'The true Soldier fights not because he hates what is in front of him, but because He loves what is behind him.' -G. K. Chesterton

27 May 2010

Uniforms

I'm going to get some hate mail for this one but let me start this by saying It Doesn't Apply To Evryone. Ok? Sheesh.


I have a motorcycle. It's a 1997 Kawasaki Concours, what's commonly known as a sport touring motorcycle. A sensible, mature motorcycle for a sensible, mature man.



I bought it used a couple of years ago with 4000 miles on the clock for $2800.00. Great bike and a killer deal. I love the thing. Smooth, powerful, comfortable and handles very well.

I've got some friends (don't snicker, I've got friends) who also ride. They, almost exclusively ride Harleys. Now, I've got nothing against Harleys, except maybe the price.

And the uniform.

Here's the thing. Harley riders tend to wear essentially the same thing with some (minor) variations. Black leather jackets/vests or sleeveless denim vests. The smallest helmet the law will allow, also black in color. Jeans with black leather chaps. (What's with that by the way? The only place you can see more assless chaps than a Harley fest is at a leather bar in San Francisco. Not that I'd know. I heard is all). Fingerless gloves, black. Black leather boots. Maybe the eye catching face protector that looks like a skull. And facial hair, can't forget the scraggly mustaches and goatees as well as the Grizzly Adams beards. Typical, especially on the chicks. And don't even get me started on the exhaust pipes.

The jackets usually have something stitched to the back. HOG. PIG. Fat Bastard. Bad Ass Outlaw Motorcycles From Hell or Reasonable Nearby Therein, etc. (Insert name of your club here).

Anyway.

Hey guys, I've got some bad news for you. It's called a uniform. When everyone dresses alike and looks alike it's called being 'uniform'. "Oh look honey, it's a fat guy with a stringy goatee wearing all black with a helmet that wouldn't protect a pinheaded squirrel perched on his size 8 3/4 melon riding on a Harley Davidson painted black and decorated with 3000 grinning and smoking skulls that can be heard on the Moon. Isn't he cool? Isn't he unique?"

It's ok though. I get the whole being surrounded by people who look and act just like you. Really, I do. It's just that it doesn't go with the whole loner/biker/outlaw image thing, ya know?

You want to be different, unique, a real outlaw?

Wear something pink. Buy a chartreuse jacket trimmed in vermilion with white Naugahyde boots and a full face helmet painted dayglo green. Instead of skulls, decorate your motorcycle (Scooter or Scoot in uniform outlawese. They even talk alike) with a painting of your favorite poet. How about some colorful balloons or maybe a giraffe? Come on, be creative.

Oh, and before you sport bike guys start chortling and touching each other. You're no better. You're 19 years old (or 45), just got your license and your parents (your wife) bought you the latest go fast racer replica that tops out at 175 mph. It's painted like an classic impressionist took a shit on it, you're wearing a helmet sporting an orange mohawk and a clown face and your ass is clad in a 1500 dollar one piece leather riding suit that Kenny Roberts would ejaculate over. Your motorcycle has a header and set of pipes that cost you nearly the value of the bike they're barely bolted to and sound like 1500 cats trapped in a sack. You're a squid. Admit it and get help. I think there's a 12 step program.

I on the other hand am a mature, experienced rider with thousands of hours in the saddle (dammit, now I'm doing it!). I ride a motorcycle that I can take down to the pharmacy for my Viagra...er, steroids (yeah, that's the ticket) or across the country. I wear a tasteful black and red leather jacket that I paid $99.99 for. My full face helmet is plain black. My boots are brown. My full finger gloves are black and silver. I wear faded jeans. My motorcycle is a sensible green.

I am creatively uncreative. I am different by being ordinary. I am the true bad ass outlaw. No one else rides what I ride or dresses like I dress. Plain. Ordinary. Usual. Expected. Ah, True Uniqueness.

I am wanted and desired by women and envied by men. It's true I swear. Just ask me.

You should immediately stop wearing your uniform and riding your 'everyone has one' Harley or 'too fast for your stoopid ass' crotch rocket. You should endeavor to be just like me. Wear what I wear and ride what I ride.

Hey. We could start a club and snub riders not like us and refuse to wave at them when we ride by and be all cool and bitchin' and rad and outlaw and stuff. Maybe a neato patch our wives could sew on the back of our jackets. I kinda like the sound of "The Bland Ones". Oh yeah.

That'd be so cool. I hear Payless is having a sale on brown boots.

Six

Update: Go read Sheri's take on this topic. It's chock full of LOL goodness. I have got to go for a ride with her if only to see her 'cut a bitch' face.

10 comments:

Dick said...

I love laughing in the faces of those jackoff Harley riders who have to be wearing the clothing with a logo.
Future stats is all most of them are going to become.

LauraB said...

OMG! You are right in all of it! Trooper says that it cracks him up when all the lawyers go out to ride on the wknd (ride badly, too) wearing attire that would have them looking for a cop if worn by someone approaching them Mon-Fri.

We believe in proper motor gear (the keep-my-skin-on-my-bones stuff). We don't believe in having an HD on every bloody thing we own.

He had the FJR 1300 (?) and sold it, knowing it was a young(er) man's bike. He rode for a county for several years (talk about a sexy uniform! I called him my jackbooted thug.)so his new bike is comfortable and known to him - he can sit in it for a full shift without being crippled after. And I know for a fact that he can lay down and take a nap on it.

But I plead guilty to enjoying the assless chaps.

Six said...

Dick. Yep. I laugh at them all the time, especially when I see one trying a simple manuever only to fall over on his ass. It's the simple joys that make life worth living.

Laura. I'm just glad Trooper agrees and isn't plotting some horrific revenge. I knew he was a man of quality. Motor Cops are the very best cops :). As for the assless chaps, mine never leave the bedroom.

Sheri said...

YES! I learned to ride on a Honda Rebel and then got a deal on used Sportster and I've been riding those ever since, including my latest one. BUT...

I've never been part of either the badass culture OR the yuppie Harley culture. I'm my own culture. Spoiled yogurt, I think.

I ride in attire that would make you cringe (safety-wise) so I won't go into that here and bring on the lecture-hate comments on your fine site. Let's just say I ride like me and dress like me and I'm what they call a "loner," I guess. I've been riding since the early 80s and learned from an ex who was like a cross between Sam Elliott and the sheriff in Deadwood. Or someone in Deadwood (HBO series I *loved*). So there.

I do make fun of kids on crotchrockets BECAUSE they are going 95mph on a busy 4-laner in town, popping a wheelie, BUT GOLLY THEY ARE WEARING ALL THEIR NEON SAFETY CLOTHING *AND* A HELMET so that makes it OK.

JohnMXL said...

Please explain what you mean by 'assless chaps'.

Chaps are by design 'assless'.

Aren't chaps that cover the ass called 'leather pants'?

Six said...

Sheri. Yep, Yuppie Harley Culture hits the nail on the head. And you're given a complete attire pass because I'm guessing you'd actually look cute in assless chaps. Unlike me who would look like one of the Village People after 40 years and a hundred pounds of lard. No, don't try to imagine it. You'll go insanely blind.

John. You are absolutely right but 'assless' chaps just sounds funnier. It's like 'weasels' or 'buttafucco'. When you see it you know you're getting some quality comedy.

JohnMXL said...

OK...as long as there's a purpose to the expression, but to me 'assless chaps' is just redundant, whereas 'assless pants' would be funny (or the plot of a bad movie from the late 70s or early 80s).

As for imagining you in chaps, I don't have to...I just have to look in a mirror. Everybody has a purpose...mine might be to serve as an example of 'don't do this!'.

Me said...

Most excellent post...and so true on all counts.

Have a good Memorial Day week-end.

Six said...

Thanks Me. I hope you and Lagniappe have a great weekend.

paul a'barge said...

Jeans with black leather chaps. (What's with that by the way?

Put it down on a gravel road and you'll understand ... immediately.