I love motorcycles. I used to have this boyfriend and we would fantasize about how someday we would both buy a Harley Davidson and cruise around the Country. I don’t think that this scenario will ever play out in my deck of cards, but every time I see Roadsters I wonder what it would be like to be “free”.
A few years back (try 10 – WOW time flies) a bunch of friends and I went to The Rose Parade. If you have never experienced sleeping on the street with thousands of people in Pasadena, CA, you haven’t lived. We had a blast! The streets were one HUGE party.
All kinds of vehicles would cruise up and down the street, and all kinds of people would run back and forth to greet them. Different objects (ie., candy, confetti, marshmellows, items of clothing, drinks) would be thrown between the cruisers and the spectators. I say cars, but I mean, cars, bikes, busses, scooters, motorcycles…anything that you can imagine with wheels.
Well, of course I was so envious of those motorcycles. Every time they drove by, which was countless, I knew that their goal was just to taunt me. At one point, a big group of cyclers parked close by to take a short break. I ran over and asked this group of upper middle age men if one would let me tag along on their next cruise. They were more than compliant. The problem was which one was going to be the lucky one to take me. I was a cute 21 yr old lively girl. Who wouldn’t want me on the back of their motorcycle?
My friends thought that I was crazy for jumping on a bike with a complete stranger. I have to admit that at one point during the ride with Fast Eddie I had a panic stricken feeling that he could take me to some back alley and I would be completely helpless. Jumping on a motorcycle with a complete stranger was completely irresponsible, especially since we were some of the only people not drinking at the party, but I wanted to prove that Mormons could have fun too, and prove it I did.
Well, Fast Eddie, (shown above) was the winner among his friends. He was so COOL! We rode up and down the strip for as long as I wanted. All the people that I had come to the parade with and all of my new friends that I had made throughout the night would shout my name as we cruised by. What a blast. I was on HOG heaven.
Rewind to ten years previous to 1994. I was about 11. My dad had inherited some old dirtbikes from a Great Uncle who had passed. One Saturday, he was in the front yard tinkering with them. Throughout the day, my dad and my brothers would each take a turn going through the front yard and up and down the street.
I approached my dad and asked him if I could have a turn. He said, “Sure” and gave me all of the pointers about the clutch and the brakes, how to stop, accelerate, and steer. I was ready. My dad seemed a little reserved, and kept asking me if I knew how everything worked. I was overly confident (imagine that). I waved my dad off and told him I would be fine.
I accelerated as hard as I could and I choked trying to remember where the brakes were located. I took off so fast that I felt like steering was an impossibility or if I tried to take the sharp turn toward the street I would surely dismount. I hung on for dear life going a good thirty miles an hour or so. I crashed head-on into our front door. The whole door frame came tumbling down, leaving me sitting on the bike bewildered. The bike had finally stopped; I was staring at my mom just two feet in front of me. She was standing in our hallway with a horrified look on her face screaming at the top of her lungs.
I know, after hearing this story, you would wonder why I still have a thing for motorcycles. I guess I am a gluten for punishment. I also give Kudos to my mom and dad. They handled the situation perfectly. They laughed at me for hours on end. All the neighbors came over to get a good laugh too. Back then, all I could think about was how bad I hurt between my legs, but looking back now, I am glad that I could promote good laughter….it is quite funny!