Public Transportation: The Unexpected Benefit


*Image Credit: Honraeglor

It’s no secret that cars are ruining the environment. Carbon emissions, oil run off, even the lengths we go to for oil are all making a mess of the environment as we know it. Although we are encouraged to bike or use public transportation like buses and subways, we end up using cars anyways due to efficiency.

For me, without a car of my own I am forced to rely on buses, subways, and trains to get me everywhere. I don’t have to pay for gas or insurance, or the fees to fix a car, just transit tokens and tickets.

Despite the constant improvement to public transportation, the biggest drawback is still time. The amount of time waiting for the next bus or train. Even the time transferring between buses or just plain getting from point a to point b.

Living in the suburbs of Toronto getting to school or my internship will take approximately 2 hours one way. There and back being 4 hours a day. Going to work nearby is still 1 hour.

And while most people can read and write on the bus, I get motion sickness and it leads to an unproductive hour or two. But is it really so bad?

It’s the only two hours in the day I have to myself. I can listen to music and sit and do nothing. Completely unplugged from everything I find time to sort my thoughts, come up with ideas, and in a way, relax.

Sometimes when I don’t have to take public transportation for a while, I definitely miss my private time. I become more agitated then usual.

In a world where I’m constantly moving maybe 4 hours of rest and reflection isn’t such a bad idea?

-Heather

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Making the Playoffs Green


Photo Credit: Aklepsteen

The NHL Playoffs are finally here and I couldn’t be more excited! I’m prepared for two months of eyeing TV schedules, forcing myself to stay up late, cursing my bandwidth when attempting to stream games, and moaning over the lack of success of my hockey pool.

As wild as all that sounds, I know that I’ve got a responsibility to celebrate the most joyous time of the year in a safe and healthy way.

First of all, if I’m going to be drinking refreshments and eating snacks with most of the games I watch, I better make sure what I’m putting into my body is as harmless as a Toronto Maple Leafs powerplay (I say that with endearing bitterness of fan, of course). Popcorn can be a very healthy snack – if I lay off the salt and butter, of course – and so can carrot and celery sticks. I’m not going to name any names, but there are a few goaltenders who could probably benefit from eating carrots this off-season, if you know what I mean.

As for my beer consumption – I think that with every new playoff round, I’ll introduce myself to a new local beer; heck, for the Stanley Cup Finals I’ll try two. So for those bars showing hockey and carrying a variety of local beer… You shall have my patronage!

When it comes to travling to these jam-packed-with-fans bars, I’ll be forgoing the car ride and taking good ol’ public transportation. Not only is this reducing my own carbon emissions, this way I don’t have to worry about finding and paying for parking. And, if my team manages to win a game in overtime, say, I can safely indulge in that celebratory extra beer.

All in all, I have a feeling these playoffs are going to be a good time – health-, environmental-, and hockey-wise. If everyone does their part, maybe we can even manage to cancel out the riots from last year. In any case… Go Leafs go!

-Phil