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Why I Ride

By Motorcycle.Com Staff, Mar. 06, 2005
I was just like a lot of riders. I had a 71 XS1B650 Yamaha as a teenager that I build from a basket. I was (and am) immensely proud of that! I still remember the oil stains on my bedroom carpet. My Mother does too! When it kicked over (after a forgettable 10 minutes of leg numbing exercise), I was ecstatic! Then I learned the cost of a 150 foot slide wearing jeans and a t-shirt. Nuff said.

I got caught up in the resurgence of the motorcycle and bought a bike. A 23 year old Yamaha and faster than anything I had ever ridden. Im fifty now, supposedly wiser, andwell, older. I know what its like to skate on skin. Ive felt the doctor using a plastic pot scrubber to dig out the gravel. I know these things first hand. So why do I ride?

Riding a motorcycle is a deeply personal experience. I dont normally ride with a group; In fact, Im almost always alone. I dont share the exhilaration of a twisty mountain road or a peaceful country lane. I do these things for me. Because theyre fun. Because, on a visceral level, its truly what I enjoy. Sharing this joy is nice, but not necessary. Simply thinking about the tight turn that I jumped on is part of it. Quietly gliding through a tranquil country road is another. 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! If they never know Ive stolen their scenery, then Ive won twice.

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! I have sacrificed many things to raise a daughter through college and have two awesome grandkids. I have few vices and am very loyal. I have a good steady job that I care about. I dont break the rules. That psychiatrist can kiss my ass! Mid life crisis indeed!

Im probably the only person in America that hasnt seen a single episode of the Simpsons. Im not into fads and peer pressure doesnt effect me very much. I do what I think is right.

Riding is right!


We're not sure why Gabe does anything, Sean rides for the thrill of it all, Fonzie likes to get out and go anywhere, anytime and Ashley is a somewhat toned-down middle ground of tooling around on scooters or blazing on dirtbikes (can't get arrested on either!). Why do you ride? Thrills and escapism seem popular these days @MO... --MO

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Motorcycle.com Staff
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