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Why a motorcycle is better than a...

I’m sure you have all heard the jokes about why a motorcycle is better than a man/woman/husband/wife:
  • You can keep photos of your old motorcycles
  • If baldness occurs, you can just replace the tires
  • Motorcycles don't care about how many other motorcycles you have ridden
  • Your parents won't keep in touch with your old motorcycle after you dump it
  • Motorcycles always feel like going for a ride when you do
  • Your motorcycle never wants a night out alone with the other motorcycles
  • Your motorcycle would rather go for a ride than watch sports
  • When riding, you and your motorcycle both arrive at the same time
  • …and the list goes on
Aside from all the jokes, there are ways that your motorcycle is an honest and straight-forward partner – and some of these have very serious implications:
your good intentions do not matter. After a ‘screw up,’ there is no discussion about what you meant to do. The only thing that matters is what you actually did do. For example:
  • I intended to use the front brake, but…
  • I meant to wear my riding gear, but…
  • I meant to stay on the road in the curve, but…
  • Your knowledge does not matter. What?? Did he just say ‘Your knowledge does not matter?’ Yes, but let me clarify – if your knowledge leads you to successful action, then it matters, but it only matters as far as your action matters. If you ‘know’ something, but take action or make a decision against that knowledge, then that knowledge isn’t helping you. Here are some examples:
  • I knew I entered that curve too fast, but…
  • I knew I shouldn't have ridden home after having a few drinks, but…
  • I knew that riding the clutch would have helped me with low speed control, but…
  • I knew that I should have looked through the turn and not at the guardrail, but…
  • I knew that wearing a jacket, pants, and a helmet would have reduced my road-rash and head injury, but…
So remember – it is true that your motorcycle doesn’t care if you get bald and fat, and it doesn’t care if you don’t call for a few months over the winter. When you are riding, the only thing your motorcycle cares about is what you actually do. Gaining knowledge is great, but make sure that you spend some time practicing the ‘doing’ and not just the ‘knowing.’
 
Happy Holidays – enjoy the good riding days we have over the winter and ride safe!
-Ax/Fall 12

Stacey "Ax" Axmaker is the program director for the Idaho Star Motorcycle Training Program
 


 

Ax's Christmas Gift Ideas for the
Rider in Your Life
Not sure what to get the rider in your life this Christmas? Here are a few ideas in a variety of price ranges (hint: print this column and leave at the kitchen counter by accident, don’t forget to use red ink to circle some of your favorite items):

Lower price range

  • Good quality tire gauge
  • Bike cleaner spray/polish
  • Disc lock
  • A decal that says "Crashing Sucks” or "I got a motorcycle for my husband…it was a good trade”
  • A gift certificate for an Idaho STAR Experienced Course ($55)
Middle price range
  • Riding jacket
  • Riding pants
  • Heated jacket or vest
  • A new helmet
  • A gift certificate for an Idaho STAR Basic I or Basic II Course ($105)
Higher price range
  • A new motorcycle
  • Motorcycle tour of Europe
  • A set of racing leathers
  • A gift certificate for an Idaho STAR Precision Riding Clinic ($350)

     

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