Whylie Whyse on Car Ownership

Vocabulary | Listenings


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Whylie Whyse looks at the question of why we are so addicted to private cars even though they are harming our planet and our health and why driving around in cars is a really stupid thing for an "intelligent" creature to do.

The Wise Whys of Whylie Whyse

Car Ownership

Hi, I’m Whylie Whyse and since I retired, I’ve become obsessed with asking myself, why?

Why did a small animal, weighing around 75 kgs, create a car weighing around 2000 kgs in order to move themselves an average distance of 11 kms?

Why, when an average 75 kg human can comfortably walk one km in 12 minutes, and could easily walk 11 km in just over two hours, do so many of us happily burn more than 1 litre of expensive, climate changing hydrocarbon from a finite, non-renewable source, to cover the same distance?

If we want to remain healthy and have a good quality of life, we human beings should weigh an average of 75 kg. So, why are so many people content to burn around 9000 kcal of energy to move their 2000 kg car and themselves a distance that they themselves could walk using less than 500 kcal?

Why can people not see that because they have come to rely on a 2000 kg machine to move them from A to B, and in doing so are not burning the 500 kcal they would otherwise burn, they are no longer at their healthy weight of 75 kg, but are now overweight or obese and at risk of diabetes, strokes, heart attacks, cancers, and more?

Why are 40% of the global population overweight or obese?

Why can’t people see that they are only going to become ever fatter the longer they rely on private cars as their primary means of transport?

Why am I at my ideal weight in my sixties? Why are my primary forms of transport my legs and a bicycle, and why don’t I own a car? Why don’t you visit the Britlish Library if you want to find out more?

Why should anyone drive a car which burns money and makes them fat when anyone can get to where they want to go on foot or by bicycle while, at the same time burning fat and saving money?

Why do I think our descendants are going to be less than impressed by our 150-year love affair with the internal combustion engine and our growing acceptance of obesity as a normal state for an increasing percentage of the world’s population?


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