Monday, October 22, 2007

A Few Words About Bikers

This is the Spousal Unit and me on our final ride of 2006.

Someone sent me these words in an e-mail today at work. Don't let the leather and tattoos fool you, most bikers are very decent folks and work hard for their money just like you. They enjoy the same things you do--a lovely summer day, good times spent with friends and family, watching birds, gardening and knitting. If you get the chance, please share it with your biker and non-biker friends and the next time you pass a biker, give them a nod and smile. It will make their day and yours too. Thanks!

My Dad And I Both Are Bikers As Are Some Of Our Friends, So Please Think Next Time You See Some Of Us Out On Our Bikes!

I saw you, hug your purse closer to you in the grocery store line.
But, you didn't see me, put an extra $10.00 in the collection plate last Sunday.

I saw you, pull your child closer when we passed each other on the sidewalk.
But, you didn't see me, playing Santa at the local mall.

I saw you, change your mind about going into the restaurant.
But, you didn't see me, attending a meeting to raise more money for the hurricane relief.

I saw you, roll up your window and shake your head when I drove by.
But, you didn't see me, driving behind you when you flicked your cigarette butt out the car window.

I saw you, frown at me when I smiled at your children.
But, you didn't see me, when I took time off from work to run toys to the homeless.

I saw you, stare at my long hair.
But, you didn't see me, and my friends cut ten inches off for Locks of Love.

I saw you, roll your eyes at our leather coats and gloves.
But, you didn't see me, and my brothers donate our old coats and gloves to those that had none.

I saw you, look in fright at my tattoos.
But, you didn't see me, cry as my children were born and have their name written over and in my tattoo heart.

I saw you, change lanes while rushing off to go somewhere.
But, you didn't see me, going home to be with my family.

I saw you, complain about how loud and noisy our bikes can be.
But, you didn't see me, when you were changing the CD and drifted into my lane.

I saw you, yelling at your kids in the car.
But, you didn't see me, pat my child's hands, knowing he was safe behind me.

I saw you, reading the newspaper or map as you drove down the road.
But, you didn't see me, squeeze my wife's leg when she told me to take the next turn.

I saw you, race down the road in the rain.
But, you didn't see me, get soaked to the skin so my son could have the car to go on his date.

I saw you, run the yellow light just to save a few minutes of time.
But, you didn't see me, trying to turn right.

I saw you, cut me off because you needed to be in the lane I was in.
But, you didn't see me, leave the road.

I saw you, waiting impatiently for my friends to pass.
But, you didn't see me. I wasn't there.

I saw you, go home to your family.
But, you didn't see me.
Because, I died that day you cut me off.
I was just a biker. A person with friends and a family.
But, you didn't see me.

Repost this around in hopes that people will understand the biker community. I hope you never lose someone that rides. Have a great week my friends.
~~Author unknown~~


Robin (Bumblebee) said...

My field is marketing research. I SWEAR that I read a research study not long about about people who are into motorcycling. They are:

1) More likely than the average person to read poetry;
2) More likely to say they appreciate flowers; and
3) More likely to say they appreciate little animals.

Gotta love bikers. OBTW, my dentist is a biker. So is my 80-year-old uncle.

--Robin (Bumblebee)

Lisa at Greenbow said...

This is sad but true. So many people judge others by their leathers and tatoos. Booooooo

Keep on ridin' I say.

MOM said...

Because you both ride cycles, I am very conscious of cycles sharing the lanes in which I drive. You seem so small next to me in the mini van. I know as mother I know you are as careful as you can be and and I can see what others do. Thank you for the reminder!!!

Ruth said...

The bikers I have met in the past few years (including you) are not scary in any way, but are interesting and adventurous people.

LauraHinNJ said...

I'd agree with Robin (bumblebee) - I don't know many bikers, but find those I do know to be soft-hearted people hiding behind a hard exterior.

I do tend to complain about the noise, though. I live on the main road to the beach and in the summer huge numbers of bikes go past my house - the noise! I wonder how they stand it?

I've never ridden on a motorcycle, but imagine it must be really nice in the right kind of weather.

Jayne said...

A good lesson about making assumptions about people!

RuthieJ said...

Hi Robin,
We see more & more of them now too and many our age and even older. BTW, we always wear helmets when riding but had them off for photographic purposes on this shot.

Hi Lisa,
It's supposed to be nice later on this week and I might have to decide whether to take my last ride of the season or wash windows....

Oh Mom, you're always a careful driver! I know I've become a more observant driver since taking the motorcycle safety class.

Thank you Ruth, that's nice to hear. I've found that little kids are usually the ones most willing to talk or wave to us--even when we're all dressed up in the black leather.

Hi Laura,
We're about 2 miles away from Interstate 90 (the main highway to Sturgis). During the rally week, we can sometimes hear those loud bikes from all the way down there! I've passed some of those guys before and noticed they have foam earplugs stuck in their ears. That's too loud!

Hi Jayne,
I've found it interesting that sometimes people (usually senior citizens & usually at a restaurant) will initiate conversations when we're in the "biker clothes." Sometimes they will share their own stories about motorcycling and also remind us to wear our helmets! I always enjoy visiting with them--we met a very cool 80 Y/O lady several years ago who was riding a Gold Wing with her 82 Y/O husband as a passenger. I told my husband that's the way I wanted to be when I was 80!

Mary said...

Ruthie, here I am last again.

I've never ridden. I guess because I saw a man fly off his bike and die when I was 8 years old. My 23 year old cousin died in an accident, too. People die in cars, too...

My cop friend (dear, wonderful+ man) at work rides his motorcyle to work when the weather is right. He is always asking me to take a spin with him. And a month ago, I promised him I would - with a helmet, on a Friday (we wear jeans on Fridays). So, look for a photo of me on the back of a bike one day. Biting my fingernails.

Nice post.

RuthieJ said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
RuthieJ said...

All good arguments for not wanting to ride a motorcycle, Mare. Don't feel forced into doing it if you're really not comfortable, because then it won't be any fun at all. But if you do decide to go, I hope you have a fun ride and I'll be looking forward to seeing those pictures.

Trixie said...

I've got to ask, what is it you and the spousal unit are riding?

I used to ride before children, but ride, not drive that was the dh's job. We may go back to it once the kiddos are older.

You look fabulous in your leathers.

RuthieJ said...

Hi Trixie,
We've always had Hondas--reasonably priced, reliable, and we really like the folks at the dealership in Austin, MN. Both bikes are the Honda VTX. Rick's is an 1800R and mine is a 1300R. My first bike was a 750 Shadow ACE, but I couldn't keep up when he switched from an 1100 to this 1800. I've only had my license for 4 years, but after 2 years my confidence level had gotten to the point where I was capable of managing a much larger bike and I really like this one.

I love my leathers....they are my "cloak of coolness" in addition to being warm and extra protection in case I fall.

Lisa at Greenbow said...

Ruthie you must ride. Those windows won't care if they are a little spotted. They will wait for your return for a good washing.

Larry said...

I was at a party years ago where there were a lot of bikers. I felt a bit intimidated at first but came to realize they were all just people with every day jobs like me.I think everyone just rmembers the reputation of some of the bad news biker gangs of the 60's and 70's.-good post!

Cathy said...

I am the driver you want on the road with you. I feel a sort of maternalism when I see bikers. I know how vulnerable they are and that's exactly how I treat them. My husband's colleague lost an eye (tough for anyone, particularly for a radiologist) after he had to throw his bike down in order to miss two idiot pedestrians who walked into an intersection against the light.