According to my fabricated calculations, the scooter uptick in the last 12 months has increased approximately 9-fold. Each day, more and more students are purchasing scooters to hasten their trips to and from their dorms and classes.
After a semester in Professor Cohen’s “Global Change and Infectious Disease” class (a fan favorite among the hypochondriacs of Wes who are completing the level one NSM requirements) I think I know an epidemic when I see one.
I asked an avid scooter user, Jaclyn Lore-Edwards ’21, about her scooting experiences at Wesleyan. “I bought a scooter because this year I’m living on Washington Street which is pretty far from most things on campus. With the mix of living farther from central campus and my inability to be punctual, I bought a scooter so I could get places fast.”
While the year began last year with more manual scooters, the fall of 2018 has taken on the next level of scooting: electric scooters. I have come to terms with this technological development, as it is only natural that a hilly campus such as this would not be host to the simple razor scooters of my peasant childhood. At least thrice a day, I am privy to noises equal to those of a lawnmower blasting into outer space as my classmates vroom down Foss Hill and towards their destinies.
“I love scooting around campus, especially when I’m scooting downhill. It’s so nice after a stressful class to scoot downhill on my way back home with the wind whipping in my hair.”
Clearly, there is an existential pleasure in the act of scooting that makes the experience addictive, possibly even contagious. Watching people scoot is so appealing, in fact, it almost makes you want to get off your tail and scoot around yourself and access that last bit of happiness you’ve been waiting for.
“It’s definitely fun to see other people scooting around,” says Jaclyn, apparently my one and only scooter source. “Whenever I pass someone else on a scooter we usually give a nod that’s like ‘what’s up.’”
Overall, electric scooters and their overzealous riders provide a great deal of amusement and excitement for me. While I have heard a few complaints from pedestrians about fear of scooter collisions and illegally (if not annoyingly) parked scooters, I refuse to allow the majestic nature of the scooter be trampled on by the mere mortals who simply walk to class. And just like any other object of interest, sometimes scooters walk off, much to the dismay of their loving parents.
As I do not own a scooter, I must include myself in mortal category. Admittedly, I began this article feeling somewhat disdainful towards scooter owners, but through this emotional roller coaster I finally feel as though I have come around, especially after my intensive fieldwork and exclusive interview with top scooter user Jaclyn Lore-Edwards ’21.
I would like to give a shout out to those owners of electric and manual scooters alike, for you alone have revived my childlike joy of watching fast moving machines serve a moral purpose.