During my preadolescent and early teen years I always wanted two particular things my dad would not let me have.
First, I wanted a diet bike and second, a dune buggy. We lived near the beach in Mobile, Alabama for seven years, so as any level-headed person can clearly see my deductive reasoning made perfect sense. The fresh air, the money I would save my family by riding either to school, and so forth. After all, I was extremely careful in everything I did so as not to get hurt. Not counting the torn muscle in my back, my broken foot, and the surgery on my right knuckle, I was careful all the time. Yep, I was a model of safety, that’s what I was alright. Yeah, my parents didn’t buy it either. I was as clumsy and accident prone as a portly kid could be. Every once in a while I would still try and when we would go to the Bel-Air Mall I would show dad the latest bike and ask, “…how much does it cost…?” Dad would allow me to pitch my spiel most of the time but there was this one particular time when he was especially firm when he answered, “Steve, it doesn’t matter what it cost, it could be free and you still could not have one. I said “NO” and that’s all there is to it!” Game over.
When I was fifty-two I finally bought my first bike and my mother gave me the same concerned look she did when I was still in her care. My son will soon be thirty and I kind of/sort of feel the same way about him. It is hard to ride to his place and scold him for the reasons he should not own one, pointless don’t you think? At fifty-seven I bought my second bike and I still love the freedom of riding. Perhaps Jeremy and I will take a trip some day, far in the future when he is old enough to buy one; when he is fifty-two or older.
Truly, I do have concerns not only for Pamela, me, and our son but for all riders. Seasoned riders and casual ones like me often remind the ones riding with us, “Always look out for the other vehicles on the road because they may not see you.” There is most definitely a greater risk of injury in a bike wreck than a car wreck. So, if we know the risk we must take particular cautions to dress properly, wear our helmets, watch our speed, and stay focused on the hazards of the road. Know the rules, follow them and cut down the risk. Simple, is it not? However the guys in the cars and trucks can walk away from motorcycle wrecks, riders do not. The …how much does it cost… effect may be different for one than the other.