Minimalist Transportation

Even though it might seem that way, I don’t ride a motorcycle purely because of how much I enjoy it, or because it helps me to focus. I also enjoy the minimalist experience that a motorcycle provides.

Note: Not all motorcycles are like mine. Some come with all kinds of accessories, such as automatic transmissions, radios, GPS, heaters, and even sheepskin seats!

My motorcycle is pretty simple. It has everything it needs to get me from point A to point B, and little more.

Ms. Peep’s accessories:

  1. windshield – It came with the bike.
  2. saddle bags – These aren’t actually installed yet, but when they are they’ll contain such frivolous things as rain gear and a water bottle. Plus, shopping runs will be so much easier!

Things Ms. Peeps doesn’t have:

I think this is a much more interesting list.

  1. automatic transmission – Just like a manual car, I have to shift up and down through the gears
  2. reverse – Speaking of gears, if I can’t coast or push myself backwards, then I don’t go that way. And small though Ms. Peeps may be, she’s still kinda hefty.
  3. automatic blinkers – That’s right. After I make a turn, I have to remember to turn off my blinker.
  4. complicated systems – I can easily figure out how Ms. Peeps works. One can trace from the control to the brake, from the shift pedal to the transmission, or any of the switches to the lights they operate. Have you tried to do that in a car?
  5. a lot of information on the dash board – I have 6 indicators in front of me: speedometer, odometer, neutral indicator light, high beam indicator, blinker indicator, and engine problem indicator. And, really, I don’t need all of these.
  6. a cup holder – Though it would come in handy sometimes, I haven’t figured out how to drink something while my helmet’s on anyway.
  7. cruise control – I do have a throttle lock, but it’s entirely not the same thing. Now you know part of why I dislike interstates so much (you know, besides the fact that they’re boring.)
  8. radio – At least I don’t miss it. Of course, I could borrow my wife’s mp3 player if I was dying for some tunes on the road.
  9. heat/air conditioning – Air temperature is my temperature. That’s why I practice winterization.
  10. clock – If I forget my watch, I’m time-less on the road. This helps me to relax and enjoy the ride, while also helping me be better about leaving a time cushion for any commuting I need to do.
  11. storage space – If it doesn’t fit in my backpack, or in the to-be-installed saddle bags, it doesn’t go with me. Though this can be a challenge, I love that I don’t have to worry about cluttering up my vehicle.

There are plenty of other things that Ms. Peeps doesn’t have (like a roof, doors, or windows). All of these are things that people think they need in order to commute. By giving up on these things, I’m able to enjoy my trip more, while also using less resources. Fewer materials were required to build Ms. Peeps, less fuel is needed for my travels, and she even takes up less parking space.

I know it’s not for everyone, but my minimalist transportation is certainly a highlight in my life!

4 thoughts on “Minimalist Transportation

  1. Rebecca Burgener says:

    Ms. Peeps simplicity makes it easier for you to be the mechanic. The lack of doors, roof, floorboard, etc means you never have to clean out the garbage that accrues in a car or family van.

    I’m a bit intimidated by motorcycles, but before having a family, I wanted a moped for the simplicity, gas mileage, etc. It wouldn’t be practical now.

    • Matthew says:

      Ms. Peeps’ simplicity is nice. It’s amazing to work on a vehicle where everything can be reached from about two different locations!

      When my wife and I find ourselves pregnant, I’m going to start looking into side cars. We’ll see how well that works. 😀

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