Jonathan (jon3) wrote,

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Why do I Ride?

I have been asked before, and undoubtedly will be asked again, Why I choose to ride a Motorcycle. It is easy for the uninformed to spontaneously spew all sorts of tragic misinformation, and even some valid criticism, about the risk/reward ratio of motorcycling. So instead of trying to explain what managed risk is, proper protection and skill, and how one shouldn't base judgements of a Real Rider on squid-like activity, I thought I'd just tell people why I ride.

Why do I Ride?

I ride for the pure pleasure in it.

If you have not ridden seriously before, let me tell you it isn't anything like driving a car. Behind the wheel of a Cage (car), most drivers use a smidgen of their brain (autopilot!) and a hand on the wheel most of the time. On a motorcycle, you just can't do that. You must drive with your whole body. The risks for a rider in an accident are more severe, so we must be exceptionally careful. Our brains have to be constantly scanning and predicting what the cagers will do. Your left foot is shifting, your right is braking, your left hand is controlling the clutch, your right hand is both controlling the throttle and the crucial front brake. Your upper legs and your weight are both keeping you on the bike, and leaning properly to maintain control. Nothing is idle when you're riding.

In a cage, even the driver is a passenger. On a motorcycle, you are in direct control. You are a part of your machine. You aren't just being carried down the road, you are flying down it. On a motorcycle, you are more than a passenger, you are the machine. In being the machine, any ride, no matter how short or simple, changes from a trip to an adventure.

So if you ask me why I bothered to ride my Motorcycle to something, I'm going to answer, "Why on earth wouldn't I?"

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