Non-SOV Transit and Quinoa

If you have been to a Seattle Youth CAN event, you’ve definitely heard that non-SOV (single occupancy vehicle) transit rocks, but with this summer’s Transportation Challenge quickly approaching, it’s logical to wonder if alternate forms transit somewhat resemble quinoa- a “Super Food” that has probably never been described as “super.” So to convince you that biking, walking, carpooling and riding the bus bear little resemblance to disgustingly starchy complex grains, I’ve compiled some reasons why two “alternate” means of transportation, walking and carpooling, should really be your first choice.

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Let’s start with something you’ve been doing since you were nine months old- walking. Remember how your New Year’s resolution was to be healthy but then you just couldn’t find the time? We’ve all been there, but just because the year is half over doesn’t mean you have to give up. Walking is the ultimate form of multitasking, helping you reach your destination, sneak in some exercise and enjoy the nature you helped preserve by not emitting CO2 from your car (plus it lets you burn off some of the calories from that cupcake you ate for breakfast, but that can be our little secret). Not only is walking productive, it’s also free. Instead of having your money guzzled by your gas tank, you can save up for guacamole at Chipotle or scented candles or a mini horse- whatever you want!

Next up is carpooling. Remember that time you were pulling out of the school parking lot and your crush saw you shoulder-shimmying to One Direction? Me too. But never fear- carpooling is here! In my extensive experience, shoulder-shimmying with friends has proved to be 97.8% less embarrassing than doing it alone. Plus, there’s no better way to impress your crush than to prove you’re a compassionate individual who carpools to help prevent the exacerbated storms due to climate change that devastate coastal cities like Super Storm Sandy (bonus points if you can convince them to join your carpool too!). If you carpool on the freeway, you can even use the HOV lanes, letting you reach your destination faster. Say goodbye to the death-glare your first-period teacher gives you as you slip into your seat after the bell.

So let’s recap: keeping your New Year’s resolution, saving money, eliminating embarrassment and being on time are all things walking and carpooling help you do, and we haven’t even mentioned biking or public transportation yet! Personally, I’d take non-SOV transit over quinoa any day.

-Clare G.

Seattle Youth CAN YLC Member