Life Choices

Non-SD related ... booze, birds and general "boys showing off" type stuff
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Sarasota_Steve
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Life Choices

Postby Sarasota_Steve » Sat May 27, 2017 8:26 pm

So I started riding motorcycles when I was 12 years old. It was actually a 50cc moped in my case. I have 36 years of experience (I'm 48 for the math challenged). Today, I was lectured, once more, on how dangerous motorcycles are.

I went with my mother in law and my wife, to pick up a mobility scooter for my mother in law. She had her right foot amputated a few years back, wears a prosthesis but does not like to use her cane, wheelchair or her walker so she decided to give a scooter a try.

The sales person was in his early 30's I guess, wearing a leg brace and had some muscular damage to his left arm. I did not ask but for some reason I assumed Afghanistan or Iraq Vet. Once the transaction inside the store was completed, we went outside to load the scooter in my truck where the sales person saw my 'motorcycles are everywhere' bumper sticker and commented he liked it. I thanked him and proceeded to disassemble the scooter to load it in my truck and he cautioned me to be safe and stop riding if I could.

I said that riding is in my veins and I don't think I'll ever stop. He said his injuries were from a bike accident. He proceeded to tell us, that he used to be the Road Captain of a large group of sportbikes and he used to ride all the time, doing stunts in the street, 8 mile wheelies etc. My wife and mother in law assume that's what I do every time I ride my bike.

The sales person, who would not shut up, kept going that his 'crew' used to be 50 riders and 30 of them have passed from bike accidents. It's not us - he said - it's the cagers that don't see us - I thought to myself, -in your case, I'm not sure about that- but did not voice it.

He also said that when he had his accident, his girlfriend was on the back of his bike, and he was doing 80 mph. on a 6 lane road in the middle of the city when an evil, inattentive, bad bad cager cut him off. He said he even gunned it prior to impact but he clipped the front end of the car, flew and landed on the street, his girlfriend flying and landing on the side of the road. Later learned she's ok, not with him. Happily married with kids.

Again, I hate hearing stories like that. I'm aware of how dangerous is the sport I choose to do. I'm cautious and wear the right gear 99% of the time. I must confess I sometimes ride my 250cc scooter without a helmet, jacket or gloves.

My wife used to tell me she loved me right before I left for a Sunday ride. That simple "I love you" used to bounce in my head all ride long and bother me because she thought I'd have an accident and that was the last thing she said. But instead of considering myself lucky I guess, because someone loves me, I used to think - I'm gonna have an accident today - over and over. I asked her to stop and nowadays I tell her - See you later, around 3 or 4 I guess -
My mother in law goes to an amputee support group monthly meeting and people talk about the difficulties they share and ways to overcome them. My wife attends the meeting instead of waiting in the car. Every time, they love to point out if there is a new person, and if it's a younger person, it was due to a motorcycle accident. Ok, Ok, I get it's its dangerous. I take every precaution possible but I'm also aware and ok with the fact that one day I may not come back from a ride. And that's ok with me.

I've been riding with mostly the same guys since 1998. That was my Bandit 1200 years, later SV 650, later SD and now SDR. Over the years, we've had some guys loose their lives, but NONE, ZERO to motorcycle accidents.

Again, the mobility scooter guy and his crew used to ride like assholes. Complete and utterly assholes. It's a shame that some of them lost their lives, but that is not how I ride and how I like motorcycles and motorcyclists to be represented. I also do not condone the Harley lifestyle of going bar-hopping while wearing a bandana an a tank top. But that's their life and I'm not going to preach to them. Their life, their decisions.
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Re: Life Choices

Postby AGRO! » Sun May 28, 2017 1:11 am

Steve make sure you always wear your helmet! 9 times out of 10 your going to bang your head in a fall.
Now that poppy AGRO! Has scolded young Steve :lol:
I started riding at the ripe old age of 15 in 1971 and have had some big crashes and walked away to tell the story yes some riders have one crash and die some have more and live but that's just how it goes.
Apart from road rash the worst injury I've had was being knocked out one time coming off at 90mph.
I mainly ride by myself as I think group riding is we're most accidents tend to happen riders riding past their abilities trying to keep up with the other guys.
Where I live it's like motorcycle heaven and yes there's a lot of crashes and deaths it was only about 4 weeks ago that a x student from the school I work at was killed on a group ride, He went wide on a bend maybe it was his first ever mistake but sometimes that's all it takes.
Last weekend I'm out riding having fun riding the twisties come up behind a 4 wheel drive thinking about overtaking but something is telling me just to sit behind this dude we come around a right hander and here is this clown doing a U turn double yellow lines lucky we were going slow but I'm thinking holy crap if I over took this dude well you can imagine. I gets home and I'm thinking maybe it's time to give up bikes but I can't it's just one of those things.
So to finish off when you ride make sure you wear your gear say a prayer and live the dream.

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Re: Life Choices

Postby NolaNomad » Sun May 28, 2017 2:29 am

Yeah man, risk & reward…. I'm going through that conundrum myself.
Building the SD back to life I remember all the good times traveling, lacuna seca, top speed run at Bonneville, touring Death Valley, commuting on the daily etc.
it's the best possible way to explore your environment and your self, right?!

Then some guy ran me down and took my leg off at the knee… almost.
I escaped amputation cause I didn't break any bones(???)

But now I'm saddle shy. It's not the Duke it's just the risk.
I love that machine but as safely as I ride, neophytes driving the Bay Area, self entitled behind the wheel of a loaded weapon, will kill you.

fooking paradox man...
"satisfaction is the death of desire"

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Re: Life Choices

Postby AGRO! » Sun May 28, 2017 4:52 am

NolaNomad wrote:Yeah man, risk & reward…. I'm going through that conundrum myself.
Building the SD back to life I remember all the good times traveling, lacuna seca, top speed run at Bonneville, touring Death Valley, commuting on the daily etc.
it's the best possible way to explore your environment and your self, right?!

Then some guy ran me down and took my leg off at the knee… almost.
I escaped amputation cause I didn't break any bones(???)

But now I'm saddle shy. It's not the Duke it's just the risk.
I love that machine but as safely as I ride, neophytes driving the Bay Area, self entitled behind the wheel of a loaded weapon, will kill you.

fooking paradox man...

That really sucks mate!
I suppose once we get injured bad we start thinking differently.
When I'm out riding sometimes I start thinking about drivers high on drugs or booze and on there mobile phones. I think penalties for this crap need to be jail time not a slap on the wrist.
There was a rider killed not far from where I live in January this year the woman driver was high on drugs and decided to run the rider over because she thought he was evil.
She didn't even know the rider he was just riding along minding his own business and she decided to run him down and dragged his body 800 meters this is crazy crap.

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Re: Life Choices

Postby Willh » Sun May 28, 2017 12:04 pm

This is why I don't ride for daily transportation anymore. Well, that and a bit of lack of self control that seems to be Superduke induced :twisted: I now only ride a few times a year with a close longtime riding friend on some gorgeous backroads,( that claim a motorcyclist or two from year to year), away from traffic or solo adventure style even farther from traffic. If there was a track within a reasonable distance to me I'd probably just do that.
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Hotbrakes
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Re: Life Choices

Postby Hotbrakes » Sun May 28, 2017 1:35 pm

Last July my wife and I had twins. We were avid riders, conquering race tracks and starting to work on continents, and finally obtained our dream bikes, a pair of SMTs. There isn't much we haven't done on two wheels. But now she's been stuck with the babies at home and hasn't ridden since shortly before their birth. I continued to commute into the fall until the daylight became shorter and the risk of deer increased.

I haven't ridden since October save for a trackday a couple weeks ago. The thought of leaving my kids behind, losing my job due to permanent disability, or just a simple injury requiring my wife to take care of all of us completely saps any desire I have to ride. Plus there is zero time to do anything fun for myself, let alone basic maintenance on our grounded fleet.

As a paramedic I am all too aware of the deranged people lurking everywhere. All it takes is one of them to get behind the wheel and I could become their unintended target. I am good at stacking the deck in my favor however, and avoid areas where dangerous drivers are the norm. But what if I'm not as good as I thought? What if I'm selfishly trying to just enjoy myself and ride my favorite mountain road as fast as I can? I mean, we just moved to the mountains. Our old house was two hours away from them, now they are literally in my backyard. But I can't...

In some ways I feel lucky to have done the things I've done for so long and survived. I feel like it is naive to think that this is something I've always done, I love it, and I'm almost too good to fail so therefor I should keep doing it. This is my internal battle, I don't really talk to my wife about it, she sometimes brings up wanting to ride, but those instances have become fewer and farther between. I survive by staying busy working, working at home, and playing with babies. Even if I did want to ride, there simply isn't time. Riding is something we used to do.
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Re: Life Choices

Postby Joe Biker » Sun May 28, 2017 4:22 pm

People thought told me not to ride first when i became a single parent ( Wrong )
Then after my mc accident left me with 2 plates n 11 screws in my right knee (Wrong Again )
Opinions are like azzholes everyone has one !!!!!
Its my life and I will enjoy every pleasure that I please.
People can stick their opinions where the sun dont shine !!!! :twisted:

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Re: Life Choices

Postby Mr_Trecolareco » Mon May 29, 2017 10:16 am

Well, people die everyday with many kinds of reasons. Motorcycle accident can be one offcourse.

I've been a daily driver and now just a sunny weekends rider.

Daily driving the the cagers is indeed the problem ( I'm a weekly cager note! ) because all of the distrations. They make us drive slower and slower, radar and ticket police everywhere so you do not focus.

You always have to expect the unexpected and guess before whe the move will be, like a chess game.

Off course the 80mph, 50 bikes group and 8mile wheelie crowd can't complain about bad luck :roll:

But Steve, please ALWAYS WEAR THE HELMET, even in the scooter. You can't be that hard headed :lol:
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Re: Life Choices

Postby speedfiend41 » Mon May 29, 2017 1:10 pm

I will always ride. 50 years old, started when I was 15. Many crashes, broken bones, close calls. Three kids. Call me selfish, I don't care. Riding is my life.
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Re: Life Choices

Postby RichUK » Mon May 29, 2017 4:04 pm

At 16 I had a 50cc (TY50), and at 17 an MTX 125, then I moved onto cars.

At around 22 I started hanging with my old bike friends again which lead to me passing my test and buying a ZX4 import (400 version of a ZX10). TBH I was pretty clueless and was never very confident on a sport bike. After about a year I decided it wasn't worth the risk of injury so sold my bike and bought a fast car instead.
Many years later I bought a trail bike (KLX300 then DRZ400E) and was happy doing that for 10 years or so.

I think recently I had been getting an itch to have a road bike again then a house move a couple of years ago gave me a garage and so the opportunity to have a road bike, so I did.
The difference is I'm now in my mid 40's and can recognise high risk situations, and how to avoid them. I'm now a better rider and can control the bike much better than I did in my early 20's.
I don't ride often, I don't commute, if I'm tired I won't ride (where avoidable).
Just this weekend I backed out of an organised ride I was looking forward too as I had a bad night's sleep which left me feeling pretty rough.

I love riding but it's not everything.
Try to make every ride great so you're maximising your enjoyment with minimal exposure risk.

Things that increase your risk,
Riding often &/or Commuting, you need to ride often enough to keep sharp but at a certain point the increased exposure out ways the experience gained.
Riding tired or bored (kind of applies to commuting)
Riding at night or in bad weather
Riding under the influence
Riding in cities or just in areas with heavy traffic

If you're a pleasure rider you can mostly avoid all the risks above, that's how I justify it to myself. 8)
Last edited by RichUK on Tue May 30, 2017 10:23 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Life Choices

Postby No. 47 » Mon May 29, 2017 5:48 pm

RichUK wrote:Things that increase your risk,

Riding often &/or Commuting, you need to ride often enough to keep sharp but at a certain point the increased exposure out ways the experience gained.
Riding tired or bored (kind of applies to commuting)
Riding at night or in bad weather
Riding under the influence
Riding in cities or just in areas with heavy traffic


Hmm, 4.5/5 for over 40 years...........
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Re: Life Choices

Postby Willh » Mon May 29, 2017 9:09 pm

No. 47 wrote:
RichUK wrote:Things that increase your risk,

Riding often &/or Commuting, you need to ride often enough to keep sharp but at a certain point the increased exposure out ways the experience gained.
Riding tired or bored (kind of applies to commuting)
Riding at night or in bad weather
Riding under the influence
Riding in cities or just in areas with heavy traffic


Hmm, 4.5/5 for over 40 years...........

Which one is the .5 :lol:
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Re: Life Choices

Postby RichUK » Tue May 30, 2017 6:02 am

No. 47 wrote:Hmm, 4.5/5 for over 40 years...........


Which goes to show that even at the higher end of the risk spectrum, you can still make it through un-touched, stay lucky! :wink:

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Re: Life Choices

Postby Mr_Trecolareco » Tue May 30, 2017 8:34 am

I've always been the one in the group that took less chances in the 50cc bike time,

then we grow up to take the licence and got proper bikes and I bought a XJ600N and my friends wento to cbr900 and r1 :roll:

Shortly after I started commuting in the VFR750 and they all got scared of all the stupid things those bikes let them do and decided they were not mature enough to ride and went to cars

Only one of them came back after the wife/kids lifes and is endeed much wiser and eager to ride.

Not everyone should have a bike, everyone should know the feeling they bring us and decide if they should try having a bike :lol:
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Re: Life Choices

Postby NolaNomad » Sun Jun 04, 2017 4:26 am

AGRO! wrote:
NolaNomad wrote:Yeah man, risk & reward…. I'm going through that conundrum myself.
Building the SD back to life I remember all the good times traveling, lacuna seca, top speed run at Bonneville, touring Death Valley, commuting on the daily etc.
it's the best possible way to explore your environment and your self, right?!

Then some guy ran me down and took my leg off at the knee… almost.
I escaped amputation cause I didn't break any bones(???)

But now I'm saddle shy. It's not the Duke it's just the risk.
I love that machine but as safely as I ride, neophytes driving the Bay Area, self entitled behind the wheel of a loaded weapon, will kill you.

fooking paradox man...

That really sucks mate!
I suppose once we get injured bad we start thinking differently.
When I'm out riding sometimes I start thinking about drivers high on drugs or booze and on there mobile phones. I think penalties for this crap need to be jail time not a slap on the wrist.
There was a rider killed not far from where I live in January this year the woman driver was high on drugs and decided to run the rider over because she thought he was evil.
She didn't even know the rider he was just riding along minding his own business and she decided to run him down and dragged his body 800 meters this is crazy crap.




Garo, that story send shivers down my spine.
Or should I say my leg?!

What was the outcome of the murderer person who ran the biker over?

I don't really have an answer to all this but to say.
At lest here, there needs to be intensified motorcycle/bike awareness taught and trained at the DMV as you get a class 1

I look at it this way; if airplane pilots must renew the training every year or so then drivers should retake the tests say every 3 years.
More deaths on the road but also more exposure
Comments about American infrastructure and beuracracy aside, it's a thought to help save lives for fook sake.

I'm constantly amazed at how many Californians don't know lane sharing/splitting IS ACTUALLY LEGAL.
The other point of law says obstruction is ILLEGAL.

You must move your cage out the way. We don't have to like it but that's what the AMA and locals have been fighting for.

On a happier note; I got the SD to turn over today! She's in fine running order.
Now only have to go to the DMV to re register the thing, oh the pain!!!!
"satisfaction is the death of desire"

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Re: Life Choices

Postby AGRO! » Mon Jun 05, 2017 6:56 am

I didn't hear what the outcome was but he was dragged 200 metres not 800 oops I don't know where I got that number from but sorry he was 61.
The cops were asking the public for any dash cam footage.
As for training my view is that all drivers should be forced to ride a motorcycle or scooter to make them aware of what their doing.
One thing I've noticed is that drivers who have never ridden or don't have any family members that ride just don't look or give way to motorcycles.
I can't believe how many times I've been on a roundabout and drivers just pull out on ya! I even had one young chick look at me and say sorry as she's pulling out it pisses me off.
I ride a scooter to work every day rain hail or shine and pretty much ride my bike every weekend I did see a orange 1290 yesterday up at Tomewin, WHO WAS IT ?
Glad you got your bike sorted try to be confident when you ride and watch out for retards..

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Re: Life Choices

Postby DougFir » Tue Jun 06, 2017 3:44 am

Yep, better quit riding them dam motor bikes and pull up a bar stool. :roll: :roll: :roll: :roll:


See how your ladies like that.
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Re: Life Choices

Postby jmann » Thu Jun 08, 2017 3:06 am

Comrades: I've been riding for a long time (50 years) and had surprisingly few accidents. I put this down to four factors:
(a) A pathological desire to stay alive. Sometimes even when I'm on track I think to myself things like "What would happen if the engine seized Etc.". As a consequence I'm not a very good rider/racer. On the road I'm up for fun but not for glory.
(b) Road-craft. I think that if one is lucky enough to survive the first few years one starts to recognise the patterns of accidents slightly before they happen. If one watches those horrendous Russian dash-cam videos of bike accidents one can see all of the common accidents. It's amazing because one can see stuff unfolding even as it happens - that's experience and it helps a lot.
(c) Good luck. No matter how much experience one has there is always the very real possibility that one will just be out of luck. This kills even the most experienced of riders because it was the unexpected.
(d) Preparation. Having a bike that is in good condition (brakes and tyres Etc) is fundamental. One must however always assume that "something could happen" and the right clothing and helmet is a must. It may save your life when something happens. It might not but it's worth a try.

Interestingly my worst accident occurred a couple of years ago on my bicycle. It was a bit like Nicky Haden's insofar as it was an unexpected head-on. When I now look at the bruises and abrasions on my forehead left by my styrofoam helmet I think "thank god I had it on". I also think that it illustrates the point about right gear and helmet.

Ultimately one has to do what one enjoys but really recognising the risks and the mitigating factors goes a long way 8)

Ride on dear friends (comrades).

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Re: Life Choices

Postby orangecrush » Thu Jun 08, 2017 7:11 pm

Hooligans these days are much worse than the hooligans of years back. Too many foolishly lose their lives for dumb reasons. Yes, the risk for vehicle to motorcycle collisions is still there. And those collisions are always much worse for the motorcyclists that the other vehicle operator. But, non-sense that places others at risk is the one that I will, and have, vocalized to the guilty parties. I'll call them out in front of their buddies. (I was the cause of a private facebook group being created. They even made stickers. LOL. They know I love them, but I call it as I see it. Even offered me a sticker...pass. lol).

So Steve, for that young man that shared his story with your favorite ladies, sorry that he paid a price that was higher than he wanted to spend. Fortunately, he's still here to tell that story. If you see him again, encourage him to tell the "new kids on the block" to tone it down. Find a parking lot and stunt your heart out. Or a track, and run it wide open. But lets share the road wisely with those 3+ ton behemoths that will crush and mangle you until you're not recognizable to family and friends.

PS, I always say I Love You before walking out the door, or hanging up the phone. Tomorrow is not promised. If I don't get to speak to my loved ones again this side of eternity, I want to be sure they know I love them, and they me. Especially if we in arguing at the time.

T I R E
T I R E
T I R E

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Re: Life Choices

Postby AGRO! » Fri Jun 09, 2017 10:36 pm

orangecrush wrote:
PS, I always say I Love You before walking out the door, or hanging up the phone. Tomorrow is not promised. If I don't get to speak to my loved ones again this side of eternity, I want to be sure they know I love them, and they me. Especially if we in arguing at the time.

T I R E
T I R E
T I R E

Wise words my friend..

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Re: Life Choices

Postby RichUK » Sat Jun 10, 2017 8:57 am

I'd just like to share 2 examples of crashes, they are the ones I most fear and try to look out for.

1st one the biker is not to blame but I think the winter conditions contributed - low sun in van drivers eyes.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wDBtkqZvx2k

Jump to 2:14 for the footage.

and this one, sadly fatal but I think we've all been there, riding too fast and then surprised that other motorists pull out on us.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ukA57DwcOJw

I think he was doing 97mph, the car driver would have expected that any oncoming vehicle would be travelling at 50-60mph, that is unless the driver was also a biker.
I generally expect all bikes to be speeding when I'm driving.

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Re: Life Choices

Postby DaveNZ » Sun Jun 11, 2017 6:39 am

Ive had my fair share of crashes, they usually slow me down for awhile, until the confidence returns, then I'm back at it, canning the bike as often as i can. cruising or doing the speed limit just doesn't feel right yet, may be when I'm 65, may be then ill slow down a smiggen. :D
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Re: Life Choices

Postby AGRO! » Mon Jun 12, 2017 1:05 am

Hey Rich that first video is like what was the driver doing not to see the bike? Plus he probably came up with some story like I didn't see the bike officer :roll:
The second vid I've seen before and that driver said that they didn't see the bike but I'm calling that BS as they are definitely cutting the entry to the street to beat the bike.
I think we need a system put in place that if a driver causes a accident with a motorcycle that it could involve a
Jail sentence this would make them look at least..

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Re: Life Choices

Postby AGRO! » Mon Jun 12, 2017 1:09 am


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Re: Life Choices

Postby RichUK » Mon Jun 12, 2017 8:14 am

Yeh, seen the IOM one before too... so unfair to be taken out by someone else's mistake, even a fellow bikers mistake.

The one with the van driver, I dunno. He could have been messing with his phone, or adjusting his radio. I think the sun was in his eyes so he just didn't see the bike.

Question is what should we do to avoid these situations.
Should we pulse the flash button to alert drivers to our presence as we approach?
Problem is, here in the UK, flashing another motorists does actually mean "I am here" but it is generally taken to mean that you are letting them go first... :shock:

Maybe if you flash a regular pattern it would help as that is what the police do. I think I could rig up a flasher circuit that will flash both the hi & low beam together, or alternately... I wonder if that would help, or just get you in trouble for impersonating the coppers.. :mrgreen:
Last edited by RichUK on Mon Jun 12, 2017 12:37 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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