I love to ride motorcycles, all motorcycles, but specifically my Harley Davidson Heritage Classic. For my journey on the road of life, my Cruiser is the right bike for me at this time. In one of my first articles, I explained that I have ridden dirt bikes and fast street bikes and loved them just as much at that time. Then again, I was fifty pounds lighter and thirty years younger but, at that point on the road, they were right for me.
One of the wonderful phenomena about riding, is that no matter where you are or who you meet, you have this love of the road in common. Riding forges a strong bond of friendship based on the freedom of the open road. Letís face it, whether you are a weekend road warrior whose day job is a stockbroker or whether you are a trash collector or grease monkey, you are treated equally once you are on the road. The road and your bike donít discriminate against race, gender, or financial status. If your bike dies on the side of the road and other bikers come by, you can bet they will stop and see if they can help. There is nothing like the friendship you get from riding a bike.
That being said, then why is it, if you ride a particular style or manufacture of bike, there appears to division among certain riders? So many times, I have been out on my Harley tooling down the highway when I stop at a roadside biker stop and hear comments from other riders about my bike. Perhaps they have sleek BMWís or powerful exotic Ducatiís and they canít believe I ride a slower, heavier, Cruiser style bike. It is my choice and I respect what they choose to ride.
Is it because loud pipes are associated with choppers and Hogs? Or that when you see a rider recklessly weaving in and out of traffic on a major highway, it is usually a smaller sport style bike? If so, donít let the one or two bad apples spoil your thinking about all riders of similar styles of bikes. One of the biggest challenges facing the biker world today is the perception of the general public about motorcycle riders and how they behave and ride amongst the community. I would love to see some discussion in the motorcycle forum about the pros and cons of the two items I mentioned above.
Motorcyclists have so much going for them, such as using less fuel consumption, less parking spaces, less wear on the road, and less resources to manufacture and operate, why do they hurt our image by pushing everything to the limit? We even have a national Ride to Work day, just for bikers to show our unity and love of riding.
Canít we all just play nice and ride as one?
Until next week, ride safe.