Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Getting There: Walking

‘Getting There’ is a series of office tips about your commute into (and more importantly away from) the Plankton offices.

Walking to work is the slowest of all modes of travel and those who do it are well aware of this. Walking is for people who value the journey, not the destination. The walker has time to relax, reflect and evaluate their life goals. For this reason companies often provide free car parking, subsidised train tickets and onsite bicycle maintenance. Anything to discourage walking and ensure that people actually turn up, instead of wandering to the park to chill out, watch the ducks and wonder if there is more to life than this 8-5 desk job.

Given they are under such pressure to drive, walkers are considered to be quiet rebels who follow their own rules. Pedestrian crossings, for example, are shunned. When they must be used, all signals are ignored. One thing that unites all walkers is a belief in sticking it to the man (particularly the red flashing man).

People often say they live too far from work to walk but actually, this is impossible. After all, anywhere is within walking distance if you have the time and the right shoes. That extra time can be used to listen to long those long mellow tracks by bands like Pink Floyd or Sigur Ros; the kind of track which goes for half an hour before the song really starts. In fact anything shorter than ten minutes is just pop-rubbish for kids with no attention span.

Which brings us to the conclusion that people who walk to work are actually the most well adjusted individuals on the planet. If you ask someone "Why do you like to walk to work? " they will simply answer "Because I do, man ." This seemingly useless response actually says more about the walker than any Myers-Briggs self evaluation ever could. Walking is a not just a way of Getting There - it is, in fact, a way of life.