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From the Hip
FROM THE HIP
From Minnesota Motorcycle Monthly, #59 July 2003
It's July and that means time for my usual why aren't you riding to work rant. Like my Elvis record doomed to skip for eternity on the refrain of Suspicious Minds, this time of year I am the proverbial one-track mind. July 16th is Ride to Work Day and this is your chance to show "The Man" what you're really all about. Ride to Work day is the creation of Minnesota's very own Andy Goldfine, known motorcycling maven and if MMM ever gives out awards for the most positive people in motorcycling, Andy will be at the top of our list.
On a day to day basis I continue to hear more and more reasons why riders don't use their bikes as daily transportation. The excuses are as varied as the bikes we ride but a common thread runs through them all, we like things easy. At the slightest sign of adversity we as riders pack up and go home. It's too hot or too cold. It might rain. I might mess up by hair. This sort of whining means one thing, we have turned into wimps. At the first sign that all is not perfect our flower print sundresses billow up in our face, we turn tail and run for the security of our shiny metal boxes. What ever happened to riding 100 miles to school up hill both ways through 6-foot snowdrifts. The way our elders speak we have lost any claim to toughness we might have had. As riders we have become the child with the broken glasses just waiting for the bully to take our lunch money.
But it doesn't have to be this way. We can regain our cool but non-threatening toughness and it doesn't involve a tattoo or therapy. All we have to do is walk to our garage and put that key in our bike not our car. It is so simple. Once you start it's hard to stop. What better way to arrive at work ready to take on the day than after a nice ride. Hate sitting in traffic on the way home? Ride the long way and leave the stresses of work where they belong. Think you're the only one around work that rides? Chances are you're wrong. Minnesota has more riders per capita than any other state in the union.
Okay, enough hyperbole and BS, Ride to Work Day is important for many reasons, but in my opinion the greatest of these is that it promotes motorcycling as a positive aspect of society and reminds the public how many riders there are in their community.
But don't take my curmudgeonly word for it, do a little investigating on your own. Visit www.ridetowork.org for all the propaganda that can be stuffed into one site and then decide. What do you look better in, a sundress or a riding jacket?
As usual ride fast, take chances and to it on your ride to work.