Advocacy Report: Electric Cars and Standing Desks

A while ago (32 weeks ago, apparently) I bought an electric car, a Nissan Leaf. Here’s everything you want to know about that:

It’s all electric. That means no gas, which means if I run out of juice I’m basically screwed, which hasn’t happened yet. I get about 60 miles of range, but that’s because I only charge it to 80% to preserve the battery. At 100% I get about 80 miles, but that depends on how much of that is on the highway vs. how much is city driving. It’s the opposite of what you think: highway driving uses up tons of power. Yes, that’s weird. I plug it into a normal outlet in my garage. If I got a dryer outlet installed I could charge it four times faster. It takes 24 hours to fully charge it using a normal house outlet. Yes, that’s a long time. I spend about 20 dollars more per month on electricity where I was spending about 100 dollars per month on gas. No, I can’t go on a road trip with it. And I can’t explain why you can’t just put a magnet in the wheel and drive forever, but I think it has to do with friction.

I’ve actually had to field more than one question about that last bit. I’m sure if it were possible to make a perpetual motion car then all the people who know way more about electricity than me would have figured it out by now.

There’s other fun stuff I could tell you about, like how there’s an interface that gives you positive feedback for driving efficiently:


The more efficiently you drive (controlled acceleration and braking), the more trees you make. It’s super fun. And after 32 weeks of driving it, I don’t think there’s been any major inconveniences. Granted, I have a wife with an ICE (that’s electric car lingo for Internal Combustion Engine) which makes things like trips to Ohio possible, but still.

I had been considering an electric car for a while. As an architect, I get clients all the time who are gung-ho about going green until they get the bill. I want to start following through on some the things I’m always hearing about so that I can lead by example. And if you’re curious about what put me over the top: no oil changes. Sounds weird, but I had only been really considering savings on fuel as a means of offsetting the cost of a new car. But there’s very little maintenance to do on my car and that was the last bit of info I needed to pull the trigger.

So I’ve been a de facto advocate for electric cars for half a year now, and I’m about to be a de facto advocate for standing desks as well:


As you may know, we recently moved our offices and one of the requests I made was to have an option for a standing desk. Somewhat surprisingly my bosses have decided to accommodate me. I’ve only had it for two days so I haven’t been cured of polio yet, but I’m optimistic. I’ll be sure to let you know what superpowers I get as they develop. In the meantime you should get a standing desk, too, because apparently if everyone on the internet had one there wouldn’t be angry trolls anymore:


And I’ll also try not to kill this guy’s other parent because apparently a standing desk user already got to one of them. Being smug about not being smug is …

… hang on, I’m feeling an irony embolism coming on. I need to stand up.

I’m also considering biking to work and getting solar panels on my house. This blog is about to get a whole lot holier-than-thou.



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