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Gear Prudence: Because walking and biking are too hard apparently, tourists take stupid Segways all over. There is nothing more annoying than Segway riders in bike lanes. They’re not bikes and they shouldn’t be there. Segways suck. —Massively Annoyed Local Loathes Careening, Obnoxious Platforms
Dear MALLCOP: That’s a lot of invective for something so silly, but GP accepts annoyance with tourists and their preferred method of personal mobility. How dare they come here and want to spend their time and money exploring one of the world’s most important cities! Don’t they know that some guy on a bike has to get to his boring office job? Assholes.
Not only is it perfectly legal for Segway riders to be in bike lanes, but that’s exactly where they should be. Segwayers have way more in common with bicyclists than other kinds of travelers. They’re wheel-assisted, but not encased in two tons of metal. They travel at a pace faster than walking, but slower than driving. You’d be just as mad if the tourists were on bicycles and slowing you down, but that they’re riding on such mockable means allows you to adopt a posture of snobbishness. Share the space and get over yourself. —GP
Gear Prudence: I have a beautiful, cobalt blue 1975 Schwinn Suburban bike. It has come time for me to give this magnificent beast up. But I want it to go to a good home, one that will restore it to its former glory. Other than surface rust where the scratches are, it’s actually in pretty good shape. I’d even give it away for free to someone who will take care of it. How should I go about this? —Goal: Individual, Verifiably Exceptional And Wanting. A Youth?
Dear GIVEAWAY: Step 1: Open a chocolate factory. Step 2 and beyond: You’ve seen the movie (golden tickets, four grandparents sleeping in the same bed, a series of OSHA and labor law violations, and the right kid eventually gets your bike), so GP shouldn’t need to go into greater detail. There might be some hiccups along the way, but it’ll be a delightful romp.
Or you could contact a bike co-op. Many have programs where kids are trained in bike maintenance and refurbishment. They would likely be able to assist you in finding the bike a new forever home and ensure that it is returned to good riding condition in the process. They’d likely expect the bike for free, but if it’s a 501(c)(3), you could potentially reap the tax benefits. If you want some cash in exchange for the bike, you could sell it the usual online ways, but then the onus would be on you to screen the potential buyers for their goodness of heart. At that point, you might as well have just opened the chocolate factory. —GP