Between Bird, Lime, Uber and Lyft, pedestrians have an alternative to scooting themselves around town. The fact is, between Bird, Lime, Uber and Lyft, there are approximately 35,000 rentable electric scooters in town. That’s more scooters than you can shake a GPS at. Gaming on the new market economy, as well as advancement in GPS technology, self-renting electric scooters offer an alternative to one of L.A.’s biggest no-no’s. Walking. Truth is, it’s always been very difficult to walk through LA’s neighborhoods, in light of the fact that everyone else is zipping by in a car. I’ve walked for miles in other cities such as San Francisco, New York, and London and those places just seem made for the sport of walking. Here in LA, if one wants to walk, you usually need to join a gym and get on the treadmill. For some weird indefinable reason, walking in LA has always been for the home of the brave. There are plenty of “hikes” up Runyon Canyon, where actors and writers get their weekly dose of fresh air, exercise and humiliation as someone thinner, younger and more successful sweeps right by them. This is a factor of living in LA. No matter what you have, there’s always someone with something a little bit better. One of the rules of surviving in LA is to just get over it and on with it. GPS electric scooters rock!
More Than Affordable
Scooter rental prices are really quite reasonable. For Lime, for example, to unlock the scooter will cost you a dollar, then it’s 15 cents a minute. All you do is download an app on your phone, put in your payment details, then use the app to find the nearest scooter with a full charge and you’re on your way! It’s a great way to get from here to there short distances, but can be dangerous. The scooters all come with a warning not to ride on the sidewalk, but everyone does it. Riding on the street – although I’ve seen it – can be very dangerous for obvious reasons. So, for me to park my car a few blocks away late at night, then take a scooter home, it can cost as little as 2 dollars. And when added up for the month, my parking costs are well below 50 bucks total.
Middle of the Night Recharging Elves
You may ask, how do these electric instruments get recharged? Good question. When all are asleep, indoors, and getting ready for the next day’s fight, silent men and women sweep up and down the streets, finding and collecting the scooters in their pickup trucks, take them home and recharge them. And apparently they get good money for it too. Lime calls their rechargers “Lime Juicers”.
Giving a Knee for the Environment
I live in Hollywood. Right on Sunset Boulevard. Parking around my place is nearly impossible. From homeless caravans taking up entire streets to local film production shutting down streets for filming to Netflix taking over the entire neighborhood, parking is becoming the number one sport of my village. I hurt my knee a few months ago and so walking is a bit limited for me at the moment. What I do usually when I get home is circle the blocks in my hood, trying to find as close a spot as possible. One that’s legal and will allow me to sleep as late as possible. And if it’s too far away and I’m too tired at the end of the night, I will take a scooter home. It’s actually rather fun! I highly recommend it. Even though you inevitably end up looking like an overgrown kid. And, at the end of the day, what’s wrong with that!
For the Hollywood Dog, this has been Steven Alan Green 2/24/20
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