Derive by the mile

By Michele Bernstein

Potlatch #9-11 17-31 August 1954

In an article published in the August 19 issue of France-Observateur, Christian Hebert proposes a radical solution to the problem of parking in Paris: the prohibition of all private vehicles within the city limits and their replacement by a large fleet of moderately-priced taxis.

This proposal has our unqualified support. We all know how important taxis are for the recreational activity we call "derive," from which we expect to draw educationally conclusive results.

Only taxis allow true freedom of movement. By traveling varying distances in a set time, they contribute to automatic disorientation. Since taxis are interchangeable, no connection is established with the "traveler" and they can be left anywhere and taken at random. A trip with no destination, diverted arbitrarily en route, is only possible with a taxi's essentially random itinerary.

Aside from providing an egalitarian solution to a particularly irritating problem, the measures proposed by Mr. Hebert would have the invaluable advantage of allowing large sectors of the population to break free from the routes imposed by the Metrobus, and enjoy a hitherto rather expensive means of derive.



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