– Motorcycle News, Editorials, Product Reviews and Bike Reviews

Motorcycle News, Editorials, Product Reviews and Bike Reviews

Readers Respond to More Isn’t Always Better

We received a lot of email from readers resonding to Dirck’s May 14, 2007 article “More Isn’t Always Better. While many agreed with Dirck, those who disagreed stated their opinions loud and clear (which always makes for interesting reading). Below, in their unedited form, are the responses.

  • Here here! Well except for the 3 inches of travel thing.

  • …and there weren’t internet moto-journalists! Just kidding. I love the site.

  • had to laugh at ……more isn’t always better ………..but i did think it was right on ……..sad but true

  • I used to love browsing your columns in motorcycledaily, because the pages only contained subjects that were about motorcycles. But when you write about motorcycles and try to input your sexist ideals along with the writing, the content just gets sour.

    “It really was a man’s world.” – So what are you trying to say? Is it really bad that women finally have the opportunity to live fulfilling lives other than housework and child rearing? Should we not allow women to enjoy the purity of riding, or do you believe in keeping all females complacent and restricted, because you feel they are lesser than you? I have great sorrow for your wife/girlfriend/mother/grandmother/sister/niece or other relation to a female, if you hold these oppressive ideals. Keep them in the kitchen right? Women riding motorcycles?!? Where are we, in the year 2007?

    “There was nothing sexist about bikini girls posing on bikes.” – If you have a daughter or will have a daughter, please send pictures of her when she is matured into a “woman” ( I use that term lightly your in presence seeing as though, they really aren’t deemed to be considered people in your
    eyes) while posing for a motorcycle, wearing nothing but a bikini. Then my male companions and I can degrade her and see her the same way as you; an object with no mind, with the purpose of pleasing men. Nothing sexist about that right?

    This article really made you seem like an elitist pig, and I hope you are proud of yourself.

    By bringing in more individuals into the motorcycle community, we prosper as people with the benefits of accepting all individuals and living a communal based lifestyle. You are right in that some people need educating when they join the life of two-wheels, but are we to shun them out or be the teachers?

    By sending out a “keep out” message, you really do damage to the motorcycle community.

    Talk about riding and motorcycles, not your close minded ideals.

  • You hit the proverbial right on the head.

  • Yep, and riding in town with straight open pipes, jacking the throttle at every red light would get you a cop with his night stick shoved up your exhaust followed by a ticket for excessive noise.
    There were no organized groups clamoring for your money to protect you from the uniformed government of state and country. Everything remains the same, only the cosmetics change…

  • Troll:-)

    (not that we don’t enjoy a good troll every now and then!!)

  • Amen to that!

    To think of someone on another bike as quite possibly a poseur wasn’t the case either. You either were a motorcyclist or you weren’t. There are just so many out there now that own a bike for no other reason than to impress others. That can take on a number of forms but I feel the ones that grate at me the most are the ones who gravitate immediately toward cruisers and choppers. As a breed most of them fall short of what motorcycles are capable of.

    I also miss the vast variety we used to have in new bikes, most notably in the sub-250cc range. While such a bike wouldn’t interest me today I feel they are a good way to be introduced into motorcycling. Today we have empty-nester baby boomers who go out and buy that Hog they always wanted or the teens and 20-something who go for the gawd awful fast sportbikes.

    I find myself looking now at adventure tourers as a breed that interests me. Different, capable and FUN!

    Thanks for the brief look back. Dirck, you should think about doing a piece about what motorcycling was like back in the 50s thru 70s. I think it would be a fascinating read. Not just the bikes but the whole flavor of the sport.

  • With all due respect….it sounds to me like sour grapes……As if you’re upset that motorcycling is no longer the realm of the outlaw / outcast / contrarian and they’re too many people at the party you undoubtedly helped promote.

    Yeah…it sucks that the advancement of the sport has brought us some of the most reliable, capable and fun machines ever. “Back in the day” – some Japanese bikes were total abortions. Now….no one makes a bad bike. From the bottom to the top of their ranges – no one makes a bad motorcycle.

    Yeah….that sucks.

  • Right you are. Why not do something Old School the first weekend in June? Fly out to Virginia and attend a C&S biker event.
    I promise you, none of the people who look like outlaws will be bankers. Images from last year’s event:

  • Here are a few more reasons why more isn’t always better…
    • It was rare to be held up in traffic by plodding groups of riders on your favorite twisty roads.
    • It didn’t take hours to leave the track after a weekend of great road racing.
    • Most people had motorcycles because they liked to ride them, not because it made them look/feel like a bad-ass or a Ricky Racer.
    • People rode to Bike Week to see the races.
    • Manufacturers and magazines hadn’t yet convinced us that we were nothing if we didn’t have the latest, biggest, baddest, fastest machine. As a result, we learned to ride on light, small-displacement (mostly off-road) machines and graduated to larger bikes as our skills improved.
  • I liked today’s post and it brought back some (motocross) memories from 30 or 35 years ago:
    • It was a HUGE deal when an American won a Trans-AMA race.
    • It was a HUGE deal to watch the Carlsbad GP on Wide World of Sports (6 months after the race).
    • Drooling over the one-off exotic “factory” motocross machines.
    • “Suspension adjustments” meant using a welder and angle iron to get “laid down” shocks.
    • Supercross was only the “Superbowl of Motocross” held at the LA Coliseum.
    • When Bultacos, Huskys, CZs, or Maicos were THE bikes to have.
    • Drooling over those first green and silver Honda Elsinores.
    • Trying to convince Mom and Dad that motocross was safer than playing football and you had to be in MUCH better shape.
    • Wearing true “leathers”.
    • Riding the back trails to the local gas station with my brothers on our old DT Yamahas…..pulling a dollar out of the headliner or our solid color JC Whitney helmets, filling the tank with gas, buying a carton of milk and a TastyKake and wondering where to put the change!

    Thanks for taking me back!

  • Motorcycle popularity isn’t great? Boy…isn’t that the truth.

    40 years ago in Norcal you could go riding in any open field, today land owners are afraid they’ll be sued if you get hurt.

    The pits at races, and the races themselves, are jam packed with what appears to be groupies. A lot of these folks don’t even understand what they’re watching.

    The OHV parks are filled with inconsiderate and careless folks who seem to either get seriously hurt or seriously hurt someone nearly every weekend because they think they are the only one on the trail. Our local OHV park has multiple medivac helicopter visits every weekend.

    We have our share of idiots and posers in Norcal either doing stand-ups on the freeways or carving up the canyons in mass, while not even giving a thought to the rights or perceptions created by the non-motorcycling public. We all end up being guilty by association for their transgressions just because we ride.

    And don’t even get me started on thefts, bikes, tools, or equipment. There used to be a code where folks looked after each other and each other’s stuff. Now you don’t dare leave anything of value unsecured.

    The only good thing about motorcycling’s popularity is it has help fuel great leaps in the technology available to the common person. Manufacturers are pouring money into R&D because there is are a massive amount of folks who are willing to pay for the latest and greatest racing or bling technology.

  • I was quite surprised by the quote “It really was a man’s world” in the article MORE ISN”T ALWAYS BETTER. I was left with the impression that this waxing for the old days implies some chauvinist inclination (I mean that word in its actual definition, not in the manner it is used in sit-coms). My wife is my favorite person to ride with. She can keep up, she knows when to cut loose and when to chill, and she isn’t afraid of taking it to the track. Please don’t feed the ignorance of those who already hate women.

  • I couldn’t agree with you more!

    I have been riding and racing motorcycles since age 13 (I’m now 48) and I have enjoyed many aspects of our sport.
    I am primarily a motocross rider/enthusiast, and, as a Folsom CA resident, I have always looked forward to watching the Pro Riders at Hangtown (my home track)!

    These days, however, the crowds, the view obstructing tents lining the track, and the wasted non-moto spectators have dampened my enthusiasm for the event.

    Some years ago, I stopped going to Supercross events for similar reasons.

    I often think I am being selfish in preferring things as they were, however, not long ago, things were so much better!

  • A funny thing happened recently to a Harley couple I know. They sold their Harleys and bought sport bikes. Both of them were in their late 40’s and never rode anything but Harley’s. He bought a new FZ1 and she bought a Ducati 695 Monster. They love their new bikes to the shock of all their Harley friends. They use to laugh at me showing up for a ride on my 996 when I had a Harley at home as well. They’d ask, “Why do you ride that thing?” They made their purchase over the winter and couldn’t wait to bump into me on a ride. They knew I would get it.
    When asked by Harley folk why they sold their Harley’s and bought sport bikes they reply with this comment. “Don’t you know? Harley’s aren’t cool any more!”

  • Your observations couldn’t be more true! Being a rider of over 35 years I’ve seen this hobby ( I prefer “lifestyle”) change and not for what I consider the better. Until the big wave started a half dozen years ago and everyone that could write a $25,000 plus check bought a “custom” chopper, us bikers (here I prefer “riders”) were the usually unseen, unheard, unrepresented society. I thought that was a bad thing then. Then was then, now is now and now I long for the old days! Now all of us bad ass bikers on our chrome slow pigs in our gobs of off the shelf, weathered look leather, beanies or psuedo-race leathers on our bumble bee rockets are becoming a thorn in the side of society. They didn’t notice us much back then. Well let me tell you they do now! Ear-deafening straight pipes, holding up longs lines of traffic screaming look at me, I’m cool (at least for the weekend). Hyper-fast clowns on busy highways trying to save front tire skin by never touching down. Mix in some selective must see TV, some big city parties complete with eye candy in g-strings, plenty of booze and guys on two wheels playing Brando for the camera and you got yourself a poop load of bad press. It makes me long for the days of not being noticed! If ever there’s a biker tattoo out there for me maybe it should read: “More Isn’t Always Better”.

  • You’re on to something. And though I’m not old enough to know how things were in days past, and thus adding to the ‘problem’ perhaps, I think I know how you feel. Cops want to crack down on loud exhausts, new bikers don’t even wave back at you (nor have the skill/presence of mind to do so), and so on. Dirt-cheap Chinese motorcycles aren’t helping things either… more and more people are picking up these eggbeaters, and I saw a whole ‘gang’ last March heading out with ski gloves for hand protection.

  • You bet it is great that motorcycling has become so popular. You have listed a handful of reasons why you think not, but I think you need to give this another think.

    Back in the sixties, Honda told the world about all of the nice people you could meet on a Honda. Try to remember what it was like before Honda discovered all of those nice people:

    Before Honda (BH), a bike meant a piece of crap BSA or Triumph or Norton or it meant a pile of junk Harley. Don’t forget Allstate and Zundapp. Now the choices will make you dizzy, and reliability is the rule, not the exception.

    Before Honda (BH), traveling on a bike meant carrying 50 pounds of tools and 25 pounds of spares, and you needed to be a pretty good roadside mechanic. Before Honda, it was a long way between motorcycle shops. Now, there is a motorcycle shop in practically every town over 5000 people.

    Before Honda (BH), electric start was a pipe-dream.

    BH, big horsepower meant 40, not 140.

    BH, people who passed you on the street didn’t throw you a wave – if you were lucky they didn’t throw anything at you at all. (Hollister is now cool, go figure.)

    BH, the terms “riding a motorcycle” and “keeping your license” didn’t belong in the same sentence, at least not where I grew up. Dallas cops hated motorcyclists. Pulling out of the driveway meant having another confrontation with an angry cop, followed by a much angrier confrontation with my father.

    BH, gear was a pair of work gloves and a blue jean jacket. You froze your ass when it was cold (assuming you could get your bike kick-started). You got drenched when it rained. You got hurt when you fell off.

    BH, there wasn’t a professional motorcycle race within 1000 miles of my home town.

    Before Honda meant before O-ring chains. Think about it.

    BH, there was no such thing as a 5 day wait for parts. The wait for parts was so long that importing your own from Saskatoon was a practical alternative.

    So, Dirck, maybe you grew up in Shangri-La. Maybe your Amal carbs and Lucas electrics worked perfectly every time. Maybe you never shook loose an external oil line or blew the insulator off a spark plug when you were 100 miles from the nearest motorcycle shop.

    Or maybe you should give this another think. For my money, I’ll take today. You can have the good old days.

  • That one hit home hard with me, sucks to see it all go to s**t in your own lifetime.

  • Darn it Dirck!
    You have me reminiscing about when my father took me out on his Kawasaki 500 for the first time. He would have me sit on the tank and we would toodle around on long empty country roads in Wisconsin. The sense of freedom, excitement and awe were overwhelming. It is truly one of the best memories of my life.
    So what I meant to say was thanks Dirck.

  • 25 yrs. ago you didn’t feel like a 500cc bike was a girls bike.

  • I’ve followed your site for some time, as you always have something new and interesting to share. Regarding your latest post “More isnt’ always better”, I was hoping that you could elaborate on what you mean by, “It really was a man’s world.”

  • You are so right. I started riding in Northern Arizona in 1984. I used to fly through Sedona to Jerome and Prescott. I remember getting mad at myself for waving to another rider that turned out to be a girl. I rarely saw police cars at my favorite canyons because there weren’t any other bikes but me. However, I do wish I could learn how to do a wheelie without killing myself… too late at age 48. Good opinions on your part, thanks.

  • …not for this reader of Motorcycle Daily, anyway.
    I wouldn’t want to bore you with my story and will try to be brief: I got my first bike in 1970 and just in time for “On Any Sunday”‘s release as an impressionable young kid. I always had a motorcycle, either street or dirt from that year up until 1993, when my wife and I got heavily into bicycle racing. I got my next and current bike in 2003, a low mileage 2001 BMW F650GS.

    My how things changed in those ten years. The biggest change for me was the motorcycling had gone from being counter-culture to mainstream popular-culture. This is a great time for everything related to the industry, but somehow being out on the road with all these newfound rugged individualists and Rossi wannabes doesn’t have the same meaning that it once did. We live a couple of hundred yards from mile marker two on the Blue Ridge Highway in Virginia, and all too often if the weather is at all decent we’re not listening to the wind and the birds, we’re hearing aftermarket-exhausted Harleys making their presence known for miles.

    Today’s motorcycle stars are pop (“rock”) stars at the same time, and largely household names. I will always selfishly cherish memories of the days of the largely unknown even at their zenith, the Cal Rayborns, the Sylvain Geboers. Every aspect of life was simpler then, wasn’t it? Waxing nostalgic, what a way to go!

    Look us up if you ever get over this way, and thanks for a great web site.

  • Thirty years ago no one in there “right mind” would even consider paying money to spectate at a motorcycle race. You either came with the rider or maybe happened to be cow-trailing in the vicinity.

    Rubber band starts, bike in neutral, hand on helmet–GO!
    Joel Robert could always holeshot with hand on helmet start. jamb that CZ in gear and go///////////

  • You will probably get a lot of letters of disapproval for your statements, but I could not agree with more. Though I’m probably a spring chicken in your perspective (26 years old), It’s difficult for me to relate to most riders my age. I live in California where the weather is beautiful year round, but each winter creates a hard line that separates serious riders from the fair-weather warriors. I’m not mr. hardcore holier-than-thou purist, but my bike isn’t a fashion statement or a toy, it’s my lifestyle.

    I’m thankful for the increased accessibility to great motorcycle technology in modern times, but not so much for negative stigma riders in my demographic have created for motorcycling.

  • I actually agreed with this article.

    I have became the “Not a real biker” because I wear my custom made Vanson Sport Rider body armor and Arai Quantum helmet on my Buell Thunderbolt, with nearly 30,000 miles on it, and a “real biker” on his custom $ 38,000 stretched, raked, hardtail, chopper/kit bike with 600 miles on the clock thinks that only sissys wear that shit.

    Of course, I don’t wear an ashtray on my head and call it a helmet either.

    I don’t get a lot of grief, as I am 6’7″ tall, 230 lbs and in pretty good shape. (Meaning I can run to the street corner without needing an ambulance)

    I do think chicks on bikes are hot.

    I do think guys on bikes are not.

    And I wish that the “Bikers” would wave with ALL of their fingers if/when they wave.

    And I have 6 motorcycles and 2 scooters, and Do not own a bike trailer, and have NEVER trailered my bikes anywhere.

    I actually RODE from New Orleans to Oak Harbor, Whidbey Island, WA, snowstorms, rain, sleet and all.

    May of 1985, and it was one of the great trips of my life!

    No trailer involved. Never even thought of it.

    Would not have mattered anyways, as I did not own anything to tow a trailer with anyways.

    I bought a Buell in Milwaukee and flew up and rode it back the same day. 800 miles in one sitting. Great ride.

    I also bought a Buell from Earl Small in Atlanta and flow down and rode it back over a friday/saturday. 850 miles in a day and a half.

    Great ride.

    I also ride to Road America for the superbike nationals and sleep on Walter Rohrich’s couch (Yes, that Walter of RV1000 fame).

    Great ride.

  • I was glad to see I am not the only one who thinks motorcycling has become too popular.It makes us look old to start remembering how it use to be,and I think all the new bikes,clothes,accessories,tv coverage Etc are great, but some things were better before:


  • As a long time rider and Honda Sport Touring Association member (even though I no longer own a Honda) we have one custom that is performed at each rally my best friend and I attend. The first night toast. With the first beer that is cracked after a day of riding, the toast is “It’s a Mans World” At least for that weekend, while our wives are back at home and we’re out strafing the twisties by day and drinking microbrew beers in the evening.

Thank you to everyone who took the time to reply.

wordscape cheatgun mayhem 2 unblocked games