Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Musings of a motorcyclist - why I ride?

Commuting north this morning on I-395's segregated HOV lanes with an indicated 80-mph had me passing an unmarked officer with a 4- or 5-mph speed differential. For reasons I'll likely never know, that was the moment I thought of the oft heard phrase used by many motorcyclists:

If I have to explain, you won't understand.

This phrase is most often heard when non-motorcyclists ask motorcyclists why they ride. It strikes me as a cop out response. When I use it I feel inarticulate.

Why can't I explain why I ride? Why won't a non-rider understand?

I've hinted at motivations in earlier posts: Jan 25th, Feb 6th, and 14th.

So, while passing the policeman on the HOV lanes I got to wondering how to answer why I ride. My head started to hurt so I quit thinking about it.

About then I noticed spring is coming. The air was crisp, the sky blue, and even in the midst of way too much traffic I spied a daffodil on the side of the road. Heading north on the George Washington Pkwy I noticed the Potomac with a wisp of fog indicating the presence of a temperature difference between water and air, albeit ever so slight. Continuing I could see buds on some trees promising to hide the expensive homes grossly in view when the trees are winter-bare. It was nice to ride and be given the promise of spring.

Why do I ride?
If I have to explain, you won't understand...

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