Motorbikes, Level of Cool, And Zen

Today was wet, cold, and generally miserable.

I still rode in. I was, for the first time in recent memory, the only bike on the road. I have rain gear, I have good safety equipment, and I rode more cautiously than my usual.

Still, I arrived at work cold, wet and a little wrung out.

What I didn’t bring to work was a great, big, ugly wad of angry.

That, my friends, is the single biggest difference for me between riding and driving. In a car, if someone cuts me off or endangers my life, I have to stew on it through traffic, quite possibly close to the driver and vehicle that endangered me. Stew and brood and howl, if angered enough.

There’s no getting away from it.

While riding, I might howl, once, then I am past and watching out for the next mouth-breathing moron’s attempt to kill us both. It is far better for mood and mind to be able to get it out and give it away, focus on the next thing.

I think that’s one of the reasons riding is associated with ‘cool’; one cannot hold onto shit that really only hurts the bearer. Instead you have to move to the next thing and do it as best you can. Well, you could, but then you are likely to get hit by the next bad thing while you’re head down and polishing your hurt feelings.

I hope I can continue riding and keeping whatever measure I have of cool. Not anywhere near Steve McQueen’s level of cool, mind you. But as close as a mere mortal can come:

And Ye Should Ride In His Name