Archive for November 6th, 2008

bmrcI’m not sure who coined the phrase; “I don’t want a stereo on my motorcycle, or engine sounds in the living room”, but I’ve tended to agree. 

However, I’m somewhat surprised at how much of the riding public seem to enjoy having a sound system on their motorcycles.  I do have my reservations about music or musical device accessories while riding.  There seems to be a proliferation of devices some of which are specifically built for motorcycle use and others designed for the helmet.

I’m tuneless on the road.  When riding a motorcycle on an open two-lane highway, you have a lot of time to think. After a while you get tired of thinking, so maybe you sing songs to yourself in your head. Anything can trigger a song. I remember heading east across Montana on the way to the 105th Anniversary and seeing a sale sign for Amarillo Western shirts.  For the next several hours George Strait’s “Amarillo by Morning” kept running through my head. It’s a great song.  But after awhile the music in your head turns down the volume, and all you’re left with is yourself in the wind. You may not be aware of it, but if you ride a motorcycle and really like it, I think this is probably a large part of the reason for your passion.

Obviously some motorcyclist disagree because there are lots of riders who have “Tunes.”  If a motorcycle is a metaphor for quality, then when you’re out in the wind, the world disappears inside the quality of the ride.  It takes practice, finding the quality in motorcycling.  It takes the ability to concentrate without concentrating. I consider music too much of a distraction and a great ride can only be diminished by sounds other than “throttle” music!

How about you?  Does music instill calmness and a soothing, relaxed mental state?  Is riding with music like skiing new powder snow and adds a rhythm that makes everything happen with a certain smoothness?  Do you lust after a Garmin 376C to avoid rain storms and listen to college football games on Saturday afternoon rides?  Or does the idea of an iPod mounted on your motorcycle remind you of that horrible long ride on a bad application of chip seal?

Photo courtesy of BRMC and Flickr.


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