Rolling Bookbags. Pure Irritation. Articles
I've had personal experience with rolling bookbags, and quite frankly, if find them inadequate for daily heavy-
duty use. Of course, I tend to keep all of my books in the bag, without using my locker. Some rollers are better
than others, but in the end they just can't handle rough abuse. Most bags have an extendable handle that
runs the length of the bag and is directly connected to the bottom and wheels. Some bags also come with
straps so that they can be used as a normal backpack. Here are my concens:
- Unimpressive protection. Most rollers have little or no protection from the elements, especially water.
The standard backpack is shielded by the umbrella and is also suspended from the wet ground.
Meanwhile, a rolling bookbag, besides being extremely close to the ground, wicks up the water. Some
packs even have a wooden base, which also absorbs the water and makes your paper a soggy mess.
- Overtip Syndrome. Especially if you overload the backpack, the feet that are supposed to prop the
bag upright when you're not pulling it do not work. They are mounted to close to the wheels, so that a
slight breeze will tip the bag over. This condition is worsened if you expand the bag and drape a jacket
on the extended handle.
- Late-Time-Lagger. No matter how good the bearings on the wheels are, they will eventually succumb
to the grime that accumulates in the wheels. When this happens, the bag imposes a significant drag,
which may prevent you from getting on the bus or getting to class.
- Fellow Student Vulnerability. Because the bookbag is dragged behind you, this gives other students
a perfect opportunity to trip the bag and delay you even further. Moreover, a person can easily steal
your belongings because you may not feel the robbery over the dragging of the bag.
- Lacking Adaptations. The normal strap bag does not experience nearly as much wear as a rolling
bag. So the rolling bookbag manufacturers should reinforce the material on the bottom to resist holes.
But nooo, within a few months the front of the bag is full of holes because of the Overtip Syndrome.
- Handle Malfunction. When your bag tips over unnoticed, someone is bound to step on the extended
handle. And since the handle is suspended slightly, it bends. Also, the movements of dodging extended
feet of your schoolmates exerts twisting pressure on the handle, and so does making sharp turns.
- Bully Magnet. Thing is, having a rolling bookbag really opens up a wide range of possibilities for
bullies. Even without bullies, the rolling sound is bound to make you feel... unique. Then, bullies can
laugh at you and your bag, and because it is so low, can kick it.
- Horrible Handling. In a hallway full of students, a rolling bookbag is less than ideal. You're bound to
drag it over someone's foot. Also, the bookbag cannot handle stairs, forcing the user to carry it by hand.
If your bag is really heavy, you can just drag it down the stairs, but at the cost of your wheels and
silence. One of the reasons people use these rolling backpacks is because they can carry heavier
Here are some things I would like to see put on rolling backpacks in the next century.
- Larger wheels with more clearance
- Waterproof, reinforced bottoms
- extendable feet to compensate for Overtip
- Sealed bearings or electric-drive system to increase productivity
- better handles
- all-around better durability
These things are extra luxury goodies I don't expect to find in the next millenia. (That is, unless Lexus starts
making backpacks :-})
- self-controlling system that automatically follows you
- some sort of bully-defense/defence system
- shock absorbers
- Electronic Stability Control
- automatically arranges contents
- computer with GPS and voice recognition
- windshield wipers