It’s spring time and that means, for me and a few of my friends at least, that motorcycle season is back in full effect! This year will be my fifth season riding, been a whole lot of miles, and over those long rides I have come up with a list of things that are honestly not the most glamorous or fun for that matter when it comes to riding. In no certain order here is a list of things I know I will hate with the upcoming season at hand:
- Clueless Drivers: Driver’s never bother to check their blind spots ever. More than once I will have to give ample space to the clueless driver in the other lane because they refuses to look all the way over to make sure it’s clear before they merge. Like c’mon guy, I AM RIGHT HERE! What are worse is distracted drivers, you know the type, soccer moms in their large vans full of kids going for pizza, hooting and hollering in the back while having a cell phone glued to one side of their face. Yea. When I see this I promptly slow down and move far, far away, another galaxy if possible. I don’t want to end up on the 6 O’clock news because she didn’t bother to look over her shoulder. Or the ones that Jake brakes in front of you. They probably DON’T realize the stopping power of a motorcycle’s front brakes compared to their entire car, so when those big red taillights light up frantically because the driver wasn’t paying attention, guess who has to slam on their brakes? Me. Probably did an endo right into the back of their trunks.
- Weather Man Being Wrong: You’re cruising along and it’s a great sunny day out, all because the weather man said it will be. BAM! Crack! FLASH! Guess what? Now it’s a torrential downpour. It happens more than you think and it sucks through and through. Great day ruined by rain. Riding in it isn’t bad, you just have to be more careful than usual, and when I say more I mean ‘HOLD ON FOR DEAR LIFE!’
- Red Lights For Eternity: Bikes aren’t heavy machinery, at most they weigh 400lbs. Some of my friends can bench press that. So when you come to a red light, especially LATE AT NIGHT when the systems work on a different timer, you’re screwed. The bikes are not heavy enough to set off the pavement detector; usually cars would but not us. So we are left there looking like fools for 10 minutes because it won’t turn green. What do you do? You wait. Look around. THEN JUST GO WHEN NO ONE IS THERE. Or else say hello to the next car coming, however long that will be.
- Death of a Million Bugs: SPLAT! That is pretty much all you’ll hear if you don’t have headphones when you ride during the depth of summer months. It’s like rocks from trucks hitting you, but in reality it’s thousands of flying bugs smacking against your bike, leathers and visor. PEW PEW PEW. Over and over again. The aftermath? Once you take off your gear it’ll be adorned in the most colorful of greens, reds, oranges and yellows. Had an appetite? You won’t after taking a look at that mess. Oh have fun cleaning it too, because I surely did not.
- The Bike Wave: When you ride a bike you are somehow part of this ELITE uber fantastic club in which you wave to everyone who is riding in the opposite direction. The motto? Wave or wave back there is no try. Any upcoming bikers in the opposite lane will have me thinking ‘Damn will they wave back? What if they wave first and it’s too late for me to wave back? Will they see it? THE PRESSURE!’ A lot of riders go out and think about this before hand, and for me, eh if they wave they wave, I will wave back, and we do share some common interest. But if a scooter waves at you and you wave back we are no longer friends!
- Squids: They are the motorcycle world equivalent of ricers which is the car world equivalent of band wagoners. You find them by the flocks when it is riding season. Typical no gear wearing, sometimes no helmets if the state is dumb enough to allow it, doing wheelies in streets, cutting in and out of cars, riding on sidewalks, revving their throttle to high heaven at each red light. They give the motorcycle community the worse name, and of course the few ruin it for the many. Oh if they are wearing shorts, tshirts and flip flops they have upgraded themselves to octopus status.
- Sweaty Balls: Literally and figuratively. When it gets to be 85+ out and HUMID say goodbye to your future unborn children. Nothing like sitting on a 200 degree+ motorcycle with not the grandest of cooling systems, in traffic whilst wearing all your gear. Sweat will be trickling down your brows, face, arms back and ass. Everywhere really. Probably the best time to wish for a downpour to be honest.
- Small Gas Tank: It’s true my gas tank is small. OK jokes out the way bike’s tanks aren’t that big, and if you are riding far to get to where you are going you better be having the greatest throttle control of the earth because running out of gas while riding is NOT FUN. Ask me how I know?! Actually ran out of gas in front of my college once, had to push it to the back lot and endure stares upon stares from onlookers. Embarrassing to say the least. Watch your fuel gauge. DON’T BE THAT GUY!
- Buns of Steel: Ever sat on an uncomfortable chair a long period of time? Ever had it go numb? Ever walked like you have been hit by a bus? Try riding on a bike for 2 hours non-stop. Your man parts, or woman parts for the lady riders out there, buttocks, wrists, back and psyche will be drained and sore in no certain order of course. Have fun walking the next day because riding for 300+ miles a day will be a better work out for your legs than that beasty gym rat at the squat rack.
OK so I said there was 10 things I hate about bike season when it is bike season, but I can only think of 9 that I PERSONALLY HATE. There are a ton of these lists out there in the world as well but I wanted to give a more honest answer to it. Overall if I were to be honest all these pitfalls never take away from my riding experience. Anytime I throw a leg over my steed I have a great time where it is a track day, a lunch time ride, cruising with my friends around town, or some back road twisty, the pros always outdo the cons.
Get out and ride!