A friend sent me an article about, well, the headline says it all: “Honda’s Motocompacto scooter will satisfy your secret desire to ride an electric suitcase to work” and it made me strangely angry even before I read the article. I should know better. I’m pretty sure I’ve known the slang acronym RTFA–the polite version is “Read The Freakin’ Article”–for as long as there have been comments sections where people offer hot takes without really knowing what they’re talking about. I got angry before I realized it’s not really a suitcase. That is, it has no storage space. It’s just the least cool-looking version of a scooter ever. It’s not road-safe and would be a menace on sidewalks so I’m not sure where you’d ride it. And it doesn’t have any storage space because any added weight would just reduce its already ridiculous maximum range of twelve miles.
The ”electric suitcase” description set me off because I used to carry a lot of stuff to and from work. I still have a messenger bag, although I haven’t used it in years, that I would use for carrying writing materials, books, tablet, and assorted items back and forth. I tried to take everything that I thought I might want on the bus ride home, which is an important point. I could carry all that stuff because someone else was doing the driving. I could read, write, listen to podcasts, even watch videos occasionally if the bus’s wifi were actually working—all things I would not want to do while driving.
And let me go even further about the “electric suitcase” description because there really is such a thing which, in spite of my knee-jerk reaction to the Motocompacto, is a great idea. People with mobility issues need to be able to carry their stuff too. It might not be great for getting to and from work but it does seem like the ideal thing for getting around airports.
What I, personally, really want is a better carry-on. I don’t travel much but when I do I stuff as much as I can into a bag that will fit in an overhead bin. Checking luggage always makes me nervous because I don’t want to worry about my stuff ending up on another plane or maybe being dropped on the tarmac somewhere. Most of the time, if I can’t fit it in my three-foot-by-eighteen inch rolling case it stays at home.
In spite of traveling light anytime I show up somewhere with my carry-on I can’t resist saying, “I know I’ve got a lot of baggage but it’s okay. I’m seeing a therapist.”