Monday, June 1, 2009

Fabulous or Freakish?

I have a problem. I want a scooter.

Not this kind of scooter:

This kind.

Yep. On my way to work today I was behind a woman tooling into town on her Vespa. No biker chick was she. No tattoos (from what I could see) or leather chaps. She was wearing ballet flats. And within seconds my 1999 minivan seemed a little bit…frumpy. Thoughts went through my mind. Could I pull off riding a Vespa? Is it good for the environment? Does it come in light aqua?

I toyed with the idea of a Vespa last year when gas prices were so high. It just seemed so sensible, so chic, so fun, but the problems with my scooter fantasy were numerous:

You cannot pick up children on a scooter.

Scooters severely limit curb-side shopping aka dumpster diving.

I travel with a bunch of crap at all times: stuff to return, coupons to ignore, a dog.

I buy in bulk.

I don’t like the ________ (Insert heat, sun, cold, rain, wind…)

I live in one of the most traffic-gnarled areas in the country, and I don’t mean “gnarly” in a mid-80’s good way.

Motorcycles scare me. Is this like a motorcycle?

A Vespa costs between $3,500-5,000.

Here’s a cheaper version, but it may be a bit like one of the kiddie ones I saw at ToysRUs.

On the plus side:

I work 1.5 miles from home and can get to work on neighborhood streets (before you tell me to walk or bike to work, I’d like to ask you to please focus! Let’s stay on topic here)

How cute is it?

Did I mention I’m turning 40 momentarily?

So, I’d love for you to weigh in. Should I pursue the Vespa or just leave it a dream? Could you see me lugging a gallon of milk and a bunch of Yoplait in my backpack on a Vespa, or does that make the cuteness quotient go WAY DOWN?

Truthfully, should I just hold out until I need one of these?


Vanessa said...

Go for it! Jerome had Vespa lust but bought a cheaper, less appealing Yamaha Zuma scooter several years ago. He rides it to work sometimes and around campus. The kids love it, too, and they'll be able to drive it before we turn around twice.

Lexilooo said...

I would love a vespa, they are so adorable!

Heidi said...

Oh, the Vespa! You should do it.

anymommy said...

Awesome ending! I'd say go for it, as long as you have an alternative for a rainy day.

Christy said...

I'd definitely get the Vespa. In a cute color. I see women riding them around Philly and our suburb all the time too...I've thought of getting one off and on my whole adult basically, if you get one, I'm going to visit Kate, and make her come introduce me to you so I can watch you ride it. AND/OR if you get this thing, you better take a video pronto!!!

Christen said...

That was the funniest ending ever!! I just laughed out loud and my husband called upstairs, "What?? What?" and then he came and laughed too. You could totally pull off driving a Vespa. Just use it for your "me time" rather than errands and stuff. Maybe it's not practical, but it could be a fun little splurge.

And definitely get it in turquoise!:)

Rebecca said...

I'm going to be a little bit of a downer but you asked for our opinion and I'd like to be honest.

I think a vespa may not be super user friendly for a mom but if you have the money for something that you may only use occasionally, then go for it!

Gretchen said...

I think it sounds really fun. AND our friend had one and he often picked his daughter up from school on it. Granted, she was only in 1st grade, but it's possible. I don't think you could pick up both of them.

And, yes, it would be a luxury item since you'd only be able to use it occasionally, but in a few years your kids could use it instead of a car or even when they get to college. Just an idea.

So, maybe, not pink. I LOVE THE PINK but I can't see your son agreeing to drive it or ride on it if it's pink.

Stimey said...

Buy the pink one and commute on it.

My husband commutes on a motorcycle and he loves it. It saves us a lot of money in train or gas expenses.

Plus, it's fun. I want to learn to ride too.

Vivienne @ the V Spot said...

Nope. I'm going to be a big downer. A Vespa is a motorcycle but not as fast or sturdy. Motorcycles aren't safe, ergo, Vespas aren't. Not 'cuz you'd be careless, but cars don't look for you. Unless you're getting one to drive around Rome, you're going to get creamed by drivers who don't know to watch for you.
But if you're going to Rome, but the pink one.

C. Groves said...

I say GO FOR IT! Not only is the Vespa cute and fun - but what a nice change it would be from driving the minivan. My own mom (a mother of 5) just got a Vespa last year and she LOVES IT! Sure, she doesn't always use it when heading out to pick up the twins from band practice, etc - but for running into town to grab just a few items at the grocery store, hit up the bank, or meet friends close by for lunch - she loves it!

L said...

My dream Vespa is green or orange. I've never seen a real one around here, but lots of knock-offs and scooters in general - despite the fact that the roads don't seem terribly safe for them. Can you rent one on your next vacation (to Rome?) to try it out? If you get one, you must get the matching helmet! said...

The do come in the lovely shade of aqua that you like and I bet you would look very sporty wearing a matching helmut as you scooted around town!

Debbie said...

I say go for it! You'd look adorable.

Vodka Mom said...

I want a Vespa scooter too! I've been talking about it for two years.
Damn, I wish Tightwad would get his job back.

Shawn said...

I really just love that name, Vespa.

I think that I need to name a child or a pet by that name....

Shawn said...

Oh, poop!

That was my twin sister---annoying!

This is me!!

Beth said...

This is from Beth's husband. I am SO feeling for you right now! I have been having a similar discussion with my wife Beth. Did I mention I'm 43? :) I used to ride motorcycles before I got married and "settled down". Are we starting to act "middle-age crazy"? Could be! I LOVE the Vespa, but be SURE you take a motorcycle safely course and be aware that you are not safe in these little things unless you are watching everything! Last, but not least, be sure you get buy-in from your loved ones. It's not worth making them worry the time. :)