“Fifteen miles from nowhere, stuck out on a shoulder, A biker works as hard as he can on that machine,
Storms clouds rolling in, and one thing’s for certain, it may not be a ‘runnin but at least it will be clean…”
Looks like rain outside and tonight, I am a bit melancholy. Once again, it’s time for Thunder in the Sand, the fall rally put on by our local club, Circle of Pride MC. Usually, by this time of night, I’d be over at the main stage, dancing with a rally friend from up north and my fellow campers. We’d pass some “apple pie” around in the crowd, and everyone would be singing along with Ross and Rotten as loud as they could. That would just be the start of the evening’s entertainment, and our time to de-stress from everyday life. An adult playground, if you will.
In our camp, on any given day, “It’s Saturday!”
I’ve been to many rallies and have met many new friends along the way, from different backgrounds and from all over the country. One thing that I have noticed about most of the bikers that I know is that they highly value freedom and liberty. With that freedom comes responsibility…in the main, showing respect.
Respect is something that is learned, and earned. So many times, I have watched some drunken idiot run off at the mouth and end up in a bad situation. Does that mean bikers are violent people? Absolutely not. However, they do protect their own, and they know the meaning of loyalty, as well as respect. Our rally allows colors…here’s a few examples of what I would call “biker etiquette”:
1. The obvious one: don’t be an idiot. You can get drunk, you can have fun, you can even take your clothes off (well, if you’re female). However, what you CANNOT do is shoot off at the mouth to someone you don’t know, or hit on someone’s woman. That is a really stupid thing to do, and can put you somewhere you don’t want to be…like a hospital.
2. Don’t touch someone’s colors. They don’t want you to touch their leathers at all, let alone their patches. Same for their bike. It can be the coolest motorcycle you have ever seen, but it would be a really dumb idea to sit on it without permission,
3. Don’t name drop. No one cares who you know, and those who do might care a bit too much, if you know what I mean.
4. For the girls: act like a lady and you’ll be treated like one….you get the picture.
5. Don’t walk up into someone’s camp without permission if you don’t know them. Especially in the middle of the night.
6. You can buy a vest, you can buy some patches, but don’t wear a 3 piece unless you know what it means and are in a club with others who do, as well.
7. Above all, have some respect. Many bikers are veterans, and they have done more for our country than some people could ever dream to do. They deserve it…so give it to them.
Biker women are a whole different lot…and I’m am proud to say that some of my good friends are bikers. My friend Teri is the only woman who regularly drag races at Conesville, and as F*ck Man Charlie would say, “Harley wins again!”
Not all of us ride, or some us are just passengers….that makes us no less deserving of your courtesy than those, like Teri, who can handle a bike on her own. I am a disaster on my own two feet, and really short…that doesn’t make me a good candidate to ride my own! Check out this video of a guy racing with a 1942 WLA military Harley 45 solo at our drag strip on the grounds (attention: audio NSFW):
Obviously, a lot of those things are biker specific, but respect is something that is due to everyone. One of the things that we need to remember, as those who espouse the ideas of freedom and liberty, is that interference in others’ business is not something that we want to advocate. That also means respecting the views of others, without trying to impress your own upon them, uninvited. Some in our movement need to learn this.
We all have one goal in mind: individual liberty and freedom from tyranny. Bikers are very patriotic people for the most part, and some of the best that you’ll ever meet. Treat them with respect, and you’ll get it in return. The same with the person that you meet on the street, or the one in line behind you at the grocery store, or the person who serves your food when you go out to eat. We could all do with being a bit more decent to each other…and working toward a common goal, rather than dividing amongst ourselves.
And to my Conesville family…I wish I could be with you all this weekend! Much love, ride safe, and keep your knees in the breeze.
Have a great, safe holiday weekend!
(click the icon to link and listen)
Love my Conesville family!
and the ocean isn’t blue just because it’s water, a biker ain’t crazy, just a bit insane…
Broke down all alone without any cover, there’s nothing near as wet as a Harley in the rain…”
Ross and Rotten