Absolutely spot on! Unfortunately my bike is loud and although the sound is nice I hate offending pople and setting off car alarms. The alternative (sewing machine noise) is not really any good either.
Anyway, good topic and am I first post for once???
I'm sure I'm not totally alone when I say that I really don't know why. There are a bunch of practical reasons. Mileage, less road wear, inexpensive compared to cars, etc. I even know that I enjoy the freedom and excitement, but there is just something that some people feel and others don't. Those that don't usually don't understand the obsession. I understand (and suffer from) it, but I can't always put into words what that feeling is.
With two small kids, work and the busy life around all that stuff. It seams ridding is still the only way to the let the brain get some relief especially up the PCH in California or in the 4 corners region of the desert southwest.
What a great statement..My first ride at 16 was a honda 504 hooked ever since. Now I have a 2004 sport and a 83 yamaha 750 I just love all styles of riding ..cant pick a favorite . Thinking of a kaw 1200 zrr this spring or mabe a duk monster dark ..any suggestions in the pesuit of perfection ?lol theski
What a great statement..My first ride at 16 was a honda 504 hooked ever since. That was 30 years ago .Now I have a 2004 sport and a 83 yamaha 750 I just love all styles of riding ..cant pick a favorite . Thinking of a kaw 1200 zrr this spring or mabe a duk monster dark ..any suggestions in the pesuit of perfection ?lol theski
It's not because it's cheaper to ride than to drive. It isn't. I got a nice #6 X 1 1/4" wood screw in my back tire last weekend. I limped the bike home on a plug and spent a little over $200 buying a new tire and getting it mounted and balanced. On the plus side, when I went out riding yesterday I rode with a burning, fiery passion because last weekend's ride was interupted so rudely, plus I had to see how my new tire felt (Excellent. I like my new Bridgestone BT-014). Chains are expensive when you don't know how to take proper care of them (my first bike), or when an o-ring disintegrates. If you change your oil according to the schedule, bike oil generally costs $3-4 per quart instead of $0.99 per quart. And other regularly scheduled maintenance seems like it is more expensive for bikes. My car got about the same gas mileage as both bikes that I've owned so far, and better than several bikes are getting nowadays. Of course, it's 1500cc engine was smaller than several bikes nowadays... It weighed less than 2000 lbs, so it didn't exactly destroy the road from the weight. I liked it, for a car. I sometimes miss my 1994 Mitsubishi Mirage. Usually when I forget to go to the grocery store for a couple of weeks and end up making 3 or 4 trips in one day.
[*]I ride because it's more satisfying.
[*]I ride because it's more fun.
[*]I ride because it allows me to smell the roses, or the river, or the freshly cut grass, etc.
[*]I ride because it lets me smell the dead skunk. After I pass the dead skunk I only have to wait a moment for the smell to go away. In a car you have to wait for all of the air inside to clear out.
[*]I ride because as long as I'm paying attention, it's safer than driving.
[*]I ride because it means I don't have to sit and wait for my engine to overheat when traffic has stopped on the interstate.
[*]I ride because I like the feel of spandex against my naked flesh. Leather alone is a bit uncomfy.
[*]I ride because I don't fit any of the old, outdated stereotypes for bikers. I don't drink, I don't smoke, I don't do drugs, I have a cleancut appearance, and I don't even cuss very much (Unless I just found a #6 X 1 1/4" wood screw in my back tire...)
[*]I ride because I've met lots of folks while riding who are decent folks who are just out enjoying themselves, like me.
[*]I ride because I'm a bit of a loner.
[*]I ride because jumping on the bike and riding off into the sunrise is getting to be a forgotten art.
[*]I ride because my mother told me not to.
"Remember: It's always easier to do things the hard way. -- Chango
Well, like they say, if you have to ask, you won't understand. And I ain't gonna bother explaining it to ya.
If you experienced riding and like it then we talk the same language. Cruisers, sports bikes, dual purposes sports, scooters or dirt bikes? It does'nt really matters so long it suits the purpose of my ride.
I ride because it's just what I do. I've been on and around motorcycles since before I was born, it's part of my genetic make-up. Anytime I have to go somewhere, my first thought is can I take the bike? I do love cars and driving them and all, but my first thought is always can I do it on the bike.
I'm not really into long distance touring or hanging out with the boyz or trying to be a tuffy, I just ride because I'd rather be out in the world than shielded away from it. I like to see the mechanical bits and the way the shapes and materials blend together and work as a whole, I like to hear a good running engine, I like to feel the rpms increase and feel the bike respond to surface irregularities, I like to feel the bike slide around a little on wet roads, or stick so well the pegs and my boots are skimming the ground, just the whole experiance. I guess it's just how I prefer to get around.
Ya know, I agree that riding IS about "smelling the skunk, saving money, clearing my head, yadda, yadda yadda...". It's all true and then some. But come on boys and girls, you're among friends here, so admit one more thing.
As much as I hate to admit it to people who won't understand, one of the satisfactions in riding is because it's cool.
If you don't feel, even a little, that you look cool, you feel cool, you ARE cool because you're going down the road on a motorcycle, any motorcycle, you're either not being honest about it or you're missing an important part of it. And you know I'm not talking about the " looking cool" part that so many seem to think is important.
For most of us these days there's not a lot of opportunity to feel different from the rest of the herd, but this is one of them. Sure the motorcycling environment has a lot going for it, but making you feel good about yourself is one of the better parts.
There is something about leaning into a turn and knowing the ground is a few feet to a few inches from your leg that not even the most expensive sports car can duplicate. Even with a full face helmet on you're a part of the scenery not just passing through it. And yes, there is some juvenile satisfaction when seeing a corvette, porsche, ferrari, whatever, knowing that my $5300 used bike could have them for breakfast. And the fact that I get 45-50 miles per gallon is all the sweeter.
Pure and simple: I ride because it's so damn much fun. I've been riding (and formerly road and drag racing) for 42 years, 90% on hardcore sportbikes. When you are young and silly, you are fearless and unless you are scaring yourself half to death, you aren't riding hard enough. Then, if you are lucky enough to survive your childhood idiocy, you discover a racetrack, you really learn how to ride, you find out what speed really is and you have the time of your life. You acquire a new respect for that speed and street riding is no longer competitive, but for pure enjoyment. You learn that speed, in the wrong places, can be downright deadly. You find that smoothness and being in complete control of your machine is paramount while negotiating your favorite roads. Doesn't mean you are all that slow either. Old farts like me still hit the twisty sections at a pretty quick clip. The difference is we are in complete control. And we just don't give a damn if someone is a bit faster (as long as they pass in a safe manner and we don't have to stop and pick them up off the next corner). We are doing this for sheer enjoyment. It works that way when testosterone matures into skill. I, too, like riding alone. Your own space, your own pace enjoying that very special communication between you, your mount, and the road. Nothing else quite like it. When I do ride with others, it's just a few riders that I know inside and out--the guys I used to race with. I spent way too many days with bike owners that blast by us on the straights, park it in the corners, and have no concept of what a real lean angle and true sportbike riding is. If I sound like a hypercritical, pompus old fart, so be it. Works for me. If I had one wish involving motorcycling, it is that riders would spend the time really necessary to learn to ride their mount and less time "talking the talk," long before they can truly "walk the walk." To me, there is nothing better than a well paced ride on your favorite roads being in complete control throughout. Thanks for listening. Enjoy YOUR ride. Cheers, Jack
Yeah, what all you guys said--I ride for those reasons. But there's another. I put on a little gear, go out to the garage, jump on the bike, and all of North and South America is mine. My driveway links to all of it. I may be going to the 7-11, but I could go to Alaska as well. Everytime I sit on my bike, I get a feeling of infinite possibilities that nothing else gives me.
And here's another. How many other big-grin fun things can we access so easily? The magic carpet is sitting in the garage waiting. So's the car (yawn) and the bicycle (snooze). Maybe the expedition climbing gear, the white water kayak, or the surfboard is there as well, but how quickly and easily can you use that stuff. You sure can't do it by just putting on come clothes, walking out the door, and hitting a starter button. Motorcycles are the best!
"See, I dont like loud bikes. I choose to enjoy my ride without forcing it on another. At 8 AM on a Sunday morning, its my fun Im after, not my neighbors irritation!"
Bless you, my son.
"My wife of thirty years recently told me that she had read of a psychiatrist that proclaimed the purchase of a motorcycle is "proof" of a mid life crisis!"
Grrr. I've had a bike since I was 18. From age 30 to 34, I was bikeless. I bought a Bandit 600, and my buddy's idiot wife said, "Midlife crisis, huh?"
I firmly reminded her I've been riding all my life. Then I pointed out to her that just about every man wants a sports car from age twelve or so, so if he has to first get a job, then buy a house, then get the kids braces, and then put them through college before he can finally buy that car at age fifty for himself, don't bust his f**king balls by saying that he's only buying it because he's pathetically insecure about getting old. He's buying it because it's the first time he's been able to do it after years of sacrificing for his family. So lay off, all you smarmy, loudmouth shrews, and thank your maker that husbands and fathers put up with so much crap.
There is more than one motorcycle championship. There's the 125, the 250... There's super bike...
But if you want to call yourself the fastest man in the world... You run in the Moto GP.
You may run 215mph down the straight away... and sometimes in as little as 100 yards, you scrub down to 45mph entering a turn. You steer the bike not with the front-wheel, but the back. You slide the back-wheel with the throttle... like you're on a dirt-track. But you're not on dirt. You're on asphalt.
You scrape your knee along the ground to give you some means of keeping your position on the bike stable. In a 3000 pound Grand Prix car shifting your weight here or there means nothing. On a motorcycle though, moving your butt 2 inches back is the difference between a back-tire breaking loose, and power-wheelie.
My hero's don't catch touchdown passes. They don't hit home runs. They don't dunk basketballs.
My hero's race motorcycles.
They risk their lives in every second of every race. They risk their lives in every second of practice.
They break bones... and yet they race. Their legs are held together with titanium rods... yet they race. They cut a hole in the boot, because the pin holding their ankle together has poked out of the skin, and that's the only way to relieve the pressure. Yet they race.
There is no Hans device. There are no crumple zones. If you wreck... and you will wreck... there is only asphalt and rock to greet you.
In the end, the racers of MotoGP are just like all athletes at the extreme. Pick out the top 25 players in the world at any given sport, and what you find is will. You find drive and determination. Focus.
Focus on the one thing that matters in the world... and to the racers in MotoGP... that one thing...
Remarkably since 1960 only one MotoGP racer has died on the track, and that, was in a vehicle with 4-wheels... not two.
So we watch these men push themselves on those... things. Things. That's what women and cowards call them. Things. The women and cowards who call these men... my heros... crazy, use that word to describe what they cannot understand.
Maybe they are bloody mad. They're mad for pushing themselves to go to the edge, and for scant brief periods, beyond it... and for going there with 20 other men, who are just as mad as they are.
I love MotoGP for the honesty. In America we have the myth of 110%. Coaches and commercials shout it. We must go 110% all the time!
Such stupidity. Any racer knows what 100% means. It means going as fast you can, while still controlling the bike. They don't claim to run at 110%. They gleefully admit to riding most laps at 95 or 98%. But there are those moments... late in the race... when the tires are warn... when the track is a little dirty... But that checkered flag lurks... and suddenly... lap-times that were dropping off... have spiked.
For two or three laps... they race past the edge. Because past the edge is where they have to be to be... Not to win. It's not about winning. It is... was... and always will be... about...
Is it maddness? In one race the men were fitted with monitors to track their heart-rates. Valentino Rossi, the dominant force in MotoGP, never had a reading higher than 120 beats per minute. Can you imagine that? Riding a motorcycle at 215mph... yet at it's peak, his heart-rate never rose above 120.
In my estimation, there is only one vehicle in the world that should have a No Fear sticker on it... whatever two-wheeled demon that happens to be screaming beneath Valentino Rossi. He's not a madman in a fit of passion. He's a child at play.
By the Grace of God... Moto GP is returning to the country that dominated it for so long. Moto GP... is coming back to America.
So as you watch your favorite sport over the next couple of months... Take some time to think... Do these men show you how to live?
I cannot ride like these men. I can only taste tiny scraps from the table at which they sit. Those scraps come on a clear summer morning... after the haze burns off... out with your boys... On a nice stretch of straight... open road. Then... just once in a while... I can throw the throttle of the big CBR open, the back wheel breaks just a little, then snatches the concrete and I feel the hand of God punch me in the chest while she rockets forward. The front-wheel goes light and moves up ever so slightly. The monster screams like demons descending on the earth, and the whole tapestry of the world stretches in my periphial vision.
Then... just for those few brief seconds... I know what it feels like to go Faster.
It's a fleeting thing. I break throttle and back her down, and the rest of the ride is after-glow.
We're a club. If you are in it, you are in it. If you are not... you are not. To the outsiders... the cagers... we're crazy. We're those people who ride those things.
So we are.
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