According to Hollywood, I just might be. Slate has a great article entitled "Dude, Where's your car?: How not having a car became Hollywood shorthand for loser". This is an idea not lost on me. I often wonder what people think about the fact that I live in L.A. and there's only 1 freeway-drivable car in a 2-person household. I would argue that not having a car to get me to all my destinations, has increased my cool factor.
1. I'm not stuck in my car for 90-120 minutes a day commuting 5 days a week. Although this means I don't get to listen to endless amounts of bad radio, I do get to spend my commuting time listening to my iPod and This American Life podcasts.
2. By having only 1 car, we were forced to move to a transit-friendly neighborhood. In addition to being near transit I also live within two blocks of a local wine store, Trader Joe's, two yoga studios, half a dozen restaurants, two coffee shops and a bakery.
3. I'm able to shop at the weekly Thursday farmer's market, something I never got home in time to visit when I drove. I can also make almost any yoga class or dinner date within 30 minutes of me being off of work, even on a Friday! (Gasp! Has taking public transit turned me into one of those crazy hipsters who only shop locally? And if so, isn't that the definition of Hollywood cool these days?)
4. A weird side effect of not driving during the week is how little I drive on the weekends and nights. The bearded man and I tend to stay within the 10 mile radius area around our place, which just happens to include Downtown LA the newest cool spot to be in Lala land.
So I guess I will dust off those weird stares and uncomfortable pauses when I tell people I don't drive very regularly. I'll remind myself there are millions of New Yorkers who never even care to get their license and not worry about being called out like poor Cher.