Moped menorah and more

Well, that’s technically a scooter, not a moped, but happy hanukkah anyway. If that and Hallmark’s electronic scooter Santa ornament aren’t proof that it was a big year for scooters, I don’t know what is. If you need scooter-related gift ideas for the holidays, Scooter Swag is the place to look. (For your-non-scootering friends, check out “Gifted” at the Coudal Partners Swap Meat.)

Pickitup pickitup pickitup pickitup…

I have this whole rant about how parents today think they’re so badass and hip and enlightened, when they’re really just forcing their embarassingly lame 20-year-old values on their poor kids just like every other parent before them (They Might Be Giants and IKEA are actually several notches down the hip scale from Shel Silverstein and avocado-colored appliances). But today I’ll spare you that lecture and pretend it’s cool that my Debbie-Harry-obsessed daughter watches a kids’ show that runs stuff like this.

That’s Parker Jacobs’ nifty animation for a nifty GoGo13 song that appeared on Yo Gabba Gabba, a show produced by one of the Aquabats that often features Mark Mothersbaugh and Biz Markie, neither of whom are nearly as hip as we’d like to think. But we love the show and the seeds for yet another wave (is this the seventh?) of ska are sown, and my little peanut will do anything a brother in an orange jumpsuit tells her to.

Patricia Piccinini’s “Nest”

Australian artist Patricia Piccinini has created a family of mutated fiberglass scooters for her 2006 “Nest” exhibition. 2SB pal Christine describes it best as “Surreal, oddly endearing, and sentimental like Bambi” and we can’t top that. If your taste for art extends beyond the scooter-related, see more at Patricia Piccinini’s site. Her first U.S. exhibition opens tomorrow at the Des Moines Art Center, with a later stop in Seattle. (Thanks, Chandler.)

Peg Perego Red?

The green Peg Perego Vespa GT seems to be everywhere these days, at wildy different prices, but The Conran Shop in the UK is the only place we’ve seen it offered in red. It appears to be the Peg Perego Vespa, anyway, minus the mirrors and the topbox, and with two small extra wheels.

Peg Perego Vespa: as overpriced as the original

We reported on the Peg Perego Vespa GT for kids a while ago, but Nitro has finally spotted it for sale at Hammacher Schlemmer. $329.95? Suck it Milena, I’ll be able to buy you a real one for $329.95 by the time you get your license.

Update: Vespaway reports Sears and Walmart are selling it for less than $250. Still not cheap, but somewhat more reasonable.

Child Riding Belts

I’ve ridden up and down the alley a couple times with Milena precariously set upon the floorboards of my Vespa, but I look forward to the day I can take her for a real ride. While toddlers riding as passengers on motorcycles is a way of life in many countries, it’s a bit frowned upon in the U.S. Now, thanks to the Child Riding Belt (Invented, obviously, in Canada, and clearly labeled as “not a safety device”) I’ll be able to tote her around as soon as I can find a helmet that fits. Or maybe not. Thanks for the link, Mad Man Maddox.

Virginia bans pocketbikes

While pocketbikes (the miniscooters and tiny motorcycles sold at auto parts stores and in gas station parking lots) are theoretically illegal on public roads anyway, the State–er, Commonwealth–of Virginia has banned their use on all public roads. Such bikes are almost universally ridden (helmetless, even) by children and teenagers and cheaply made with little provision for safety or reliability. Hopefully more states will follow their lead, or enforce existing laws. The ban will not affect street-legal, titled and plated motorscooters operated by licensed drivers. Google News usually lists a couple stories a day regarding deaths and serious injuries of children as young as eight, there’s no reason people, especially children, should be riding these deathtraps in traffic.