NOT a good day....
My neighbor died yesterday.
I had fear that this was going to be the inevitable conclusion to his purchase of a brand new 2008 Yamaha R-1 as a very first bike.
He was out riding his new four wheeler when he stopped by and told me of the purchase. I guess he wanted me to be happy for him….it was kinda difficult as alarms were sounding in my brain.
I asked if he had his endorsement? Naw I got a learners permit. I strongly advised that this purchase was inappropriate for a new rider with no training. I encouraged him to take the msf course asap and to not ride the bike until he did so. I told him it was inappropriate to ride the bike until he had training. I used the car as an example and an airplane as an example: training first!!
I forgot I was invisible. Almost 50 years young and trying to save an immortal 22 year old from a decision that is laced with mistakes and poor thinking. My neighbor gave me the yeah yeah ..i don’t need no training arrogant response.
To those in power:
I ASK YOU SIRS/MAMS….WHY DOES THE LEARNER’S PERMIT EXIST?!?! WHY IS IT RENEWABLE? WHAT INSANE BUREAUCRATIC ACTION RESULTED IN THIS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
On a motorcycle , in a car, in a plane……….you must have the information/training BEFORE YOU engage in the activity. We do not live in a vacuum! Decisions affect other people who happen to be in our worlds or just happen to be near us with imperfect timing!!!
It is interesting that the state requires drivers education before operating a car..
A motorcycle which is arguably more vulnerable and more demanding of good decision making of its pilot….requires no training at all.
My brain tries to blame scott b****. A successful business man who at the time he was the president of the north Carolina motorcycle dealers association..forced the learners permit thru the legislature. Scott just wants to sell more motorcycles. He is removing obstacles to that end. Guy wants to buy a bike? Sure step this way…do I need a license? No we’ll get you hooked up with a learners permit.
This allows people to side step the most important step to buying a motorcycle. most people just fumble around hopeing to be lucky. Or they let there buddies teach them techniques that are laced with assumption and hope? Bad habits get passed on and on and on.
The msf has done an admirable job at trying to address this “skills gap”…ignorance? There program is not perfect but it is very good and is constantly evolving. This training is just the starting point………..the bare minimum!
The advanced riding course by the msf is next…this goes further but not far enough..
Keith code/aaron Stevenson/ etc go even further and start getting to high skill development.
Courses and training cannot repel impulsiveness, insecurity, desperately wrong thinking, or the arrogant blindness of youth.
Once the skills package is “installed” and “in use”….threat recognition is next focus.
My neighbor is still dead…his family will naturally place blame/accountability away from him. “it was THAT bike”! “it was motorcycles in general”. He will forever be a victim.
In their mind..
In my mind . yes he was a victim….of decision making that involved way too high a level of hope,luck,assumption,blind arrogance.
Have you ever climbed up on a ladder that was unstable and lied to yourself “it will hold…it will be okay”. Only to fall and have the audacity to be surprised or to call it an “accident”?
If you get struck by a car while playing in the middle of the street. Is that really an accident? If you get struck by a car while sitting in your rocking chair on your front porch is most certainly an accident or attempted homicide.
If you consistently look down the barrel of a gun to try to assess its “status” loaded or unloaded. Is it an “accident” you got shot doing so?
If you buy a motorcycle and try to operate it with out any training….is this any different
The government should not be having to coerce you into seeking training. You should be seeking it on your own as part of a decision to learn more /participate in any activity…rock climbing, skiing, parachuting, hand gliding,equine activities, hunting, scuba diving , canoeing, boating,etc THIS IS CALLED RISK MANAGEMENT.
YOU WANT TO RIDE? You owe it to yourself and those that love you to do everything with in your power to make the activity as secure as possible. DO NOT AVOID CHALLENGE AND DO FOLLOW YOUR DREAMS..but do the thinking ahead of time . do analysis of cost /benefit. Do not allow “hope” or “luck” to be the main component of your thinking.
I love riding my bikes. This morning I had a wonderful multi faceted adventure. It was peaceful and satisfying….then I came home and found the news of my neighbor hanging in the air.
Drop kick the learners permit
Evoke a tiered licensing system
Lowest level restricted to -30 rwhp
Highest level so challenging that only the most knowledgable/skilled/can pass it . you want to ride Yamaha r-1s and hyabusas? SHOW ME you have the skill package /knowledge. Level should be so high that those that achieve this level are proud of their accomplishment
Re: NOT a good day....
eloquent and true.
Re: NOT a good day....
I am sorry about the loss of your neighbor, but I cannot agree with your philosophy.
Many riders grow up riding in the dirt. They get a drivers license, and they learn the rules of the road. Or, they have at least traveled in many automobiles with different people before they get their license. They've lasted this long on two wheels in the dirt, and they've witnessed the rules of the road, so a bike for a beginner driver, while not a great idea, is somewhat do-able.
Then, back to my original statement. Take myself for example: I was 18 and had ridden dirt on 2 and 4 wheels for over a decade. My 1st bike was a FZR600 back when I was 18. I managed, and never wrecked. Only rode on a permit. Why make me jump through many various hoops when I'd have a SCDL for three years? I knew the rules of the road, and knew how to handle two wheels, so why make me have to jump through hoops?
We, as Americans, want less governmental control. We want freedom. Thank God we have it. I'm honestly surprised we are still able to go without a brain bucket. 95% of the time I wear mine, but it's nice to not have to if we're stupid enough not to want to.
Government can save lives, but that is not their duty. They should, and often times do, give the option.
Your neighbor, while I'm somewhat ashamed to say it, was stupid. You know it, I know it. He got himself in over his head with a liter-bike as his first bike, and he payed the ultimate price. You tried to warn him, but he didn't heed the advice. The death isn't on you, it isn't on the state -- it's on him. No one strapped him to the rocket and blasted him off; he twisted the throttle on his own.
I'm somewhat interested in how it happened. If it was reckless behavior, then no state mandated course would ever prvent that from happening -- you can't cure stupid.
We've all blasted off a bit faster than the law allows. We've all done stupid stuff on the bikes; we've all broken the law when riding.
Again, I'm sorry that you lost your neighbor. But, making those who know how to ride jump through hoops just because some people don't...well, I still don't agree with it.
Re: NOT a good day....
does the government have the right to protect you from yourself? should we be free to assume the risks we want to in the way we choose?
these are tough questions. in theory no.... we are "free" to live or die as we choose. on the other hand ..we do not live in a vacum. our choices and descisions can and do impact others in their lives as well.
no simple answers.
as for my neighbor....he died at 1 am in the morning at over 100 mph on this bike...into the trees without the benefit of a helmet. me thinks that alcohol may have been involved. he apparently made some choices that ultimately led to his end. i do not believe that a smaller bike would have saved him nor do i hold motorcycling responsiable.
i do still think the learners permit is a crock. and i believe tiered liscensing would help. i am a hypocrite and am comfortable as such....mostly i want to see a reduction in bad descision making and the consequences of same. liter superbikes do forgive nothing. they compress time and distance in such a way as to cause serious problems. perhaps it is wishful thinking ... maybe there is no cure for the arrogance/relative ignorance and immortality of youth.
thanks for input
Re: NOT a good day....
freedom is always good but the lost of life through a stupid act effects everyone thus intruding in other people's freedom. I'm not one for more government but when you let the stupid sue for their own stupidity that is what pisses me off. I feel really bad for his family and friends cause they are the ones paying for his lack of judgement. A tier system won't change stupidity but it does change behavior. Here in Cali if you are under the age of 21y/o you must take the CMSP(MSF) course to get your license and that has work well for the state. Sorry for the rambling but I'm tired of people I know that ride ok on a 500cc or 600cc jump to a liter and get hurt and some have lost their lives also.
I believe that a liter bike should be priced at about $18-$20K to get it out of the hands of some who only been riding for a short time. Think about it, by the time most people get around to spend that kind of money they will have about 3+ years on the rode. As of right now the only difference between a 600 and a 1K is only about $2K so why not jump for the bigger bike because "I won't out grow it":headshake: I know this is not the same but if I could have bought a LT1 Corvette right after high school for $2-5K more that the 6 cylinder Mustang I got you think I wouldn't have? Many of you can't say you wouldn't either.
Right or wrong everyone has their sides. I know my sons will ride as soon as they can and I'm okay with that since they both have dirt and road course experience but I will do my best to make sure they pick a bike that is right for them.
Okay I'm done...
Re: NOT a good day....
Which is against the law in NC anyway.
ace it Mike, the guy acted stupid and paid the price. Unfortunate, yes, but that's just the way it is.
You gonna keep spamming every section on the forum with this?
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