The Australian scooter story got me thinking about Razor Scooters and all the hype that came along with it! It was supposed to replace bikes as the new mode of transportation for young teenagers. For anyone growing up in Suburbia, USA you know this actually happened for about 2 years in the early 2000’s. I was laughed up and down the neighborhood for riding a bike while all the other kids had scooters. Until my birthday finally rolled around and my parents go me a scooter, except it wasn’t a razor scooter. I immediately turned into a Brat and demanded to be taken to Toys R Us so I could return that knock off piece of shit and use my birthday money to purchase the real deal, a Razor Scooter! (Jesus Christ kids are a nightmare)
Anyways I’ve decided to rank the top 5 modes of transportation for kids in the late 90’s early 00’s.
5. Soap Shoes
I’ll be honest here I never had these soap shoes but I know they were banned from my middle school. I remember them catching on for about 2/3 months but then quickly fading out again. It was pitched as a shoe that ‘grinds’ thus helping you reach your destination quickly and looking like a bad ass. however most people just looked like assholes and were more likely to break their ankle then to impress any girls.
4. Inline Skates
I may be in the minority here because I grew up playing inline hockey (no ice rinks around) but skates were a pretty big part of my transportation. My very first pair were fished out of a dumpster by my lunatic of a Grandfather but they looked exactly like the pair pictured above and I thought I was so cool. I got my neighbor and a few friends to skate/play hockey with me. the street but it was never a neighbor-wide trend. And as you know when you are growing up it’s all about the trends so for that Inline skates are at #4 in the rankings.
Skateboards were always for the slightly older, slightly scarier kids who were always ‘up to no good’ according to my mom. I think that’s why my parents never got me a skateboard; they didn’t want me to fall into that crowd. I would say the rise of the skateboard, and the lifestyle that came along with it, is the reason for a split in my neighborhood friends. We went from a group of about 16 down to about 7-9 of us. The neighbor-wide games (cops and robbers, survivor, hide and seek, capture the flag, etc.) really took a hit after that. A sad time in young Doc’s life tbh. But there is no denying the popularity of skateboards at that age so it comes in at no. 3 on the list.
The staple in every American kid’s life, the Bike. No doubt number one on the all-time list, but in the 00’s it had to ride on the back pegs of the Razor Scooter. Nothing quite like having two wheels and some metal underneath you as you bomb down a hill. Also nothing quite like getting a ‘Snake bite’ from the pedal. The tricks possibilities were endless (no hands, wheelies, ghost riding, ramp jumps, etc.). This mother fucker
That thing led to more “Go get his mom!” moments in our neighborhood than anything else. How they allow kids to use that thing is beyond me.
Having a bike was a rite of passage but then again it was also a popularity contest. Everyone had a mountain bike and I was riding a bike from Walmart, and then when I finally got a mountain bike (also from Walmart) everyone got a BMX bike! I couldn’t win! Always zagging when everyone else was zigging, not a good thing for a 13 year old. Best thing that ever happen to me back then was when my buddy and I would switch bikes. One time he was on my bike and popped a wheelie, and in the middle of the wheelie the front tire just falls off and he eats it, hard. My bike was all jacked up. I carried the bike and the tire home as my buddy was on his way to the hospital but it all worked out because the next weekend I went out and got a BMX bike and was part of the crowd again! Until…
1. Razor Scooters
Razor Scooters came out and quickly became the must have mode of transportations. It was the one thing that reunited everyone in the neighborhood. We cruised through the NeighborHood on those things bunny hopping, tail whipping, 180ing until it got dark. Truly a once in a generation product that convinced kids everywhere they were going to be in the X-Games. It also had its own variation of a ‘Snake Bite.’ There were several times where I was convinced I’d never walk again. When you hears the sound of metal hitting the bone you knew right away you or your buddy’s day was ruined. If you grew up in the early 00’s, you owned a razor scooter, if you didn’t you were a nerd plain and simple. This is the undisputed champion of transportation in the 00’s.