracted or impaired or stupid. Driving behavior WOULD improve!

And there's more said...

Anonymous at 2:29pm,

Is your vision that every individual will have access to an autonomous car in the future (why not, right, because if you're not driving why do you need a license?) If so, doesn't that mean we now have to construct and maintain even more infrastructure for the car? Because if everyone (grandma who can't see; mom on her phone; Dad on his phone; little sister who needs to get to ballet but whose brother is at soccer across town)needs such an autonomous vehicle, then are we all not doomed to a world of ever increasing cars? What good is that?

dotcommie said...

One of my favorite cars was the 1500lbs Honda CRX I bought new in 1984. 1200cc's of 5-speed driving excitement.

It may not have been safe, but it was fun to drive, had sufficient leg room for my 6'2" body, and would get 50mpg or more.

Current car (2000 Toy-Auto) weighs in at 2050lbs. I have a thing for lightweight manual transmission cars. I've never owned an automatic car for myself.

pbateman does not brake for Ralph Nader and hopes ralph nader gets hit by a corvair said...

Snob - you da man.

everyone should be required to at least learn to drive on a slow, underpowered, manual tranmission auto for years. that part shouldn't even be in jest - i truly think that would make the woefully under-trained and under-tested drivers of america.... not be those things, if they had to drive a manual for the first year.

and it would have to be either a Volvo DL40 wagon or a Benz 240D.

learn to merge onto an atlanta expressway in a car that does 0-60 in 7 days...that will teach you how to control the thing and to PAY ATTENTION.


also:

F!%! Ralph Nader right in his fun-hating, communist anus with an impact bumper ..actually, make that two, both front and back bumpers. Right in the anus.

This is what a euro e28 M5 looks like: https://goo.gl/images/pBvNBP

This is what he did to it: https://goo.gl/images/rnE73h

He took my beautiful baby and mangled both its face and its bottom. I f'ing HATE Ralph Nader and I would NOT do his mother either.

Haywood Jablome said...

I commute to work by motorcycle at least 6 months a year, weather permitting. It's Michigan,so I have to use the automocar when it's snowing or too cold because I'm a pussy. That about covers the most dangerous form of transportation for me, I'm almost killed daily on it,but it gets 50+mpg.and the ladies love it. My 60year old neighbor lady thinks it's a beautiful bike,and I've been unsuccessfully trying to get her to go out with me for two years. (We're in the same age grouppo). Any suggestions?

Haywood Jablome said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Caroline said...

Love a blogger who can incorporate the word flensing into a post.

Big spike in centre of the steering wheel should do the trick.

Anonymous said...

And there’s more,
A future in which the elderly, addicts, the distracted have mobility with self driving cars is clearly preferable to the current situation where they drive impaired and distracted.

Trucking and taxi services should be first to adopt. There are very few us cities where a car free lifestyle is practical, especially if you want to own a house. On west coast, where Bay Area, Seattle Portland real estate is ridiculous, people commute long ways in terrible traffic, as soon as an Uber style subscription car service is priced competitively with leasing a Hyundai + insurance + parking, people would be all over it.

pbateman likes downtube shifters and manuals said...

hey, @anon 1:52pm

enthusiasts are not just waxing about manual transmissions and subtlety and skill etc...

those things, among many others, are actually required to operate a manual, especially as really high speeds through things like turns.

you need all four limbs to operate them,and sometimes you need one foot to operate two pedals at the same time (heel toe).

its like saying a drum set is old tech and anyone not using an 808 is a luddite.

you sir, are a flappy paddle pressing ninnyhammer with a predilection for buncombe and I think you and Ralph Nader would enjoy mutual use of an impact bumper.

JLRB said...

I agree - cars are too comfy.

But leave the poor whales alone.

Anonymous said...

Why does Mr. T drive a Tesla?

Because he pities the fuel.

wishiwasmerckx said...

Haywood, you might try wooing her by not double-posting.

I'm just sayin...

bad boy of the south said...

There's an article in business insider about truck deliveries and bikes.

wishiwasmerckx said...

PBateman, in the immortal words of the great Sir Mix-A-Lot,:

"'Cause the 808 kick drum makes the girlies get dumb
We're rollin Rainier and the jealous want to get some..."

Beck the biker said...

Your columns at Outside have really begun to showcase your skills at pitching common sense about roadway conventions. Right on the money as to what a car should be, and readily evoked Enzo's Fiat 500 in 'The Big Blue' as the model vehicle lacking many of those pesky safety features. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SGBE0QMXi1Y 'Mericans would adapt to no safety features like we did in the 1950s, though - driving too fast, drinking behing the wheel, rollovers, and damn the emissions.

Anonymous said...

looks like someone's channeling you

https://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2018/nov/01/australian-cycling-group-back-pedals-to-oppose-mandatory-helmets

Australia’s largest cycling lobby group has called for mandatory helmet laws to be scrapped, overturning its decades-long support for the policy.

Bicycle Network said in a position paper released on Thursday that Australia’s laws were “out of step” with the rest of the world and had failed to reduce bike fatalities, while cycling participation throughout the country has languished.

etc etc etc

includes ... Melbourne driver handed $1,000 fine for deliberately hitting cyclist – video

JLRB said...

Eliminating power steering would be the most effective way to focus driver attention

Megan said...

Yes! I've been saying this for years! It's only when people realize the risk actually inherent in driving that … just maybe... the rest of us will be safe? Fantastic article, Tan!

Matt said...

For a moment of NOT making fun of things, I can see a near future when people will be taking to the skies rather than the road. Human carrying drones (they already have some....people are working on them as we speak). No pilots license needed as you won't be flying it...you'll get in, enter your destination and the drone will talk to the master computer running things and pass it's/your info and get it's route assignment, take off, put you at some specific altitude (think aerial 3d car lanes), and take you to your destination and land. You plug it in to charge while you work (or not if you're just running errands, etc). At home it lands in your driveway on a pad that then slides back into your garage to charge. As batteries and motors get better efficiency it's just getting closer and closer. 2 seaters, 4 seaters, single seaters...if I could buy a drone RIGHT NOW for anywhere near the cost of a car and SKIP the roads and traffic, HELL YES I WOULD! It's coming...just sayin.

dop said...

My Mazda dealer tried to dissuade me from leasing a '3' with a manual transmission. He knew he'd have a hard time selling it when my lease was up. It's not a performance car, but still fun.

Bikes:
Good to see the Milwaukee. It's not getting a lot of love these days.

JLRB said...

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-10-30/the-bloody-consequences-of-the-electric-scooter-revolution

Scooter companies under fire

Haywood Jablome said...

Didn't work,yet..

Il Pirata est Mort said...

Thanks for the well crafted humor WCRM. Great read!

Just had to retire my Wrangler and for the first time in nearly 30 years have an auto-shifter. Dull. But saves my knees in N Jersey traffic.

Will be lovin' my sweaters said...

Matt at 9:36am,

If you're correct, then stick up on the wool clothes and good warm stuff - it's cold hanging from a drone!

Matt said...

Will be lovin' my sweaters said,

That would only be the "Economy" version. The midsize would have you sitting inside, but probably with no doors. Then there's the Full size with a "cabin" (which would add $20k to the price) tho still no windows. Then there'd be the Tesla Model S drone...full on decadence for a crazy price, but wicked awesome if you can afford it. And being as by the time we get all this, there will be flying bikes, and we will STILL be getting killed by the dang aerial cars! Just no win for a cyclist!

Anonymous said...

All-City Macho Man flat bar. HIGHLY recommend it to anyone who is considering an all around flat bar, great for commuting and especially for the trails. I forgot how much fun they can be. It's good to get off of the road bike once in a while. can't wait to ride home.

Diefree said...

The trend is catching on.

https://cyclingtips.com/2018/11/commentary-why-i-stopped-wearing-a-bike-helmet/

Matt said...

@ Diefree, thanks for giving us the link to that article...VERY interesting! (not that Snob hasn't been saying pretty much the same things for ages now, he just throws a lot humor and satire in the mix). A very well written straight-up no frills differing opinion from the mainstream 'view'.