Updates from May, 2008 Toggle Comment Threads | Keyboard Shortcuts

  • concreteguy 5:30 pm on May 30, 2008 Permalink | Reply

    Bike mileage for May 

    I will be finishing the month of May with 157 commuting miles on the bike. And that is only 9 bike commutes in the entire work month.

    I almost 2 weeks I’ve only used a half a tank of gas. So at this rate of bike commuting, I’m saving myself about a tank of gas per month — nearly $50. And I can do even better.


  • concreteguy 4:12 pm on May 26, 2008 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: gas milage, geo metro, suburban sprawl   

    Saving gasoline? 

    Yesterday I saw a story on Yahoo! — I think it was actually content from CNN/Mondy — about how to use less gasoline.

    Weirdly, or perhaps not so weirdly, there was no mention made of simply driving less.

    Heres a story about people looking for old Geo Metros, which are (or maybe were) cheap, and got 40mpg. I feel bad for the woman in the story, who feels smart for buying a Geo for here 100 mile per day commute. The real problem, of course, is the 100 miles. 

    I used to have a daily commute of about 40 miles each way. It sucked. We changed our living arrangements to a short commute situation because we were sick of wasting so much of our lives in the car. Now it seems with the collapse of the petro-culture at our throats, it will help financially too.

    I can’t fault someone for trying to find a fuel efficient car — but it’s grasping at straws. We — our civilization — must change. Conserve, reuse, recycle.  The cheap-energy suburban sprawl culture is on its last legs. We’re going to need to live in the communities where we work, grow more food locally, and invest in public transportation, before its too late.

  • concreteguy 2:43 pm on May 22, 2008 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , composting,   

    Composting and bike commuting 

    Yesterday the composter we ordered arrived, and we put our first load of vegetable matter into it. This little composter can be tumbled to mix things up, and the liquid junk that is produced (nutrient rich “compost tea”) goes into the base, where it can be gathered and used to add good stuff to your garden.

    Of course, we’re doing this the yuppie way, I guess, by purchasing a slightly expensive little composter. I mean, looking at what we got, it is severely over-priced. But after a few harvests of compost it will have paid for itself and nurtured our garden too.

    I guess the next projects will be 1 or 2 more square foot gardens and maybe 2 more rain barrels. I may look into making my own rain barrel out of some kind of old barrel or something.

    On the topic of bike commuting: Today is the 3rd time this week I’ve ridden to work. I’ve really come to enjoy it, even in the increasing heat of the Texas summer. It isn’t bad in the morning, and in the afternoon I just lather up with sun screen, fill my water bottle, and totally enjoy the ride home. Each bike commute day gets me 1:20 of exercise, and saves me gas. Which is great, because I filled up one of our little Mazda Protege5 cars last night — a fairly efficient car at 26mph city — and the fillup cost $47. Holy shit!!

    I just realized I haven’t written anything about punk rock on this blog, maybe ever, and it’s supposed to also be about punk. So here’s some music. But really, I don’t think there’s much thats more punk than growing your own food, collecting rainwater, and riding a bike rather than driving a car. DIY baybee.

  • concreteguy 7:37 pm on May 21, 2008 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: conservation, green living, rain water harvesting,   

    Rainwater harvesting 

    We’ve been collecting AC condensation in a rain barrel. In 2 weeks we’ve gotten 20 gallons already. Did you know that 1 inch of rain on 1000 square feet of roof produces 550 – 600 gallons of water runoff? Time to collect more of that, which would just run off into the street, and use it to water the yard and garden.

    the good ol\' rain barrel

    • CycleJerk 2:19 pm on May 22, 2008 Permalink | Reply

      Hellllllllll Yes! I have a high efficiency furnace which produces water all year round. I admit it is more of a pain in the winter to figure out what to do with the water. It’s not like the frozen plants need it, but I do collect and use it the rest of the year. Why make your local water treatment plant waste energy and harsh chemicals to treat your purified water? Don’t let it go to waste!

    • Stefan 8:35 pm on February 27, 2010 Permalink | Reply

      … “Did you know that 1 inch of rain on 1000 square feet of roof produces 550 – 600 gallons of water runoff” … it is this awareness of the relative simplicity of collecting / harvesting rainwater that needs to be increased in industrialized countries. I believe that raising awareness on a “local” level on the topic of rainwater harvesting is what is needed more in the USA and other “industrialized” countries. I am trying to summarize useful information and helpful products / links on the topic of rainwater harvesting on my webpage,
      http://www.watercollect.com During my research on this topic, I found that the relevant equipment is often relatively easy to install and also affordable – products are available to support rainwater harvesting in families / households or even larger communities. Low cost water tanks, rain barrel diverters, portable water storage tanks, rain water barrels, and rainwater cisterns are only some of them. A small local step can have a major global impact…

  • concreteguy 2:53 pm on May 20, 2008 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , ,   

    Bikes for the Rest of Us 

    One of my favorite blogs is Bikes for the Rest of Us. The site offers news and pics of bikes that are suitable for commuting and/or leisure riding. They typically look at bikes that are less than $1000 — some much less — that still provide a great urban commuting solution. As rising gas prices continue to break this country’s balls, I think these kinds of bikes are going to become more popular and more available. Now granted, they haven’t mentioned the Electra Townie yet, but it’s still a great site.

    • freewheel 4:34 pm on May 20, 2008 Permalink | Reply

      Thanks for the plug. We did cover the Amsterdam. I’ll add Townie to the list.

    • freewheel 1:18 am on May 21, 2008 Permalink | Reply

      Thanks for plugging Bikes For The Rest Of Us! The Amsterdam was one of the first bikes I put one there. I’ll add Townie to the list.

  • concreteguy 5:29 pm on May 9, 2008 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: commuter bike,   

    Commuter bike 

    The Townie 21, set up for commuting. Cannondale panniers, bell, headlight, a couple of flashing tail lights, and a computer. Just need fenders now. Yes, I park it in my office.

    bike 002

    • TJ 3:24 am on May 23, 2008 Permalink | Reply

      Hi. I just bought a Townie also, and I like your panniers. Have you hauled groceries in them yet?

      I also like the black. My options were blue and orange, and since I chose orange I can’t find any accessories that don’t look out of place on it.

    • bibliosk8 12:46 pm on May 23, 2008 Permalink | Reply

      Yes, they will hold quite a lot of groceries. We have the same panniers on my wife’s townie, so we’re ready for grocery shopping. Those cannondale panniers, like everything else in cycling, are expensive — about $70 each. I’m sure there are less expensive options.

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