The learning curve is steep for folks who want to enter the ranks of motorcyclist. Often, riders seem to be speaking another language. Initial confusion can be alleviated with some deft web surfing to decode the morass of letters and numbers that make up motorcycle models. Still, finding the proper bike to begin your journey to becoming a motorcyclist can be a challenge. That’s why publications, such as MO, are so important. We break the classes down into their component parts and see how they stack up against each other – which is one of the reasons we love our jobs. We act as, if not ambassadors, at least teachers for the two-wheeled life.
Still, once the neophyte has advanced to the point that s/he is actually planning on interacting with living, breathing motorcyclists, all kinds of trouble can be averted with the understanding of a few key moto-specific terms. So, study these well, and you’ll blend in the first time you roll in to the local motorcycle gathering place. Also, remember the wise words said to me by a grizzled veteran before my first trip to the famed but now defunct Marcus Dairy in Connecticut, a mere week after I started riding: “Whatever you do, when you pull into the lot, don’t do anything stupid. Everybody will notice.”