a change in time

musings on behavioural change – the small stuff and the big stuff.

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My driving addiction

I know I have an addiction to driving because I looked up the definition of ‘addicted’ and this is what it said: compulsively or physiologically dependent on something habit-forming. Because of this addiction, you cannot trust me to write anything that is unbiased or rationally argued, but I will have a go anyway.

My first ‘set of wheels’ was a Suzuki GT250. It had a shiny silver tank with a black stripe.


You can tell this photo is from the seventies because it’s a black and white print that I developed myself.

For those of you who rode motorcycles in your teens and twenties you may remember that sense of feeling immune to accidents and injury. I rode motorcycles exclusively for three years before the trip across the Westgate from my flat in Toorak to Altona North High School became less like fun and besides, I could afford to buy a car. While I continued to purchase and ride motorcycles, my preference for driving grew as the years passed.

During the first unit of the Graduate Certificate in Sustainability, our lecturer asserted that ‘for every flashlight you have on someone, there is one on you’. I secretly knew that this flashlight was aimed at my driving addiction. Anthony told us about Frank Fisher’s acronym for ‘people like me’ – DODOs: driver only, driver owned.

Sometimes I wish I never took it up. It’s much easier to resist something if you’ve never tried it. I’d like to think that the fact that neither of my brothers have cars and our youngest son has so far avoided the habit, that I am let off the hook. A kind of family carbon offset.

Would you like to see a photo of my current object of desire? Of course you do!


My mother calls my Subaru ostentatious, I call her ‘subi’. (Original!)

Did you see that article in The Age in which they referred to ‘the middle ground between vego and paleo’? Of course someone has come up with a name for that middle ground – reducetarian. The description appeals to me because, even though I am nowhere near going cold turkey on driving, before I jump in the car, I now ask myself if I really need to, and I avoid ‘driver only’ travelling as much as possible.

Why bother? Because the small changes we make everyday contribute towards creating a more sustainable way of living.

After all, the ‘motto’ is Reduce, Reuse, Recycle for a reason. Wish me luck!