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22nd July 03

My Life As A Biker

All bikers are tolerant, creative and supportive of each other. True? You wouldn't think so if you read the RealClassic message board! Kindly, amiable octogenarian Napoleon Ozonolysis rides down memory lane...

1. Start riding. Have no money and ride a 4-speed Panther 2-stroke with only 3 gears working (given to me by a mate whose mum was offing it to the tip). Who needs more power than this historic machine? I spit on anyone riding bikes over 197cc. Who needs bikes newer than this classic machine? I spit on anyone riding a bike less than ten years old. I always overtake Tritons, Bonnies. CB750s, etc. Don't believe me? Step outside, loser.

Strangely, the Jawa experience was enough to see off the first wife...

2. Still riding after 5 years on the road. Penniless student but have somehow graduated to a 350 Jawa. Who needs more performance than this sporting machine? I spit on anyone riding bikes over 350cc. Jawa was new at purchase. I sneer at anyone stupid enough to prefer a 3 year-old CB750 at the same price as the Jawa. I also have a BSA Lightning. I sneer at everyone who does not have a BSA Lightning. BSA Lightning never actually gets anywhere under its own steam. I spit on anyone who cannot rebuild their clutch at the side of the road using only a blade of grass and a hair grip. My one-time friends all drive cars. I spit on them. Except when it's raining. Or cold.

'Hurry up and take the picture - I can't hold it for ever...'

3. Still a biker after 6 years on the road. I ride an almost new Triumph T140V, except when I need to actually be somewhere (like work; work permits HP payments on almost new T140V), when I drive a 16 year-old Wolseley. I spit at anyone who doesn't ride everywhere on a Triumph. Real Men all ride Triumphs. Who needs more performance than my 750? I spit at all so-called men who ride bikes with more than 2 cylinders. Mark Williams says something faintly a bit similar in BIKE magazine. I write to Mark Williams commending his insight, so forth. No reply. I spit on BIKE magazine. Change reading to Motorcycle Sport. I overtake all Z1 Kawas, CB750 F1s, etc. Don't believe me? Step outside, loser.

Obviously a Real Man, you think. And then you spot the shoes...

4. Still a biker after 16 years on the road. Have new, 1986 company car. Ride 1966 AJS to work every day and park it in the company car park. I spit on anyone who drives their company car. I sneer at anyone dull enough not to have a company car. Am decently paid and can afford more than one bike. I have a CB750, and two Commandos, and a Trident, and another AJS, and a couple of Matchless twins. I laugh in the faces of losers who have only one bike. But who needs bikes newer than my 20 year-old AJS 650? I pour the hot coals of scorn upon those unfortunates forced to ride an endless stream of new motorcycles. New motorcycles are for girls, old men and … losers. My AJS regularly blows off Ducatis. Don't believe me? Step outside, loser.

5. Still a biker after 18 years on the road. I know everything about bikes. All bike magazines are written by brainless cretins who wouldn't know a CB750 K4 from a CB750 K6 without a guide book. I spit on all motorcycle journalists. My faithful AJS carries me everywhere. I sneer at the unenlightened few who do not understand that the older a bike is, the better it was. Much like old bikers. I start my own bike magazine, convinced that only I (and Mark Williams) know the true way. I entirely ignore the existence of Bill Fowler. Who is he anyway? I have lots of money, and lots of bikes. I deride anyone with only one bike, and anyone who does not ride an AJS. There are no other classics than AJS, and who would want a new bike anyway? You cannot have as much fun on a new bike as you can on an AJS. I have a new bike, and I know this to be true. I lap Mallory Park on my AJS almost faster than anyone else. All those who cheat by passing me are only compensating for the inadequacy of their manhood. Don't believe me? Step outside, loser.

6. Still a biker after 32 years. I am very old. But my wife is much younger, rides like a demon, writes like an angel, rocks like the devil herself and breaks all my bikes. I sneer at folk who do not have a domestic pet capable of destroying a motorcycle a week. How do they fill their lives? I am so affluent that I can afford any bikes I want. I spit at those who can only afford one MV Agusta. I have so many bikes I need to rent industrial storage units to put them in. I laugh at those who ride their bikes anywhere. I buy and sell bikes at a huge loss just because I can. I have an accountant who encourages this for tax purposes. I drive a Mercedes-Benz. I weep with mirth at those who think that being a biker is all about riding bikes. Riding bikes is too cold, too hot, too wet, too dry - the Mercedes-Benz has climate control. My Mercedes-Benz can pass any motorcycle on the road. Don't believe me? You'll be hearing from my lawyer, biker scum.

7. Still a biker after 50 years. I have an AJS which I saved from the bankruptcy and divorce. It is a fine AJS, although I am concerned that I can no longer start it, and if I had any money I would buy a Royal Enfield with an electric starter. Real bikers only need one cylinder (and an electric starter). I spit (dryly) on anyone whose flagging manhood needs more than a single cylinder. I remember that I was the fastest rider of my generation. I sneer at modern softies who ride modern bikes but who are slower than I was when I was their age. My AJS and I can still out-ride all of you. Don't believe me? Oh, who cares…

In the end, it could all come down to an 'umble Ajay

Right? Wrong? Tell us!


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