Monday, December 18, 2006

Personal Changes

There was an article in yesterday's Seattle Times Pacific Northwest Magazine about the family that is trying to be carless in Seattle. I'm impressed: that's tough here. It shows a commitment to real change.

At the core, this is a design issue. In the last few years, I have been in three cities where cars are pretty much more trouble than they are worth: London, New York, and Paris. They are denser than Seattle. They have much better public transportation systems than we do. More and more cities are starting to design for multi-modal and more public/shared transportation. We should consider accelerating those efforts.

I promised I'd report back on two of our family efforts: dry cleaning and windows. The new eco-friendly dry cleaner in turning out to be cheaper and the clothes softer. I don't feel like I'm wearing poison. They're slower, so I had to go get a few more pairs of work pants or cancel out my good by making more frequent trips, but I'm glad we did it. Easy.

I don't know how to tell if the windows really do a better job yet. The house was really cold without power and since we have no window coverings up yet, my guess is that it was not particularly a good thing to have brand-new windows (we would have closed the drapes on the other ones). But they are beautiful and once we get them covered, I think they'll be a lot better.

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