Monday, April 30, 2007
When I saw the comic strip Shoe on Saturday (go to the April 28, 2007 strip) it brought back memories. When I was in high school I saved up my money and bought myself a Honda Spree scooter just like the one in the picture. It was my main mode of transportation to school and work for my junior and senior years of high school and even during my first job after college. And it worked great - except in rain or snow. Plus it really only held one person. Not nearly as cool as a car, but certainly better than a bike. And it got great mileage!!
The memory that the comic strip brought back was of a time when my parents had gone out of town, leaving me in charge of three of my younger siblings. I can't remember how long they were gone, but it was long enough for us to run out of milk. No big deal. My scooter had a white wire basket on the front - big enough for 1 gallon of milk. So off to the store I went keeping to smaller residential streets since the maximum speed the scooter could go was about 27 miles an hour, maybe 29 going downhill with the wind at your back.
Now, you have to know that I was pretty proficient at controlling the throttle on that machine. I could sit at a stop sign and keep my feet up, while waiting for traffic to go all by opening and closing the throttle back and forth, letting the shifting keep me upright. And I did that all the time. On my return trip from the grocery store this proved to be problematic. You see, a police car was following me. And when I stopped at a stop sign without putting my feet down the officer pulled me over.
I kinda wondered what the problem was. Well, he cited me for failing to stop and for - get this: speeding! I immediately burst into tears, sensitive teen that I was and began pouring out my tale of woe. "I'm just out getting milk for my sisters and brother 'cuz I'm in charge while Mom and Dad are gone" (if it weren't for the milk jug right there he'd probably have thought it was a bunch of BS). And I explained the whole throttle deal. He made me demonstrate that I could stop without my feet down (harder to do from a dead stop, let me tell you) and finally let me off with a warning.
So, when I'm old I'm gonna have me another scooter. Then let them stop me for going 7 mph in a 5 mph zone! Just call me a scooter rebel.