One of the most powerful traits we humans have is the ability to choose. While we are often caught saying, “I have to do it. I don’t have a choice,” we really do. Have to get up Monday morning for work? No, not really. Have to go to school? No you don’t. Have to stay in a job or a life you are not happy with? Not true. Change is only a decision away. Sure, the consequences of your choice might not be desirable, but you still have that ability to make up your own mind. Except in one case…motorcycles!
What? Preposterous? Hear me out. I was at a work gathering a few weeks ago. One of my coworkers is a dedicated rider. He probably rides to work 95% of the year. I’ve seen his bike in the lot when snow was on the road. We started chatting about bikes. Another manager stopped by and joined the conversation. He said, “I have thought about buying a bike, but I just don’t trust myself or other drivers.” Fair statement. One that I fully understand. To be a rider, you have to not only be vigilant about other vehicles on the road and the decisions they make, you have to also keep your emotions in check, as the ride can become intoxicating.
So, here we have two guys who ride and one guy who has considered riding. The two riders don’t “consider” riding. They ride. They always have, they always will, statistics be damned. Danger be cursed. If they are not riding every day, they are thinking about riding every day. When they think of vacations, they think of bikes. When they are asked, “What are you doing this weekend?”, the answer usually consists of a bike ride somewhere. I don’t really know what to compare it to. It’s like being born into your particular household. It is who you are. There is no decision to make. You don’t even think about it. It just is.
Well, I was born a motorcycle rider. No decision. No thought. Once I threw a leg over that first mini bike back in 1966, the decision was made: this is who you are. It is not just a part of my life, it is my life. I’m stir crazy enough as it is. In bad weather I pace the house like a lion in a cage. If I ever decided not to ride, my wife would have to throw me out or I would drive her insane! See? No choice.
As I grow older, I plan to ride more, not less. I plan to ride until the day I am no longer physically able