Helpful advice, I gotta be in the wrong place. Like everyone says, get the gear, and always wear it. Get the training (MSF is a place to start looking, but there are other options as well). Get a mid-sized bike, whatever you get will be faster than what you've been driving. Dual sports are great for tall folks. I'm 6' 1" and have a number of bikes, but started on an XT350. It doesn't matter what you look like, if you're on two wheels you're way ahead.