Most bikers I've known over the years tend to have a deep mistrust of those around them and it's no small wonder. We've grown used to the constant harassment from those that are paid to protect our rights, from parents who never seem to grasp what it is we see in riding motorcycles, families and co-workers who will tell you of every motorcycle wreck they hear about. Friends that will invite you to something but always remind you to wear something decent and please leave the noisy motorcycle at home, so you tend to blow em off as it's just not worth the games. The list goes on. The one constant theme that always rears its ugly head and pisses me off the most is bikers pitted against other bikers.
Most riders profess to be freedom loving while telling you tales of discrimination they have encountered over the years on the highways of our country. I'm sure anyone that has been riding for any amount of time has stories of being refused service because of their attire, or refused entry to a motel because of the mode of transportation they choose. How many people do you know who have been forced to assume the position when riding in some strange city, or for that matter, even their hometowns just because of what they were riding. It happens all the time and continues to happen to this day. When is the last time you were checked for warrants and you know if you had been driving your cage you would never have even been pulled over. I must admit, at least for me, where I happen to live at the moment these occurrences have lessened to some degree. I think mostly because of the vast influx of new Harley riders. You won't find me complaining on that score.
What you will find me complaining about, not that it will do any good, is the constant animosity I find among bikers against fellow bikers. People we're our own worse enemy. You ride a riceburner? You suck. You ride a dresser? You suck. You ride a chopper? You suck. Left your bike stock? You suck. You belong to a MC? You suck. You don't belong to a MC? You suck. You post on one biker board? You suck. You post on another? You suck. Don't even think to admit your female and ride or you'll cause heart problems. The list goes on. Is it any wonder when you're broke down with a flat or mechanical problems these days that bikers will just pass you on by without a thought? We've brought it on ourselves with our actions and have no one to blame but ourselves. We're so fast to point the finger at society when they wrong us but in reality we're constantly fucking ourselves while those in power look on in glee.
The older I've gotten the less need I've found to have others around me, most of my riding is alone where I don't have to worry about others riding habits, their skills or lack thereof. I could count on one hand the number of people I could honestly say I trusted and have fingers left over. Gone are the days when I'd pack up on a moments notice and hit the highway with virtual strangers.
Something happened that started a few years ago that has forced me to reevaluate these feelings. I moved from California to Texas leaving family behind. In an attempt to stay in touch with daughters and grand kids I bought my first computer because no one can read my handwriting without losing it. Me with a computer? Ha it was an area that I had always figured was for the geeks and nerds that I had known in school. One thing led to another and soon I was chunking down money at my local ISP to get on-line. Messing about one day I went searching for other bikers, believe me there wasn't very many then on the web that were worth a shit. Now you'll find biker sites are a dime a dozen. I stumbled into The Virtual Biker's site shortly after a bulletin board had been put up. Hell I'd never posted anything in my life on the web but I made my first post. There was only a few people hanging out then, most drifted in and never found their way back. Some like myself are still there to this day. Some became good solid friends who I know I could knock on their door in the middle of the night and be made welcome.
I guess like in real life here in the virtual medium troubles started. Coming from those, who for whatever reason, find nothing better to do than attempt to bring down what they don't have or don't understand. Sort of like our forefathers did when they would circle their wagons to protect themselves against attack the VBMO was born out of ashes from flame wars. Within the VBMO you'll find a vast assortment of people, everything from old bean sprout eating bleeding heart liberals to ultra conservative right-wingers and everything in between. The one common thread that holds it together is the love of motorcycles and respect for each other. What started out as fun and games in the virtual medium has become reality on the highways. Born in a virtual medium it now takes a real life gathering to belong. The VBMO may be the first motorcycle organization born on the web but your not playing with a full deck if you think it'll be the last.
Pushing the half century mark I've left behind the bullshit of youth. I may poke you in the ribs for riding rice or an Evo for that matter and tell you that your land barge [dresser] is one ugly piece of shit but only if I know you and consider you a friend. If you're out on the highways of this country or across the ocean riding on two wheels I respect that. If you're out working for the cause of freedom for those that ride I respect that. If your beating on the governments doors for rights that should be a given but aren't for bikers I respect that. If you're within the ranks of your chosen MC I respect that. If you're within the ranks of your chosen motorcycle organization I respect that. The list goes on, there are a lot of people on two wheels out there and if we don't stop beating each other up over our differences we'll destroy ourselves.
There is a fraction in this country and overseas that would like nothing better than to see motorcycles vanish from the highways. If you're one of the many posers who only ride on a bulletin board and thinks talking trash is the way of the world or if you're one of those who rides yet constantly belittles every rider that is not within your small world far as I'm concerned you're just another ass hole who is destroying something I happen to love, chasing wind on two wheels. You're just another of the enemy within and every freedom loving biker sees you as such.
To the millions of fellow wind chasers who believe in freedom, enjoy the ride. Don't let the enemy within destroy what you love. To those with small, closed minds that are still living a piss poor version of a grade B hollywood movie that think slinging garbage is the way of the world..well enjoy yourself, that also is your right, but sooner or later someone who cares always picks up the garbage and puts it where it belongs.
Proud to be a member in good standing with the VBMO. The first international motorcycle organization to be born on the web.
The above is my personal opinion and in no way reflects the views or opinions of fellow members of the VBMO.