Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Why I Didn't Ride To Work Today

So today was Ride to Work day. If you need a reason to get the bike out, it's as good as any.

Although I ride to work as often as I can, I have yet to actually ride to work on "Ride to Work" day.

Lady Luck has been getting after me to go out riding because, frankly, I get grumpy when I've been away from the bike for too long.

I really meant to ride to work today. But then I woke up late, and Lady Luck tempted me with donuts from Rainbow Donuts (the best donut shop we've found in Phoenix). And then blah, blah, blah, I've become everything I hate.

Well, ok, that's not true at all. I'm not riding because I'm carpooling, which is as noble as riding to work, if less thrilling. By carpooling with Lady Luck, we both get to enjoy the carpool lane, as opposed to just me.

On the other hand, I get ornery when I've been away from the bike for too long. And I've been away from the bike for too long. Lady Luck is getting annoyed with me, and mentioned she misses the way I'd come home from work smiling when I rode every day.

To make an awful metaphor, my general mood is like a big rubber ball, and I'm playing an endless game of "keep the ball in the air." I can keep it up so long as I'm paying attention and moving fast, but distractions abound, and before I know it I've dropped the ball and it's rolling away. Now, when I have a positive experience it's like catching the ball and giving it a good hard throw straight up.

Riding is like drop-kicking that sumbitch in low gravity - it takes a long, long time for the ball to come back down.

Anyway, maybe I'll ride to work on the designated day next year.


Noam Sayin' said...

I think I'm coming to understand...

Hi. My name's Noam. I've been riding for three months.

"Hi, Noam!"

Can we call it, 'motorcrackle?' In the three months I've been riding, I've put on 1200 miles on my little 150cc scooter. I can't stay off it.

It's 11:00 here in Minneapolis right now, and the only thing that's keeping me from getting back on it is that I've had a couple cocktails. I feel I'm beginning to understand. More so, I'm starting to feel a part of the motorin' 'brotherhood'.

Let me explain, and query the riding established about what's going on.

In my normal life, I drive a big, black, snarling Jeep Wrangler. It's common for us Jeepers to toss each other a wave - something only we understand. I didn't expect this kind of thing from anyone other than another scooter driver, which I receive in multitudes. Sometimes I think we're disturbing the peace with our wanky little horns at each other.

When first riding, I wondered if motorcycle riders offer the same hat tip. At that instant, as I approached a large Harley roaring at me - such that a Harley can roar on the River Road on the south end of St. Paul - the rider's left hand went down and out, and I swore the crusty, old bastard was looking me right in the eye. It was so unexpected, all I could do was raise my head quickly (in Minnesota, we call it the 'up-nod), and ride away in wonder whether he was acknowledging a fellow rider, signaling that I shouldn't pass too close to an American icon.

Was he... waving?

Noam Sayin' said...


Since that moment, I've noticed quite a few waves and up-nods from non-scooter riders. I have to profess, they mostly come from Harley riders. I don't mean to impugn other bikers. Honestly, if you're riding a Triumph Street Triple, would you really waste your time on Minnehaha Creek Parkway?

Do bikers honor the scooter drivers as accepted guests?

Mr. Motorcycle said...

I do, all the time. If you are sportin two wheels, expect a wave. I don't give a crap what you ride.

I feel ya brother! Just like fishing opener. Ive never done it, but I fish all the time.

Ride to work day doesn't mean much around here. I've never seen more or less bikes on the road because of it.

Lucky said...

noam - well, I've found that the guys who ride because they love riding, wave at anything on two wheels.

The guys who ride because it makes them look like a badass, don't.

Down here, scooters usually have to wave first, because they so rarely wave back. I don't know what the deal is, but Arizona scooter kids just don't wave.

Mr. Moto - I have yet to see "more" bikers out on RTW day as well. I think here in Arizona, either you ride to work, or you don't.

David said...

Call me crazy, call me unconventional, heck, call me Ishmael, but wouldn't it be possible to carpool to work on the bike? Use the carpool lane, get a hug from your honey, save fuel, etc. And you'd keep from being grouchy... ;)

Just sayin'
Dave T.

Lucky said...

David - It's a nice thought, but the passenger accommodations on the Triumph are minimal, to put it kindly. Maybe if I had a bigger bike.

And the main reason I started carpooling is to increase the time between scheduled maintenances on the Triumph. ;)

Also, Lady Luck won't go out in the heat.