Several of the guys where I work have purchased motorcycles recently under the guise of saving money on gasoline during the recent price increase. While some of them seem to have genuine interest in fuel conservation, I credit most of the purchases with the turmoils of a raging midlife crisis.
My reasons for believing this are the way that they posture themselves after the purchase. Hats are replaced with bandannas, coats are replaced with leather or jean jackets with fringe and patches, work shoes are discarded for leather boots, and the camaraderie between bikers becomes very pronounced.
I’ve never been a fan of motorcycles, mainly because of the increased dangers of operating them. There is simply no way that a helmet can save your life during a collision with an automobile. I have a friend that was one of the most cautious bike riders that I’ve ever met, but he was killed when an elderly person pulled out in front of him.
I fully understand the joys of having the open air on your face, the sun on your back, and feeling the rush that comes from bike riding. What I don’t understand is the need to fit into some predefined stereotype that they’ve seen portrayed in the movies.
Speaking of movies, I wonder how much of this surge in motorcycle sales can be attributed to the biker movie Wild Hogs? One coworker claims that the sales of bikes has skyrocketed this year. Surely many of those buyers watched the aforementioned movie and related to the needs of the main characters – getting a bike, riding across country to find themselves, and experiencing renewed life in the process.
That’s all fine and dandy, but how about leaving the darned bandanna at home?