I recently purchased a super-sweet Xootr MG Scooter to use as my primary mode of transportation to work. And I love it. It is a “kick” or “push” scooter, not one of those sissy motorized ones. This is all man-power, baby. Although the Xootr was a bit expensive, it is easily one of the most worthwhile purchases I’ve made in recent years. Here are 10 reasons why:
1) It gets me to work twice as fast as walking.
The most direct route from my apartment to my work is about 1.7 miles, but that includes many of San Francisco’s (in)famous hills. The more manageable, level route I usually take is 2.5 miles (5 miles round trip). Walking, this takes me 40-45 minutes each way. Xootr scootering, it takes me about 20 minutes. Over the course of a week, that’s an extra 3+ hours added to my life for cold chillin’ maxin’ and relaxin’.
2) It’s a nice workout.
When I first started my job, I was hoping that walking 5 miles a day to and from work would help me battle my ever-expanding waistline. It didn’t happen. I saw zero change in weight or waist after 4 months. I think it’s because the walking just wasn’t enough of a cardiovascular workout for me. This made me less interested in devoting 80-90 minutes of my day to commuting, since I wasn’t seeing any obvious health benefits. With Xootr scootering, I not only get to work twice as fast, it also leaves my legs feeling like they got a great workout and typically leaves me pretty out of breath and sweaty (I take it a little easier on the way to work so as not to alarm my co-workers with my pit stains the size of Africa). The actual motion of scootering feels a bit like doing a lot of little lunges, combined with periodically balancing your full body weight on one leg, and after 2.5 miles my quads are burnin’ pretty good. I’ve only been doing it for two weeks now, but already I feel my washboard abs contacting their publicist, assembling the groupies, and preparing to go on their reunion tour. I’ll report my results after a few more weeks of Xootr scootering. Because I know you care.
3) It’s fun.
Seriously. Who wouldn’t want to ride a scooter to work? I zip down those sidewalks with the glee of a 12-year-old.
4) It doesn’t require me finding a place to lock my bike and worrying about it being stolen.
I thought about riding my bike to work instead, but it’s such a short distance it didn’t really seem worth the hassle of locking and storing and worrying about my bike. WIth the Xootr, I just fold it up, throw it over my shoulder (you can purchase a custom shoulder strap for it), and carry it into my office or apartment. Brilliant.
5) It doesn’t require me to change my footwear.
I also thought about rollerblading to work, but then I would have to bring my shoes with me and change into them when I got to work (or wear my rollerblades all day and risk becoming the Tootie of my workplace). Meh.
6) It doesn’t require me to bring a change of clothes.
I also thought about jogging or running to and/or from work, but that would require some sort of complicated clothing arrangement (such as wearing running clothes and bringing work clothes with me in my backpack or leaving a week’s worth of work clothes at work and taking them home for laundering on the weekend or buying an entirely new outfit every day when I arrived at work) and make me super gross and sweaty upon arrival at work (instead of only mildly gross and sweaty). Meh.
7) It doesn’t require me riding on an overcrowded bus (and is cheaper in the long run).
With a monthly bus pass running about $40 and my Xootr running about $220, this bad boy pays for itself in under 6 months (well, compared to bus riding, anyway…it’s obviously more expensive than walking unless you factor in the increased amount of time it takes to walk, which I will, and my time is way valuable, so then the Xootr pays for itself in like a fortnight).
8) It’s green, baby. Green.
Environmentally green, that is (the actual color is silver and black, as you can see…although the deck also comes in red and blue). The only energy I waste riding this mean machine is my own.
9) It’s the scooter Batman would own…
…y’know, if he were an impoverished college administrator like me instead of a billionare playboy.
10) It makes me stand out a bit, even in a city full of weirdos.
When my wife told her father that we were moving to San Francisco, he commented that “there are a lot of weirdos there.” He was right, of course, and that’s one of the reasons why we love it here! But as I scooter along on my way to work every day, virtually everyone who sees me takes time to check out my sweet ride and look a bit puzzled, bemused, or intrigued. The cheese stands alone. Or something.