Life on the street has a certain… intensity. A base-level danger combines with urban crowding to make total situational awareness a must for survival. Hostility lies in all quadrants. Lurking. Menacing. In order to flow through the biomass, one must navigate an ever-changing landscape of moving threats in plastic and steel.
Still though, I can’t even imagine life in those isolated coffins. Gridlocked, oversized vehicles with no way to move. Intersections blocked in all directions. These frustrated and raging drivers aging visibly by the minute, precious life vitality draining away. They all have to spend forever looking for a parking space or pay through the nose if they are lucky enough to find a lot with a spot open.
I can’t grok being so insulated, so –disconnected– from my transport. That’s like trying to go through life “new in box”. It doesn’t work like that. Not for me, anyway.
Now power bikes are sexy for moving through the city. Aggressive riders on one of these can tear ass from A -> B like nothing else. The unfortunate shit side of that sandwich is that unless you can keep your bike locked down at all times, your precious ride sits unprotected on the merciless city streets. It breaks my heart as I glide past beautiful bikes lying on their sides in a crumple of fractured fiber and leaking liquids. Someone is going to have a very bad day. The mentally ill do not care about your “investment in quality engineering”. They just push your bike over because it’s shiny.
I can’t imagine leaving anything of value out of arm’s reach, much less out of sight. Everyone knows even the expensive locks are a joke and alarms are useless. I never have to leave my plank behind. If I’m not riding it, I’m wearing it. I never have to park a million miles from my actual destination. I never have to trust a minimum-wage stranger not to jack my shit, or dread an inconsiderate parker scratching my finish. I can leave and be, you know, actually moving as soon as I step out the door.
Hell YES! Gimme some flow. All ridable surfaces are mine to own. I slide between the spaces; I crawl through the cracks. Move where no one is moving.
Everyone envious of my power; Envious of my freedom. Through the snarl and I’m back in the open and carving up my path once again.
Having the right gear makes all the difference in the city. Crumbling infrastructure is fucking HARD on boards. I obliterated five mid-level power planks in under 10 miles and that was without even thrashing. Just learning the power and regen curves. Getting muscle memory on the input controller and the trucks. Finding the break-point on the thane. This city chews up the weak leaving chucked motors and blown caps strewn across its sidewalks.
Thankfully some real hardware is finally emerging. Quality, power and range are all on the rise while traditional failure points are being reduced and even eliminated. The latest revs are waterproof, repairable, hackable and more. In-wheel motors eliminate problematic belts and chains. Range limitations are vanishing with larger static packs, removable battery packs, and under-an-hour recharge times.
We’ve entered the era where the ultimate riding limitations are shifting from the hardware to the rider. The latest planks can take you to your limits. The next gen will take you beyond.
Real Kourier stuff is beginning to happen. Sharpen up your skills. You’ll want ’em. These new planks are completely off the hook.
surfreQ : coastal western quadrant : earth