I’ve said that of a driver, I admit it. I wasn’t happy about saying those words because I believe there is a brotherhood/sisterhood among Motorcycle riders, one of supporting each other in good and in bad times. Saying that this individual was a ‘jerk’ was hard…but warranted.
You must understand that my anger came from how this rider was representing the rest of us. He was creating a stereotype and reinforcing for others, a bias enveloping all riders. Our actions as riders are under constant scrutiny, accept this!
What happened? The Deerfoot Trail is THE major highway separating Calgary from North to South. Some have affectionately labelled this stretch of road as the ‘Deerfoot 500’ after the auto race, ‘Indianapolis 500’, probably because of the recklessness of driver habits. So, I catch sight of buddy on a bike thru my rear-view mirror. From his driving habits it’s obvious that he’s making a conscious effort to disregard posted speed limits. It’s also obvious that he’s making a conscious decision to ignore signaling while weaving thru traffic & ultimately making a conscious decision to be reckless as he passed me on the shoulder. That’s when I uttered those words, ‘what a jerk’!
If you noticed, I made no mention of the bike he was on, and for good reason…because it didn’t matter: a rider is a rider! I believe as a motorcycle enthusiast we should stay clear of separating riders based on the bikes they ride. A rider on 2 wheels is a rider on 2 wheels. Show me a jerk on a sport bike and I’ll show you a jerk on a touring bike. What connects each rider with the next is our attitude and preparedness: Leave the smugness at home! Just because you have a newer, faster, bigger, shinier ride then me, is irrelevant. We both share the same road! What we don’t share is the recklessness of our actions. We as motorcycle enthusiasts must grow from our pettiness with other riders on bikes not akin to our own. We all share the same passion of the sport, so let’s embrace that first.
Talking with a Friend of mine, a rider himself, he mentioned that he avoids waving to a rider who isn’t riding a bike like his. I found this odd. If buddy has a bike and I have a bike, regardless of make or model, a wave is coming from me. I believe this simple gesture of passing a fellow rider with a wave acknowledges to that person that we are a brotherhood/sisterhood that is bonded by a common passion: riding. Consider these words the next time you strap on your helmet and fire it up.
I welcome your comments & suggestions for future topics. Please also check out my Social Media Pages…would love to hear about your experiences and your plans for your next ride.