Posted by: nickgerlich | July 1, 2008

Segway Segue

(This is one of those rare instances in which I can have some fun with homonyms in the title.)

They say that perception is everything. If you perceive it, then it must be real. At least real in your head.

Funny thing is, perceptions can suddenly make an about-face, and what was once the epitome of geek can become sleek and chic.

SegwayAnd what better opportunity, I say, than to segue into the Segway…the nerdiest of all human transport devices that is now all the gas-saving rage. Once the domain of urban cops, mall and airport security, and people with pocket protectors, the Segway is seen as hip and cool. Especially as its users go zipping right by the gas station on their way to work.

My, what a difference a year makes.

And isn’t it also bizarre that folks would be willing to spend $5000 or more on a device that is only suited for very short distances? Um…distances that could be walked?

Sure, we all might save some gas money for those short trips. But unless your city’s sidewalks are ADA-compliant with ramps at every corner, you will be forced out into the street with cars, trucks, and me on my bike. And even if you have compliant sidewalks, I bet the pedestrians you buzz along the way won’t be too happy with you. After all, you would effectively be a vehicle operator on the sidewalk. Not a good match.

As much as I love techno-gadgets, I cannot help but loathe the Segway. It is the ultimate statement of laziness. Heck, you would get more exercise driving to work and then walking from the parking lot to your building.

At a time when anyone with a product that offers a nickel’s worth of gas savings is suddenly a new messiah, my perception of the Segway is still lukewarm at best. What next? A personal levitation machine so I don’t have to make that l-o-o-ng trek from the bedroom to the bathroom each morning?

“Hey honey, you forgot to recharge this thing!”

Segway? No way.

Dr “Save Your Money” Gerlich

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