So having a motorcycle, or learning to ride one - it must be like being having a baby. Ipso facto - someone finds out that you are doing either, and they have an appropriate horror story to match. I had a friend, who, when she was pregnant, had a prescription pad from her doctor that read "My doctor says I'm not allowed to talk to you," for people who felt that it was imperative that they share their tales of terror. Lots of folks around my office were super excited when I was learning how to ride a motorcycle. Then I bought a motorcycle. Now they've got different songs to sing.
Naysayers all around! Sheesh! Molly said, and I agreed, I should start giving them back a taste of their own medicine. "Sure, I'm learning to ride my motorcycle. It's dangerous? Because your SHOES are untied! Do you have any idea how dangerours that is? I knew a whole family once killed by untied shoelaces. They were running down the stairs, tripped! And a madman hacked them to pieces."
My first ride out was a little more than I was ready for. I was under watchful eye, but there's training, and then there's reality, and sometimes what you know from the book is a little difficult to put into practice in real life. For example, you must ignore your human instinct, and do not LOOK at something that you do not want to HIT. Your bike will follow your nose - yeah, it always knows. However, when you're turning on a 90 degree corner, and there's a car waiting to go straight, and the driver is staring you down and you catch his eye, it's really, really difficult to look away... and as you get closer and closer and closer, the terrified and bewildered look on his pate gets increasingly more animated... and you tell yourself to stop staring as your bike rolls forward to what seems inevitable... OH and when you have that near miss, make sure you do it in front of a crowded biker bar!
First thing the guys at the office asked: "Do you have a full face helmet? 'Cause that hides shame really well."
Molly's commentary: "Nothing hides terror like a visor. Maybe put on a full face of smiling clown makeup."
But much to my delight, I'm almost past the complete and total humiliation stage. It gets easier and more comfortable every time I get on the bike, and on our last outing, FINALLY I was grinning instead of cursing and getting thumbs-ups instead of raised eyebrows. Although, those raised eyebrows are hard to make out under all that clown makeup.