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The Edge - Hunter S. Thompson

It Was Ride To Work Day (Does Anybody Care?)

Fuzzygalore posted a little somethin’ somethin’ about Ride To Work day a while ago. Our beloved Fuzz rode to work. She didn’t see any more motorcycles than she typically would see most days. (Read the story in Fuzzy’s own words, here)

Fuzzy’s post beckoned the question, do motorcycle awareness days really work, what do you think?

Good question.

In large part I see Fuzzy’s point. Without banners or signage, do people really understand the cause? Do they even know that there is a cause?

My number one method of avoiding disappointment in life is assuming that people are idiots, and planning and acting accordingly. If I had to guess I would say that most people (cagers and pedestrians) have no idea what they’re seeing when a motorcycle awareness ride rolls past them.

There’s a hole world of ignorance out there, and I’m a part of it. For my entire life I’ve lived within ear shot of an annual air show and I don’t even look up in the sky when I hear the planes pass. I couldn’t be bothered, so I can’t blame the general population if they can’t be bothered to ask themselves “I wonder why all of those motorcyclists are all riding together.”

The Edge - Hunter S. Thompson

But maybe these events and motorcycle rallies aren’t about the general population (the cagers). Maybe they aren’t even about other motorcyclists. Maybe participating in these motorcycle events and rallies is more about self-awareness than they are about spreading awareness. Maybe these events are really about reaffirming your personal commitment to a something. Maybe they’re about keeping a memory alive. Maybe they’re about a gesture to an old friend, one that you won’t see again until you’ve crossed the edge.

I mean, we’re motorcyclists, since when do we care what other people think, right? So is it that hard to believe that when we set out on motorcycle rallies that we’re really just out to validate our own principles?

Fuzzy, in her own words:

“I don’t know if these types of events do any good. People can barely concentrate on driving let alone wonder why they may see more motorcyclists than usual. Not to mention I highly doubt they go home and Google “why were there so many motorcycles on the road today.”

But on the flip side? It’s riding. And that is good.”

Fuzzygalore

Well said, Fuzz. Readers, what do you think?

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5 comments

  1. I think you nailed it – It’s less about raising awareness, and more about giving motorcyclists an excuse to ride (like we need another!).

    It would be possible that those who rode in would pester their coworkers about it though. That counts, right?

  2. I’m inclined to agree with Fuzzy: The only significant aspect of a so-called “motorcycle awareness” day…..is accrued by the riders, not by any spectators or passers-by. And even then, as she says, it’s only the riding part of it that is rewarding. Like, HEY….we’re getting a ride in here!!
    Other than that……it’s a NON-event.
    Compare for a moment, a possible Segway awareness day. Would you, as a motorcyclist, pay any particular attention if you saw 3 or 7 or a dozen Segways on your way to work today? Would you give a shit? Would you have any idea what, ]if anything, they were trying to accomplish? Not likely.
    The same goes (I hate to say it, because their heart is in the right place) for the Ministry of Transport…or whoever…puts those signs up on the highway saying “Watch out for motorcycles”. Isn’t that basically the old “Baby on board” sign?
    It’s the proverbial NOT MY PROBLEM…….YOU’RE NOTHING SPECIAL….DON’T BUG ME.
    Am I sounding grumpy?

  3. Yep I agree, really just a case of ” if we have to explain then you probably won’t understand ”
    We that know,know we know !

  4. Entirely from my point of view, I think I maybe saw a couple of extra bikes on my commute that day/week. Not much seemed to be going on on twitter and there were no business led events anywhere near my commute so it was a bit like celebrating Christmas in Mecca (I imagine that would be a fairly lonesome affair, not that I’ve tried it). Didn’t hurt anything for me but didn’t change anything either. I have the pleasure of riding to work 5 days a week during term time.Do more miles in January than I do in August.

    So in short, I see neither the point nor the harm from where I’m riding.

What do you think?