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01/17/2009: "Training on Your Bicycle"
I'm posting this here because intermodal travel combining bicycles and trains is among the cleanest and most satisfying way to travel, taking you where you want to go with minimal degradation of the environment, and carrying your bicycle for you with an ease no other overland mode of travel--not car, not bus, not plane--can match. And of course the bicycle gives you nearly unlimited short- to middle-distance mobility wherever you may end up, and actually uses less energy than walking.

The Surface Transport Policy Partnership has announced a new coalition called OneRail, which is dedicated to improving both passenger and freight rail service in the United States. The US is far behind other industrialized countries in its use of rail, especially when compared to Germany, France, or Japan, and of course a consequence of this is America's status as the world's premier energy glutton. In their words:Friends of mine (and we ourselves) frequently integrate rail travel, whether local or long-distance, with our bike rides--and in fact it was quite a tradition in England years back, as this impossibly charming Cycle Tourists Club film from the mid-Fifties shows on YouTube: Cyclists Special.

Bringing that sort of thing back in a big way would do much to help put "civil" back into "civilization."

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