Backroad Ramblings January 2008

January 20, 2008
Jason Giacchino
Jason Giacchino
Contributing Editor| Articles|RSS

A freelancer and published novelist Jason is currently the editor in chief of Mountain Bike Tales digital magazine and holds a State University of New York degree in applied science with a minor in journalism. When not hunched over a computer monitor, he can be found playing outside in the suburbs of Buffalo, New York.

Let s see - if I scoot the Vision and the Ultra Classic over just a tad closer to the Gold Wing  maybe I could squeeze the ZX-10R in here.
Let’s see – if I scoot the Vision and the Ultra Classic over just a tad closer to the Gold Wing, maybe I could squeeze the ZX-10R in here.

Putting Your Normalcy to the Test

Counselors, therapists, and psychologists frown upon using the word normal to classify a human being. “After all,” they say through their fake smiles, “each one of us is unique in his or her own special way.” Fortunately, my lack of education in the field permits me to throw the term around at will. Even more interesting is that I can pretty much assure that however lenient one’s definition of the concept of normality may be, I’m not a member of the club. And based on the fact that you are reading this right now, you may not be either.

Following are some test questions I’ve spent countless hours preparing (when I was supposed to be working) for the explicit purpose of determining the normality of your status in modern society. Without further ado:

1) Do you look at the motorcycle classifieds daily even when you are broke, have too many bikes as it is, have no room to store another addition to the collection, know that one more bike will result in divorce, all or any combination of the above?

2) Do you have trouble remembering birthdays, anniversaries, holidays, and names of your loved ones but recall exactly the color, displacement, starting routine, and spark plug number of the first motorcycle you’ve owned?

3) Have you ever found yourself in the middle of a meeting at work when memories of the weekend ride become so overpowering that you find yourself smiling at the speaker even when he’s talking about lay-offs?

4) Have you ever talked yourself out of taking your bike somewhere only to regret it immediately and have to pull a u-turn?

5) Have you ever attended a trackday and purchased a bike based entirely upon how cool someone else looked on it?

6) Have you ever found yourself so entranced by the showroom of your favorite dealership that their coffee actually starts to taste good?

7) Have you ever financed a new bike while your car is broken down on the side of the road?

8) Have you ever overheard a conversation between two riders in public that you simply had to butt into?

9) Have you ever been passed on the right by your favorite bike on the interstate and restrained yourself from giving the rider the obligatory one-finger salute simply because you love the bike so much?

10) Have you ever felt sorry for your bike sitting out in the unheated garage on the coldest night of the year? Ever tried to bring it into the house?

11) Can you almost sense your bike’s sadness as you help load it up for its new owner? Conversely, does it feel like a new bike’s excited to be coming home with you?

12) Does Daytona suddenly look a whole lot more appealing during Bike Week?

13) When someone mentions the name Jesse James, do customs and choppers come to mind before six shooters

Normalcy Test Question 16: Have you ever watched an American Chopper marathon
Normalcy Test Question 16: Have you ever watched an American Chopper marathon? You better believe it. Who can’t get enough of Sr. beating on Jr.? I know I dont.

and bank robbers?

14) Do you dread birthdays that will place you in a different racing class?

15) Do the terms desmo, dyna, bevel drive, or springer ever come up in casual conversation?

16) Have you ever watched an American Chopper marathon?

17) Is Sturgis on your short list of top vacation destinations?

18) Does your definition of top fashion include the brands Joe Rocket, Alpinestars, Lugz or Official H-D?

19) Have you ever secured your lunch box to the passenger seat of your bike with a cargo net only to get to work and discover that you’ll be eating chips and candy bars from the vending machine?

20) Do you own a trickle charger, timing light, Clymer manual, spanner wrench, feeler gauge, a book by Peter Egan or Kevin Cameron, have Motorcycle-USA set as your homepage, have a motorcycle-related screensaver, belong to the AMA, could recognize Rossi in a police lineup, or have the ability to identify a bike by the rider’s helmet alone?

If you answered yes to any of the above questions, I have some terrible news about your potential membership in the “normal” sector of our population. However, considering that the administrator of this test has also failed it miserably, actual results may vary. After all, each of us is unique in their own special way.

Oh, and by the way, in case you are concerned, my credentials from an esteemed online-only university based out of Nigeria are in the mail.

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