Here’s a video recap of “The Vespa Experiment,” a Pacific-coast tour by three musicians on Vespa scooters. One of the musicans, Amber Rubarth sums it up:
I feel like this whole tour was all about getting to the core of life and purity and innocence. And, just getting back to the musical part and not in the business of it.
Sure, apart from the fact that it was PiaggioUSA marketing scheme, business didn’t enter into it at all, ha. The music’s not my thing (noodly earnest mellow acoustic pop) but they seem like nice kids. As far as PiaggioUSA marketing schemes go, it seemed pretty successful, and if nothing else, three musicians had a good time and a once-in-a-lifetime experience, so Vespa FTW!
Everyone’s been talking about Genuine’s retro-styled touring scooter for months, but Genuine (amazingly) has kept images and details under wraps. So I was surprised as hell when, after an already-surprising Blur 220 ride, Genuine president Philip McCaleb and designer Eric Carl offered me a peek at a series of computer renderings last Monday.
Photographer Scott Branch is riding from Miami to LA on a Kymco People 50. He expects to take 30 days and spend $65 in gas. It does not appear Scott took the weight and aerodynamics of his giant backpack into account when calculating his speed or fuel consumption, but good luck to him! You can follow Scott’s journey on his blog.
RandMcNally has been spamming all over the scooter community, but they’ve got an interesting idea and a great offer: They’re giving away a Genuine 50cc Buddy to promote their new FabMaps, maps printed on fabric that can just be wadded up and jammed in a bag, or used to clean your helmet visor or sunglasses, or to hold a hot sparkplug, or whatever else scooterists do with rags (badump bump!) Even better, the FabMaps are on sale for $2 with free shipping, I just ordered a few, the drawback seems to be that they’re limited to the trendy/touristy neighborhoods of trendier cities (Chicago, for instance featured Lakeview and the Magnificent Mile) but still, $2 is a good deal and if they’re not good maps, they’re hopefully good shop towels, or vice versa. Full review when we get ’em.
Honda is promising to unveil a mind-blowing Silverwing replacement at EICMA that will knock the socks off potential T-Max buyers. Scooter Station thinks it’s based on this concept from a couple years back. I can guarantee it won’t be that crazy-looking, but they’ve piqued my interest. Also: aren’t high-powered touring scooters supposed to have comfy seats and passenger/storage space? I can see a market for big-displacement sports scooters, but it’s not replacing the Silverwing market.
Oh, almost forgot, the subject of my Googlestalking yesterday was the organizer of a scooter tour of the Michigan wine country on September 13-14, 2008. As I suspected from the handsome site and the Brookfield meet-up location, it’s Alana, an old friend I haven’t seen around in a while. The ride sounds great, hopefully 2sb will be there, at least for the drinking and ferrying part.
Alix Bryan of P.E.A.C.E Scooter fame passed through Chicago while I was at Amerivespa. I’d hoped to meet her for dinner at a Korean restaurant Sunday night with some Modern Buddy folks, but I got back kind of late and some wires got crossed so I ended up eating with Ryan instead. Sorry Alix. We made this peace sign out of the banchan dishes, in your honor.
Alix got some news coverage in Cleveland the other day, and her months-long journey will end Friday (August 8, 2008) with a victory lap around the White House (a group ride leaves from Vespa Arlington at noon), then Scoot Richmond is hosting a party for her at 5pm on Saturday, featuring the final raffle drawing. Congratulations Alix!
Via Scooterfix, SX-appeal’s neat new Pak Rest case mounts on your passenger seat, giving you a backrest and storage. It’s available in tan or black. Scooterwest/Motorsport has it on sale for $109. They have some great specials, I don’t even like windscreens, but I just bought one for the Blur because it was only $50.
Alix B. left Scoot Richmond an hour ago, launching into her second P.E.A.C.E. scooter ride, circling the U.S.A. I totally dropped the ball on getting the word out about her raffle,, but we’ll be watching her blog and waiting for her in Chicago. Good luck, Alix, be safe!
Steve Williams closed up shop on his Scooter in the Sticks blog yesterday. I loved “Sticks” (as it’s called in my bookmark) for Steve’s great photography and writing, which was always sweet, personal, and meditative without ever getting sappy or melodramatic (so, basically, the exact opposite of 2SB). I’m sure whatever Steve decides to do next will be just as great, and hopefully he’ll leave it up for posterity (and so I can catch up on reading it, I’m a few posts behind).