(The Segway may not be the cause of these things, but it might be, and it seems like it’s worth writing about.)

Learning to use the Segway is not difficult, but it is rather unnatural. Instead of learning new skills, it requires that you forget old ones. You need to forget how to balance, something you’ve been doing subconciously ever since you learned to walk. And in doing so, it seems, you’re almost brought back before you did learn to walk.

Everyone who first rides a Segway starts smiling. There’s something irrestible about forgetting, about this new extension of your body sparing you all that work. So you just enjoy the moment and play. It makes the Segway fun, but also irresistable.

Ever since we picked up the Segway and put it in the car we’ve had problems. There were fights over who got to use it and for how long. That was to be expected, but fights since we got the Segway seem to have a darker character. People scream and cry and throw temper tantrums. This happens in our house occasionally, but never quite like this: never everyone, all at once. Even Mom and Dad. It’s like we are children again. Petty, squabbling children.

And in the past few days, I’ve noticed a certain aimlessness about myself. Usually when I close my eyes and introspect, I feel an urge to move on to the next thing, to do something new, to finish all the work I have begun. But now I feel nothing. Just a large emptyness inside, no particular desire to do anything. So I ride the Segway, and fight over riding the Segway.

I suspect this whole thing might sound a little weird to you, dear reader. It sounds weird to me too. All this stuff about regressing to childhood seems like crazy new-age spiritualism. And maybe it is. All I know is that we haven’t been ourselves lately.

posted December 24, 2002 09:56 AM (Personal) #


Trip Report
More opinions on the party
movie maker mentality
sidebar, segway update
segway report
segway and social harmony
segway movie: part 1
be liberal in what you accept
final(?) segway update
it’s all about the spam-readers
what should I do with my life?

Aaron Swartz (me@aaronsw.com)