It’s only been a week and already the local initiative to provide a fleet of free, easily accessible electric scooters to the public has me feeling like my car is an unnecessary extravagance. Why do I need all of that machinery to get to my buddy’s place up the street, or to run over random bystanders, when I can just use a lean and mean public scooter?
It’s an evolution of modern convenience tailor-made for a time when climate change is destroying the world and a majority of hit-and-runs go unsolved. When we all first heard about the iPod we thought, who needs this? Who needs thousands of songs in our pockets to be accessed whenever we wanted? Soon, we couldn’t remember what life was like without them. That’s how I feel every time I jerk the handles of my free electric public scooter onto the sidewalk when I’m struck by the sudden urge to hit a jogger. I may never commit vehicular homicide with a 4-door mid-sized sedan ever again.
I used to worry about witnesses writing down my license plate number as I fled the scene. That concern was immediately wiped from my mind after a few minutes of cruising around town in my scooter looking for prey. You can’t tell one lime green electric scooter from another. As long as I wear a ski mask over my face and cover any identifiable tattoos and scars I collected in prison, I can run people over in broad daylight with relative anonymity. The fact that it’s completely free of charge – just grab a scooter from recharge station and go – means there are no messy receipts that can be traced back to me.
I don’t want to paint too a rosy a picture. It’s an imperfect system with plenty of room for improvement. The front tires are too underinflated to really knock out a pedestrian in one shot. The solar-powered electric engine is fine for cruising around town but not powerful enough to crack a femur in one pass. I found myself backing up and running over a pair of legs two, three times just to hear that satisfying snap. The seat cushion chafed a little. But convenience and ease of access overshadow all of these minor complaints.
My favorite part of the whole thing is how recharge stations double as the perfect place to dump a vehicle. I can’t afford to torch my 2002 Honda Civic and push it into a ravine every time I send some oblivious guy sailing in the air. I just grab a scooter, hit-and-run, then put it back where I found it. Easy peasy. I’d love it if the recharge stations offered wet wipes to clean away the odds and ends you collect cruising around town, like bug splatter or fingerprints.
I look forward to expanding my hunting grounds when the free electric scooter program spreads into the rest of the city. I’d tell you to look out for me but thanks to the whisper-quiet electric motor you won’t even know I’m about to run you over.