Mods or Rockers?
My family circa 1997. We look like we were riding that ultra-mod scooter, but we weren't, really, just there for the photo op. But the hat is real, Greg is a man with style.
I did get to ride a beautiful 1958 Vespa scooter during my college years. It was a great vehicle for the flat streets of Eugene. I got on a few highways and sped along at about 45 mph, keeping up with the cars pretty well. Once I rode my friend Karen all the way to a party in Fall Creek. With sleeping bags! The scooter waited patiently all night in the woods, and then rode us back in the morning.
Every time I got gas, I had to open up the little compartment in the back wheel well, and take out a tiny flagon of motor oil, and a small measuring cup. I would measure out the correct percentage of oil and pour it into the gas tank along with the gas. Then, I would take out a rag from the compartment, and wipe down the cup, and stow them away. It was quite the performance! I think I never got more than $1.50 worth of gas at a time, it was cheaper and the scooter didn't use much.
There were guys in highschool that were so mod it hurt. But they did look fantastic. David Lickey, Thatcher Trombley, Pat Gould, Eliot Rocket. You mod street mechanics know who you are! They had a fleet of scooters that the Who would envy, and kept somehow kept them running, even after racing them recklessly up the alleys near campus. They were guerilla mods, and were no stranger to traffic citations. I got my fair share of tickets, too...but not so much for recklessness as for not having the right mirror configuration, or my vintage breaklight wouldn't work, or I failed to use my unpredictable turn signals.
It wasn't easy to pass my motorcycle endorsement test, either. I consistently failed to make the braking requirements, because of the vintage of the brakes. Somehow, they waved me through anyway. Add to this the fact a bee had flown into my helmet on the way over, and stung me. Not a great experience, on the whole.
My scooter has shown up in my art a few times, it has great graphic style, and lovely shapes. I use it as a model, and change the color accordingly.