Much has been written about motorcycles and motorcycling, and there are a few things that have become “quotable”… some attributed to the first person to utter the statement and many to no one, i.e., anonymous.
While there are many, many large collections of quotes about motorcycling, these are a select few of the ones by unknown authors that have always struck a chord with me…
Motorcycling is not, of itself, inherently dangerous. It is, however, extremely unforgiving of inattention, ignorance, incompetence, or stupidity.
A bike on the road is worth two in the shed.
It’s not the destination, it’s the journey.
If you don’t ride in the rain, you don’t ride.
If you still have fuel in the tank, you are not lost yet.
Riding faster than everyone else only guarantees you’ll ride alone.
Don’t lead the pack unless you know where you’re going.
Never ride faster than your guardian angel can fly.
Only a Biker knows why a dog sticks his head out of a car window.
And then there’s this one by Robert M. Pirsig, author of Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance: An Inquiry Into Values, which really sums up why I always rather be “ON” anything with two wheels than “IN” anything else with four wheels:
In a car you’re always in a compartment, and because you’re used to it you don’t realize that through that car window everything you see is just more TV. You’re a passive observer and it is all moving by you boringly in a frame.
On a cycle the frame is gone. You’re completely in contact with it all. You’re in the scene, not just watching it anymore, and the sense of presence is overwhelming.
I would probably be remiss if I also didn’t confess that all of my most deep thinking takes place when I’m riding either a motorcycle or a bicycle… such as today while riding home from work only to find myself asking rhetorical questions about life to no one in particular. It was during that moment of introspection that I found myself thinking about several of these quotes.
There’s just something about being on a bike and finding myself “in the zone” where I’m fully aware of my surroundings and actively managing my machine that open up portals of introspection into a variety of subjects that have nothing to do with bikes or riding.
So, yeah… I like bikes. But there are a lot more reasons behind it than most casual observers would ever guess. Call it cheap mental therapy… Well, cheap compared to weekly therapy sessions! Which brings me to my final, favorite motorcycle quote: