Expletive Deleted: That’s a Rider …

I don’t let any those things inside my head.

This story is not meant to in any way make light of the horrific school shooting in Tennessee. What occurred there was a soul-destroying tragedy perpetuated by a person who hopefully gets their own cell in hell, for eternity.

Typically, and much to the consternation of several of my friends and the person I am currently married to, I don’t let much from the outside world into my head. I try, very hard, not to watch any television. I don’t read mainstream news websites. I don’t pull books off the public library shelf willy-nilly to be brought home to cerebrally ingest. I look at many new books and ask myself, “Why would I want to put this in my head?”

Most of my friends know the quickest way to get their number blocked on my mobile phone is to send me a link to Assface (FB). I believe social media is a pariah on modern society; it has helped make an entire generation of Americans so that their normal mood is riddled with anxiety. Children are no longer bored, thanks to social media and video games. I believe that boredom is where young people discover who they really are, those periods of self-reflection help them understand what their dreams really are, and what they value.

I don’t let any of those things inside my head. I find I am a much happier, productive person, and a better dad if I just deal with what is right here, in my house, in my tiny workshop, and in the world of motorcycle racing.

That said, I was sucked into watching the police body camera footage from one of the brave police officers who stopped the school shooter. A friend had it out on his phone and was showing someone. I was trying not to watch when I heard the lead officer shout “Go!” The tone in his shout made my head snap to attention. I have heard that tone before; that shout is from my world. It wasn’t the volume of his shout; it was the way he said it.

I’m the first to admit that anyone who says that they understand riders is a liar. Real riders. Not just humans who can ride a motorcycle or race one. There are a select few who can only be described with one word: “riders.”

I’m not suggesting that anyone seek out that footage where a human being is shot to death and watch it. But if you already have, consider this: the lead police officer, the one directing the rest of the tactical team to find the shooter, the one shouting “Go!” and shoving his team forward, may not own a motorcycle, ride a motorcycle, or race a motorcycle. But he is a rider.

See, that’s what real riders are like. They can’t get to the danger fast enough.



Gary the Vee


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