Archives: Talking Segways with Chris Capuano

This interview actually picks up halfway through. My first two questions for Capuano were about the spring training game he had just started. He gave thoughtful answers, as he always does, but they were total softball questions. I asked those two first because I didn’t want to approach a stranger and just start shooting off questions about Segways. I feel this is a fairly reasonable desire.

Originally published March 8, 2011:

After his start against the Nationals today, I asked Mets pitcher Chris Capuano about his reported Segway ownership. Segways, as many of you probably know, are personal transport vehicles that look like this:

Here’s what Chris had to say:

Patrick Flood: I’ve heard that you have a Segway. Is this true?

Chris Capuano: I sold it.

PF: You sold it? How come?

CC: Well, I was injured in ’08, and I was in Arizona for almost two years rehabbing. And the Segway just wasn’t as much fun in those big wide-open spaces out west as it was in urban environments when I had it before. It was fun, you know, I had it in Milwaukee primarily, riding down by the lake or riding downtown. In Arizona everything’s spread out, and it’s hot, so it just wasn’t the best place for it.

PF: Are you thinking about getting it again? You’re going to be in New York.

CC: Maybe someday.

PF: Because there are people on the streets of New York riding Segways.

CC: Maybe someday. I could withstand the heckling [in Milwaukee], but I think in New York it might be at another level.

PF: Are you an Arrested Development fan?

CC: That’s where I first learned about the Segway.

PF: Okay, and . . . wait, and then you got one anyway?

CC: Absolutely. That’s where I first saw it, yeah, and whenever I saw the show, I said to myself, “I’m going to have one of those someday.” And as soon as I got to the big leagues and was up there for a couple of years, I got one. And I loved it, had a blast on it. Do you like that show?

PF: I do. I’m a huge fan. That’s what I’m imagining right now.

CC: I just picture [G.O.B. Bluth] riding up and stopping on that thing.

PF: Yeah.

CC: I used to ride the thing — they have an x2 and an i2. The x2 has an all terrain kind of wheels, and the i2 is skinnier, it’s more for commuters. I could ride it right into my building, right into the elevator, out of the elevator, into my apartment — I never had to get off the Segway.

PF: Can it go up stairs?

CC: Not with you on it. You actually get off it, and just lean the thing forward and pull it up the stairs. It has these tires that are silicone based, you can ride it inside, it’s not going to mess up the floors. It’s a blast, it’s a blast. You ever ride one?

PF: No, I’ve never been on one.

CC: If you ever get the chance, go do a Segway tour. It takes about five or ten minutes to get the hang of it.

PF: Is it as intuitive as it seems?

CC: It’s very intuitive. After about ten minutes – it’s kind of like skiing. It’s all lean steer, so whatever way you lean. It sort of feels like skiing a little bit, but after a while you just go. I could be a Segway salesman.

PF: You really could be; I think you just talked me into it. I don’t know if I could afford one, but . . .

CC: Used is the way to go.

PF: Is there a big used market for Segways?

CC: I think there is.

PF: Really?

CC: Yeah, because you get a lot of malls, airports, that want to get the newest models. They’re about $5,500 new, but you could probably get one for $2,500 used. It’s worth it.

PF: Even with the heckling?

CC: Yeah. It’s actually like a confidence building exercise. If you can feel cool riding a Segway, you can feel cool riding just about anything.

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