Scoot Commute

Hollywood sez to me: Hey, get in the truck…now!

Posted in Buddy St. Tropez (Franz Biberkopf), Daily Commute by sbahn on 2013/01/14

I was on campus tonight, later than usual, teaching a class for our adjuncts. As I left the building, one of the security guards saw me and yelled out the window. He threw his SUV into reverse, yelling to me to “get in, get in!”

“Huh? What’s going on?” I thought to myself as I trotted over to the truck. I got in and he threw it into drive and we went careening around the corner to the student parking lot.

“Oh no. Hollywood, something isn’t wrong, is it?” He wouldn’t answer.

We pull up to my parking spot and there’s poor, little Franz lying on his side.

“Wha? WTF? Wha?”

Hollywood hopped out of the truck and we both picked up the scoot. He barked at me, “Grab the bars!” like I’m a complete idiot and don’t know how to pick up my bike. I’ve done it plenty of times, unfortunately.

He had seen the scooter lying on the ground earlier in the day but couldn’t find me. He had come up to my office, but I must have already left to go to the classroom. He wanted me to see it on the ground, so I knew something had happened.

Now here’s the weird part. It looked like it was laid down gently. I couldn’t find any rash, no broken bits, no indent where it was hit by another vehicle, nothing. It was JUST SO VERY ODD.

Hollywood drove me back to my office, chatting about if he should take a cruise or go to Cozumel. All I could think is, I hope the scoot starts! I didn’t see any gas or liquids, but a flooded carb is a flooded carb. And he kept talking and talking…

I got up to my office and walked over to a colleague’s office and told him and the student working what had happened. They were as puzzled as I was. I work on a college campus. It’s intersession so there are very few people on campus, especially after regular office hours. And it’s a nice campus. For the most part, everyone knows each other.

I simply cannot wrap my head around the fact that someone, somehow, put the scooter on his side and left it there. I really cannot believe this.

After suiting up, I walked back over to the parking lot. The scoot started right up and I kept the throttle open to work through the gas. It cut out after a few seconds. I tried the electric start a couple of times; nothing. I tried kicking it a few times, just to not wear out the battery; still nothing.

I finally got it started again and just held the throttle open. He decided to stay on. I got on and started to ride around the lot, testing the brakes.

“Hmm, the front brake lever is weird.” That’s when I noticed the right lever was curved all short.

And that made me mad. The entire ride home I was thinking how I would phrase the sign to put on the bike for tomorrow. This is what I’ve come up with.

To the person who hit me and knocked me down…you knew the right thing to do, and chose not to do it.

At least Franz is still rideable, but I’m really annoyed. My campus is too nice for this type of event. Hollywood told me to talk to the Major about a better parking spot. I would love to be back in the spot they made for me when they redid the parking lot entrance, but cars keep parking in it.

Just too weird.


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