I had a 1950s-style upbringing in the 1980s in what was a very low-tech household and I point to that as my excuse when I'm routinely flabbergasted by the wonders of the modern world.

It was thus at a friend's house when he decided he wanted a specific type of thermometer to check his baby's temperature so looked it up on Amazon and had it delivered before I'd finished my cup of tea. My mind - blown. His mind: blown at discovering this was new to me.

I'd like to tell you this was five years ago but it was more a few months. And so, I have been very late coming to food delivery apps. Open the app, choose what you'd like for dinner, someone drops it at your front door a short while later.

If I was rich I would never cook again. Such convenience.

But will we never learn that convenience for one group of people doubtless has a knock-on effect for another group of people? What cost my hand-delivered kimchi pancake?

Well, a high cost for the hand-deliverer.

Deliveroo, one of several high-profile food delivery services, said that during the pandemic its delivery rider numbers doubled from 2020 to 2021 to more than 50,000 across the UK.

Delivery riders are one of the fastest-growing forms of employment and no wonder. Ordering food on demand at all hours is an extravagance, a luxury, but one that has become utterly mainstream and taken for granted.

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And because it's just so taken for granted we expect the food to be delivered fast without any thought for how exactly our desires are being served.

The delivery riders are classed as self-employed so they do not benefit from national insurance contributions, there is no company pension, there is no holiday pay. Couriers earn around £60 to £80 for 12 hours’ work while the Bureau of Investigative Journalism found riders were earning, on average, less than national minimum wage for those over 25 while it also spoke to one who was earning just £2 an hour.

Riders talk about hanging around for an hour between deliveries, dead time for which they are not paid. One told a newspaper that it was akin to waiters only being paid for the time they carry plates to the table.

To earn any kind of money the delivery riders have to compete for jobs and they have to take on as many jobs as they can. And so, is it any wonder the bikes they use have moved from bikes to e-bikes to these chunky, fast, careening road monsters that seem to darken the way of every bike lane in every city?

These things feel menacing and intimidating and I am sure I'm not alone in feel a twinge of dread every time I see one coming towards me. They give me the collywobbles every time.

I know two people who have been injured by delivery e-bikes - the ones with fat, fat wheels and hand protectors on the handlebars - and feel a sense of 'there but by the Grace of God'.

Ben Williams, a PhD student who also happens to be a friend of a friend of mine, spoke to the BBC about an awful incident he endured with a food delivery driver.

He was on a two-lane bike path when a food delivery courier travelling the wrong way and, Ben thinks, using his mobile phone while riding an electric bike crashed into him. He ended up with a torn kidney, was very ill and had to move back to Manchester from Glasgow to stay with his parents during his recovery.

The issue, which has been ongoing for some time, has hit the headlines recently with a spate of media coverage of these bikes, what are technically called electrically assisted pedal cycles (EAPC).

An electric bike is supposed to give the rider a wee boost but not take on all the work. So, you should always need to pedal and the electric assistance should cut out when the bike hits 15.5mph.

Any e-bike which continues to assist the rider after 15.5mph or doesn't need them to pedal at all are are not classed as EAPCs and require a licence, a helmet, tax and insurance and can only be ridden on roads or unrestricted byways.

David Kennedy, general secretary of the Scottish Police Federation, pointed out that some people will buy e-bikes assuming they are legal because it's possible to buy them and not realise what they've bought is classed as a moped.

Some of the bikes hurtling up the cycle lanes - often going the wrong way - certainly look like mopeds.

Electric bikes used for couriering should be a really positive step. Since the first covid lockdown the number of companies using electric cargo bikes has soared and there are around 450 independence businesses and tradespeople using them UK-wide.

They cut carbon emissions and make streets quieter and roads safer. But when used as the law intends them and when used responsibly.

The problem is they're a menace.

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Police Scotland is obviously upping the public visibility of its officers' actions to prove it's doing something on the issue: the force's various X accounts have been posting about e-bike seizures and associated arrests.

The Greater Glasgow account posted that 12 illegal e-bikes were seized last weekend as part of what it said was an "operation targeting those riding illegally modified electric bikes capable of going at high speeds".

The Road Policing Scotland X account posted that a cyclist who failed to stop at a red traffic light at a pedestrian crossing. While officers from the motorcycle unit were dealing with him, they found he was in the UK illegally, he was arrested and is now being dealt with by the Home Office.

The cyclist is on a modified e-bike with an orange food delivery bag.

Cycling Scotland rightly says that a long term approach has to be taken. Food delivery companies must give cycling safety training, plus check that their couriers are using legal and road worth bikes but there's no sign of that any time soon.

I worry, though, that the conversation around these illegal bikes sidelines or even dehumanises the people riding them. Do I want the bikes off the pavements and bike lanes? I do. Do I want people arrested and deported because, ultimately, they were forced by market pressures into making bad decisions? I do not.

My chain came off my bike the other week in Glasgow's South City Way bike lane. The only person who stopped to help was an Uber Eats cyclist. He didn't speak much English but he took my bike and flipped it and re-fitted the chain, despite the value of his time.

"I just feel worthless," a Deliveroo cyclist recently told a newspaper. "Most customers are fine, but a significant minority treat you like a personal servant. They don’t even look at you when they take their food."

If you start to treat someone like they're invisible they begin to act like they're invisible and that is when accidents happen.