Braak!
Lock up your hindbrain, it's Andy's Bucket-o-Memes
The Lazy Cyclist

Sloth and indolence. Two of my favorite words. And yet some people seem to think that I am keen, that I might be full of gumption or worse, that I might be someone who actively enjoys doing things the hard way. I'd better put them right.

I cycle because I'm lazy. There. Said it.

What? Oh, alright, I'll explain.

You look at a cyclist puffing up Park Street, and you think, "they're suffering, daft buggers." You might be right, too, but only if you think in the very, very short term. Thinking in the very, very short term is, if you ask me, half of what is wrong with people today.

Let's extend the timeline to the whole trip to work, using my daily ride as a model. Jeremy, who drives, walks for a couple of minutes to his car. He takes half an hour in the traffic, then another five parking, and a two-minute walk to the office. Miguel, who cycles, gets his bike from the hall, spends seventeen minutes riding around gridlocked Jeremy, and locks the bike up outside the office.

The difference in time spent is twenty-two minutes. Each way. That's two hours forty minutes a week. I don't know about you, but I have better things to do with that time. Like sleeping. Or having a leisurely breakfast. Lazy, me.

It gets better. Miguel has had two short sessions of cardio exercise. So he can skip the gym sessions that Jeremy attends two nights a week, freeing him to enjoy other lazy pursuits.

And it doesn't even stop there. Miguel has a fairly expensive bike, costing maybe 750. He spends about 50 a month on bits and servicing. Jeremy's car comes in at around 10,000, repayments of 200 a month and of course fuel at another 50 a month. Plus parking. Plus tax, insurance... you get the picture. Jeremy has to earn more to pay for that; he has to work harder. Miguel could afford to be lazy. Or he could spend some of that cash he has saved on nice things, holidays, presents for his wife or trips to visit his sister.

We could get environmental here too. All work done generates waste. Miguel, by working less, makes less waste. So being lazy is even the green way to go.

Genghis Khan very famously said, "If you have a difficult task, give it to a lazy man. He will find an easy way to do it." Laziness and efficiency go hand in hand. I'm a very lazy man; that's why I cycle. Because it's more efficient.

BackHomeMail andyg@ravenfamily.org