The recent kerfuffle over scooters in American cities like San Francisco — “We cannot overstate the public safety hazard that operating motorized scooters pose on City sidewalks,” the City Attorney declared in a hilarious overstatement — got us thinking about the tech innovation upon which these scooters owe their existence, i.e., the public safety hazard that is dockless bikes in Chinese cities. Of course, that “hazard” here, at least for me, is more in the form of inexperienced bikers who can’t cycle in a straight line and my own temper as I resist the constant temptation to hurl these bikes out of my parking spots…but I digress. Seeing pictures of knocked-down scooters in America got me thinking about the picture above, taken by my friend Leigh Bloomberg over the winter, which I share now.
Some days, dockless bikes get us where we need to go — usually 1.5 kilometers, no more, no less — with minimal damage to our joints and disposition. Other days, yeah, we’d gladly toss ’em off a dock into a frozen damn canal.
What kind of day are you having today?