Springfield, home of Ward 2 alderman Gail Simpson, is a wierd town. Its newspaper has some wierd stories, like Man robbed of cold 12-pack of beer.
But there is a very geekworthy item in today's paper: 'Green' invention just needs attention.
A Springfield artist and inventor named Frank Pierce has come up with a contraption that looks like a cross between two bicycles and a pair of roller skates.
If you have spent much time on the north end of Springfield lately, you might have seen Pierce on his Rollercycle. Using the same leg motion as a skater uses, Pierce tools around the streets on wheels at speeds up to 20-25 miles an hour. He does attract attention.
"I almost cause accidents because people are looking," he says. "People want to know about it, where to buy it
"During the motorcycle races (at the state fairgrounds), I put them on and went past that tavern, Knuckleheads. The motorcycle riders were all out there watching. They started clapping at me, so I cruised up there. It got a lot of attention from them."
Here's how it works: Riders strap a wheel onto each leg. In the current design, people slip into one of their shoes already attached. The next model will let them take their shoes with them when they're done.
The tires are 20-inch, high-performance models. That, Pierce says, gives his invention an advantage over rollerblades. His tires can roll over grass and brick streets.
With the tires strapped onto your legs, you simply skate. When you want to stop, press down on your heel and that engages the brakes. The stability of Pierce's invention is so good that users can stand motionless and not topple over.
There's more at the link, as well as a photo of Pierce wearing his invention.
I want a pair!
In other news, Vulcan illogically caught fire and burned.