Rides and Tales

Observations From Behind Bars

Its a true fact.

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The dictionary defines “truism” as a self-evident, obvious truth (e.g. “all cats are gray, at night”).

I was sent a list of truisms related to motorcycling which is posted here along with insightful commentary.

The first is a pretty good answer, I think, to the question, “Why do you ride a motorcycle?”
Four wheels move the body. Two wheels move the soul.
Perhaps the question cannot be answered satisfactorily for the un-initiated, but maybe what they really want to know is why we take the risk, rather than why we ride.
Many answers sound a little high-flown, making me wonder if the speaker spends more time riding, or making shit up.
I think the last time I was asked, “Why do you ride?” my answer tended towards, “wind in the face, tits in the back”, which is, I guess, succinct, if not very poetic.

Midnight bugs taste just as bad as noon-time bugs.
The first time I saw this it read, “Midnight bugs taste best”.
Reckon the ingredients in midnight bugs have changed, or if the operative word was, “midnight”, rather than “bugs”? I’ll field research this and get back with a report, later.

It takes more love to share the saddle than it does to share the bed.
This first came to me as, “Its harder to share a saddle than a bed”, words spoken by someone for whom a touring bike played a significant role in mending fences with his “significant other” (that’s Newspeak for “ol’ lady”), keeping them out of divorce court.

The truism also applies to couples who can’t ride together, in any sense of the word.

The best view of a thunderstorm is in your rearview mirror.
Or: “Never ride into the storm”.
Both versions can apply to situations other than inclement weather.

If you don’t ride in the rain, you don’t ride.
I’ve seen folks walk around two cages to get to the scooter so they can ride to work in near-freezing drizzle.
Others have bikes that have “never seen rain”. These bikes are not moving the soul.

Never be afraid to slow down.
Ride your own ride. Experience and skill aside, some days we are at the top of our game, and some days we are not.

Riding faster than everyone else only guarantees you’ll ride alone.
There are advantages to riding in a group… or not.

Never hesitate to ride past the last street light at the edge of town.

Always back your bike into the curb, and sit where you can see it.
Good advice since you’ll probably want to throw something at the twinkie who is dialing her cell phone while she backs her SUV towards your scoot.

The best alarm clock is sunshine on chrome.
The best alarm clock is the smell of camp breakfast being cooked by someone else.

A friend is someone who’ll get out of bed at 2:00 am to drive his pickup to the middle of nowhere to get you when you’re broken down.
This is a true fact, but remember, “if you’re gonna have a friend, you got to be a friend”.

There’s something ugly about a NEW bike on a trailer.
It’s like making a planter out of a fine guitar.

Everyone crashes. Some get back on. Some don’t. Some can’t.

Never be ashamed to unlearn an old habit.
Yeah, get off the rear brake!

If you can’t get it going with bungee cords and electrician’s tape, it’s serious.
I guess one could argue whether this should read, “zip ties and duct tape” but the idea holds water, nonetheless.

Bikes parked out front mean good chicken-fried steak inside.
That’s true in my state, at least. CFS is the national food of Texas and bikers have done extensive research on where the good stuff is.

There are drunk riders. There are old riders. There are NO old, drunk riders.

The best modifications cannot be seen from the outside.

Always replace the cheapest parts first.
I reckon this applies to trouble shooting. My thought is that if sacrificed crash bar has prevented costly damage; it should be replaced before a mirror, for instance.

Gray-haired riders don’t get that way from pure luck.


Ride long, hard and often, you know, like… that other thing


Written by fiddle mike

August 1, 2008 at 3:41 am

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