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Alternative modes of travel

Steven Stuts, a 5th year music student, rides a Trikke to and around the Coral Gables campus, which he purchased in middle school. Adrianne D'Angelo//Asst Photo

With so many different buildings spread across campus, the average Cane covers a lot of ground in a full day with class, jobs, extra-curricular activities and just time hanging out with friends. Students rush from one place to the next, mostly on foot, but some find more efficient ways of traveling throughout campus.

The most popular traveling mechanism is the bicycle, which is also conveniently provided by the bookstore for purchase. However, there are some students that prefer a more unconventional way for going the distance.

Senior Steven Stuts has to travel a long distance to class every morning since he lives in the University Village apartments. To save time, the vocal performance major rides his Trikke, a three-wheeled scooter that utilizes side-to-side movement to propel forward.

Stuts’ parents bought him the Trikke eight years ago and he decided to bring it to campus last year.

“I just got tired of waiting on the shuttles,” Stuts said. “I thought, why not have some fun while going to class. I just figured it would be fun to bring.”

The New York native does have a car, but the only time he isn’t on his scooter is when it’s raining. According to Stuts, it is not only fun to ride, but it also provides a great workout for the legs and upper body.

Stuts loves riding around campus on his Trikke and especially loves the reactions from other students when they ask how to ride it or when they jump out of the way and stare.

“People are like ‘what’s that?’ or ‘that’s awesome,’” Stuts said.

Junior Alex Locust gets some of the same reactions. Instead of a Trikke, Locust’s choice of travel is to roller blade. Locust was born with only one leg, so he uses crutches to get around campus, although he said he would rather skate when weather permits. Since he is a psychology major, Locust has classes in the Flipse Building, which is attached to the Ponce Parking Garage, as well as a few night classes. Like Stuts, Locust grew tired of waiting on the shuttle.

“I like it because I control when I get back and forth,” Locust said.

Even though Locust gets where he’s going faster, he’s still aware of reactions of passers by as he zooms by.

“I am always afraid that I’ll run into people. I don’t want to be that guy that runs over people,” he said.

Even some freshmen have quickly caught on to the added punctuality and fun that comes with replacing wheels for feet. When freshmen friends Dante’ Charles, Eric Peterson and Richard Tema went shopping and came across some Razor scooters, typically ridden by grade schoolers, they decided to put an end to their tiresome walks on campus for good. The trio met at the start of this school year and share a tower in Stanford Residential College. Ever since the purchase of the scooters they’ve been hooked.

“I don’t know what walking feels like anymore,” Peterson joked.

The three have made a name for themselves as they swiftly scoot through campus and they eventually came up with the name Scoot Phi Scoot, as a play off of the fraternities they’d seen on campus, equipped with a Facebook group page and over one hundred fans.

They not only appreciate getting around campus faster, but also have fun doing it. All three proclaim the scooters to be their primary source of transportation.

“When we’re not on the scooters people ask where they are,” Tema said.

Many might wonder, why scooters? According to Scoot Phi Scoot, skateboards are too unstable and bikes are too big. The two-wheeled glider is just enough for the guys which are new to the campus. With just one kick, they’re on their way.

Like Stuts and Locust, the men of Scoot Phi Scoot’s main concern is getting where they need to be on time, but doing it an unconventional way to add a little fun to the day.

“[Riding the Trikke] keeps me entertained while going to class and the reactions from people keep me entertained too,” Stuts said.

Jasmine Henderson may be contacted at jhenderson@themiamihurricane.com.

October 6, 2010

Reporters

Jasmine Henderson

Contributing Columnist


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The Miami Hurricane is the student newspaper of the University of Miami in Coral Gables, Fla. The newspaper is edited and produced by undergraduate students at UM and is published weekly on Thursdays during the regular academic year.