This may be outside your area of expertise but I would like to get your thoughts on road riding etiquette because the sad truth is that I don’t get on my dirt bike nearly as much as I’m fortunate to ride my road bike to work. One of the cool things about motorcyclists is the fraternity and solidarity that transcends virtually all styles of riders whether it’s crotch rockets, cruisers, dual sports, hogs, supermotos or sport touring. It doesn’t matter if you are at a stoplight or riding past each other at a combined speed of 120 mph, there is almost always a salutation of some sort whether it’s a nod of the head or a gesture with the clutch hand. It’s our way of saying, “peace, nice bike, ride safely, two wheels are better than four, etc.”
I say virtually all styles riders because I’m not quite sure how to handle the growing number of scooter riders taking to the road these days, nor do they seem to be aware of this unspoken language. Part of me wants to sympathize with their efforts to save money on gas and applaud their entry into the world of two wheels and yet another part of me keeps hearing the old adage about mopeds and other forms of less attractive chassis, “they are fun to ride but don’t let your friends see you on one.”
So my question is, should I welcome these two-wheeled, red-headed step cousins into the brother/sisterhood of motorcycle sublimation and extend my good graces or would doing so be a bastardization of everything that is holy and sacrosanct about riding the world on two wheels? If you think they should be welcomed and indoctrinated with the proper respects then I will do my part to share the love. However, if you think that would be uncool, I could just as easily flip them off.
As usual, your advice is greatly appreciated.
Oh, that’s a toughie. On the one hand you’re glad to see more people joining the brotherhood of all things two-wheeled, even if it is on a bike built for their little sister. On the other hand its kind of hard not to point and shout, “Haha!” like Nelson from The Simpson’s every time you see a man ride by on one of those emasculated machines. I’ll tell you what: Do your best to ignore them for now. There are plenty of great bikes out there, many of them very affordable and easy to ride, so they don’t have any excuse not to get a real machine and get rid of their current bike, which was built for passengers with female reproductive parts. If they don’t realize that they are embarrassing themselves after a certain amount of time than I will give you the green light to pull out your middle finger and get to work. Happy riding.
I was just reading Mike’s suggestion on building domes at the outdoor tracks and it got me thinking. Why not have a combined Supercross/Motocross series? After all, we have the World SX and AMA series combined (although scored separately). You could run both series as they are now, just keep the points accumulating. Wouldn’t it be interesting to see who could stay healthy, who could avoid bad luck, and who could stay consistent enough in both disciplines to earn a combined title? Yes, it would make for a long season, but it might just be the next step for our beloved sport. After all, NASCAR has a very long season and they run road courses, short tracks, super speedways, etc. Most importantly, it would eliminate the issue of “SX only” deals…
If they AMA needs any help in sorting this out (and I’m sure they would)… I’d be happy to offer my services.
MSgt John C. Becker