Self​-​Balancing Unicycle

from by Glen Raphael

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A true story. "The High Line" is a park in New York City. I got a ticket there. I fought the ticket and got it dismissed. New York City law defines a bicycle as having two or three wheels, "in a tandem or tricycle configuration."


I was out on The High Line enjoying the day
The pull of a motor easing my way
I lean just a little and weave my way through
Up to ten miles an hour on my SBU

You see posted warnings at all of the gates
They've always banned bicycles, scooters and skates
But mine was a new thing of special appeal
With gear and a motor but only one wheel

Self balancing unicycle never hurt anyone
Self balancing unicycle just making smiles, just having fun
So why'd the policeman give me a ticket - what did I do
On my SBU?

The cop said I failed, failed to comply
With bicycle restrictions; he wouldn't say why
So I did the research, I looked up the law
Broke through all the jargon, and here's what I saw:

A bike's not a unicycle; bikes have two wheels
(or sometimes three)
The laws against bicycles don't cover me
Some wheels spin in tandem, or three to a trike
But if this odd contraption has one wheel, it isn't a bike!

So I told the justice - and she had to agree
Cancelled my ticket, setting me free
To this day I wonder, now that it's all through
If that caused such trouble
What would jumping stilts do?

Self balancing unicycle never hurt anyone
Self balancing unicycle just making smiles, just having fun
And out at the high line today you may see what true freedom can do:
I'm on my SBU!


from Lady Liberty, released August 1, 2012




Glen Raphael New York, New York

Glen Raphael is a Brooklyn-based singer-songwriter who performs songs on such nerdy and diverse topics as quantum physics, bedbugs, and the Statue of Liberty's mid-life crisis. Glen has won Best Original Song awards at NCSA events and is the current organizer of the New York City Folk Music Meetup. ... more

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