I recently sold my 1964 Sears Allstate scooter. The scooter was featured on the cover of the April 2012 issue in our parody of the Life magazine Hollister cover. I had the scooter for over 10 years and the most fun I had with it was the photo shoot for the cover. I poured too much money into it and my nephew spent way too many frustrating hours repairing it. I’ve owned some old motorcycles but this thing was primitive to the point of baffling. I’m not going to miss it.
I posted the scooter on craig’s list back in early July and the response was what I expected. I was asking way to much money, would I be interested in a trade, can I come and look at it and then never show up. I did have a couple come and look at it and they brought their demon child. This kid broke a yard light and tore branches off a shrub and was just generally unpleasant. His parents weren’t much better. They offered me half of what I was asking and seemed insulted when I didn’t accept it. They also knew absolutely nothing about scooters.
After several back-and-forth emails with a guy, I accepted a trade and some cash for the Allstate. We scheduled a time for him to come to my house and make the deal. Normally I don’t make transactions like this at my house due to the wackos who do their shopping on craig’s list. I talked to this guy on the phone several times and he seemed like a good guy. He not only showed up but he was on time. This was new to me. I’ve sold a lot of stuff on the interwebs and it has always been more like waiting for the cable guy. They either hit a four hour window or never appear.
The item I traded for was a homemade go-cart. It has a two-stroke, 340 snowmobile motor on it. I have visions of an ice racer or at the very least, some really dangerous fun. Of course, like most deals I make of this nature, it needs some work. Like a seat, fuel tank and brakes. Nothing major. This is where my lovely bride just looks at me and shakes her head.
What makes this deal worth writing about, is who my scooter ended up with. It turned out the scooter was not for the guy I had been dealing with but his 14 year old son. We pulled the go-cart off their trailer and I rolled the Allstate out of the garage. The kid lit up like the fourth of July. I got it running and showed them all the eccentricities of a 50 year old scooter. The kid could not stop smiling. He couldn’t wait to get it in his shop. His dad told me his “shop” was a 10’ x 12’ shed he built for him in the back yard. The kid had built a work bench and had been taking apart old appliances until he got the go cart.
It turned out he had been looking for a scooter like mine for a year but they were always too expensive. He knew more about old Vespas than any teenager I ever met. It was great to talk to a kid who was more interested in turning wrenches than playing video games. He handed me a wad of bills and his dad covered what he was short. We strapped it to the trailer, I gave him a poster of the April cover for his shop and he left grinning from ear-to-ear. I still smile when I think about it. I didn’t put very many miles on the Allstate but it did give me some good stories to tell. I got a hunch it’ll do the same for him.