Come Scoot With Me

This photo published today by chartno3 (click to view photo page) calls to mind a fateful comment from several months back left on a Mission Mission post about mopeds by one Tad Benton:

I used to ride a moped back in, oh, 2003. It was fun. Even picked up a DUI on it. They’re a huge pain the butt maintenance-wise, and yeah, not much better than a bike when it comes down to it. I was never much for joining clubs, either, and didn’t like pestering from the moped kids to do so. Now it’s just sort of rotting away in my backyard. Can’t bring myself to sell it, can’t be bothered to ride it. That said, having a girl on your back is delightful and people will smile.

Poetry, I say!

[photo via Jonathan Percy]

14 Responses to “Come Scoot With Me”

  1. burgin99 says:

    in all honesty mopeds are pretty gay and the whole subculture fad is likely to be remembered with winces

  2. Juan says:

    You can’t begin to imagine how much it would pain vintage Vespa owners to have their bikes compared to the mopeds that are currently de rigueur among the kids in the Mission.

  3. Mission Mistaken says:

    OK, so I may not be a fan of red light running bike fanatics, or tear up our precious city grass punks who abuse our parks.. or any kind of fanatic for that matter, but what’s with the moped hating? Go to Italy. Get a clue.

  4. What I would love to have answered for me is why anyone would purchase a moped instead of a motorcycle? Certainly it’s not the safety. A car is just as likely to hit you on one of these as a motorcycle and, I daresay, probably more likely since you haven’t the power to get out of the way as quickly. And the price? You can buy a perfectly decent motorcycle for $1500, sometimes less. So unless you’re really into, say, the Vespa as such, no sense at all dishing out the same money for so much less power.

    Now, if I were the swarthy type, and were cruising around the Italian Riviera, sure, seems like a pretty hip thing to do, but my god, the mission? The whole point is to get somewhere faster than a bike or walking. Why not buy something that might actually cut your time to another neighborhood. Thoughts, anyone?

    • TJ says:

      I think the reasoning is that it’s generally easier to handle a moped and some people actually happen to prefer the visual and riding style (how you situate your feet). I have no idea if the first part is true- I’ve only ever ridden dirt bikes and never a moped.

    • Juan says:

      Before this gets any farther, there are many significant differences between “mopeds” (the pedal-sporting, 50cc powered vehicles) and “motorscooters” (of which the Vespa and Lambretta are the two most notable examples). The larger scooters are just as big as many motorcycles but are preferred to motorcycles for all kinds of reasons (you don’t have to ride it like you’re humping a sheep, they’re very easy to ride — especially in a city, your pants don’t get greasy, etc.) Haven’t you people ever seen Quadrophenia? Sheesh.

  5. Mission Mistaken says:

    Oh, and for all you straight douche’s that think mopeds are ‘gay,’ you clearly haven’t seen Italian Catholic girls, in their naughty little school uniforms, ride (as in solo, driving the thing) their mopeds side saddle. Its a sight to behold, if you actually have ever had sex, which in my experience, guys who use the term ‘gay’ as a descriptive derogatory, haven’t.

  6. Rog says:

    I hate to be THAT guy, but vespas and lambrettas (pictured) are not mopeds, they’re scooters. Scooters are not mopeds and vice versa. Just to clarify!

  7. jekka says:

    They *are* adorable, but all vintage two-stroke engines should be banned. Emissions from one scooter can be equivalent to 50 cars, which is obvious to anyone who’s ever been stuck behind one.

  8. yestler says:

    Mopeds are the stupidest fucking thing ever, ingrained in my brain by some dipshit hipster on a Puch Magnum brapping around one night pulling up to me and randomly telling me he had the fastest moped in SF, getting up to a whopping 80mph.. then i told him my motorcycle is older, faster, more reliable and cheaper and told him to fuck off. Shits retarded, almost as bad as fixies

  9. aidan says:

    hey jekka, i believe they were banned. It’s my understanding that back in 1984 the EPA instituted new emission restrictions on 2-stroke engines in the US that effectively killed anything above 50cc.

    Any modern scooters you see are either 4-stroke or 50cc 2-stroke. Of course, there are some grey market larger 2-strokes like Stellas and late model Vespa PX200s that you see riding around, but their legality in california or the US is a bit questionable.

    More to note: scooters are considered motorcycles by CA DMV and require a MC endorsement to operate. Mopeds are registered differently and do not require a MC endorsement.

    Mopeds can legally be parked on the sidewalk and locked to bike racks. Scooters can not, and the penalty is a $100 ticket (at least that was the fine last time I got one)

    And I’m pretty sure mopeds only have to be registered once (not yearly like everything else) and I don’t think you need insurance. But I could be wrong on this one.

    I think mopeds are defined by the CA DMV as motorized vehicles with pedals, engines 50cc or smaller, that do not exceed 35 mph. so many of the hipster mopeds you see around violate at least one of these requirements.

  10. Floyd Law says:

    I don’t really care how people get around. Bike, scooter, moped, llama, whatever.

    But pods of those scooters driving up my street with souped-up mufflers drive me nuts. They literally have the same effect on me as hearing a mosquito in your ear.

    They make me want to run out and shove a banana up their tailpipe. However, I have a feeling the majority of the riders are lawyers, failed lawyers, or former members of the speech-and-debate team who’ve found a means to turn winey pansiness into an occupation. Not sure which would be the more annoying: the sound of their scooter or the sound of their voices.

  11. Yay! says:

    I ride a moped!
    It’s fun!
    You guys should try it sometime.