Show us your Funnies! We’ll select the best and publish in USRiderNews!
In honor of the 70th anniversary of Daytona’s Bike Week we dug this photo out of our archives. It was taken at the Last Resort Bar in Port Orange… you remember it’s where Aileen Wuornos, (the only female serial killer ever executed) used to hang out when she was in town.
While there’s nothing funny about women who kill men for pleasure and that’s not Aileen in the photo, there has to be a few funny captions out there just waiting to win our caption contest of this month. Put your comments on this page or on our Facebook Page.
You know what they say about “good intentions” right? There’s a road paved to you-know-where with them, and sometimes in this business I feel like I’m headed there in the express lane with the throttle wide open.
Since the schedule won’t cooperate, I’m writing this a few hours before leaving for the annual spring motorcycle migration. I fully expect this year’s event to be well attended, despite the lingering economic uncertainty.
I believe most of you are as tired of winter as I am. Hopefully the lower hotel/motel rates (than in years past) should offset the higher gasoline prices and lure you down to spend a few days basking in the early spring Florida sunshine.
For some of you that will mean passing through my home state of Georgia. If you take I-75 or I-95, I apologize for the discrimination you will likely experience on the ride through.
Normally Georgia is considered motorcycle friendly.
However, we have pimped out our troopers to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) for a measly $70,000.
Let’s put this into perspective. For less than the cost of two patrol cars and a motorcycle, the Georgia Highway Patrol allowed itself to be hired out to perform discriminatory traffic profiling, under the guise of “safety checkpoints.”
In their press release the GSP said they were focusing on high speed motorcycles and reckless riding and would be checking for non-DOT approved helmets, valid tags and motorcycle endorsements.
I’m all for safety but how does a check point deter high speed motorcycle riders. And when did an improper tag become unsafe?
What’s worse is the GSP spokesperson had the audacity to claim the stop should only take about a minute for the rider who has all the proper paperwork.
I don’t know about you but it takes me more than a minute to stop, get off the bike, take off my helmet and gloves and get my wallet, find my insurance card and license and then suit back up.
The brain trust who wrote that press release obviously never rode a motorcycle.
What chaps my ass the most isn’t the “safety spin” or “it’s not really an inconvenience” spin the Georgia State Patrol is putting on this. What chaps me the most is how eager they are to participate in blatant discrimination for a little overtime pay.
Is there nobody in a position of authority in the State Patrol that has the moral turpitude to stand up and say, “This is wrong and we should not participate in it, regardless of how much money the Federal Government is throwing at us.
Not to mention these checkpoints will be conducted on interstate weigh stations. The same brain trust who wrote the GSP press release must have thought it would be a good idea to mix motorcycles and 18 wheelers.
I don’t know about your state, but Georgia has made some deep cuts to the State Patrol budget. I’ve got a good source inside the department who told me that troopers have been instructed to stay in one spot during the bulk of their shift and not drive any more than they absolutely have to.
As a former law enforcement officer I can tell you that sitting in one spot for a long period of time makes for a boring shift. I can’t really blame them for filling their time with checkpoints, but I do blame them for participating in “discriminatory” checkpoints.
In a perfect world individual State Patrol officers would step up and complain about this type of enforcement and refuse to condone it.
In this world we’ll have to rely on legislation that has been introduced by Rep. Jim Sensenbrenner (R-Wis.) to block the Department of Transportation (who funds NHTSA) from giving grants that target motorcycles only.
Not only would it stop the Georgia checkpoints it would also stop the checkpoints that New York State has been doing. (corrected 03-04-2011 – The New York checkpoints are State funded, not with NHTSA grants.)
I’m trying my best not to Chicken Little this issue and cry “foul” at every perceived injustice to motorcyclists, so if there’s someone out there who can justify these checkpoints, I’d love to hear your argument for their validity.
Until next month, ride safe and always take the road less traveled.
Ok..so there’s no motorcycle in this picture. But, we’ve all been to those “campground” style field rallies where the action is mostly “off” the bike. So, as we gear up for spring, we thought it appropriate we pick this picture for our Caption of the Month contest. Place your guess here, or on our Facebook Fan Page.
Hey Abdul-la..that car keeps following us….do you think they’re trying to steal little bo peep? Speed up..!
This isn’t a new picture and it’s probably been around the block a few times..(like that sheep) but we know our readers can put a whole new spin on the funny captions. Remember, we publish the funniest ones in the magazine! You could be famous..!
Comment here or on our Facebook page!
By Scott Cochran, Editor
I was tempted to dig through the morgue where we keep our back issues to see how many times I’ve written an editorial on helmets.
But then I realized this rant isn’t about helmets, it’s more about pushing back against the “nanny state” that is attacking our personal liberties with legislation designed “for our own good.”
At least that’s the position of the National Transportation Safety Board is taking.
Calling for all 50 states to enact mandatory helmet requirements for motorcycles, Christopher Hart, Vice Chairman of the NTSB (A Federal agency with little or no Congressional oversight) said that motorcycle fatalities have doubled, while total traffic deaths have declined, and that riding a motorcycle without a helmet is a “public health issue.”
I’m throwing a BS flag on that one Mr. Hart.
There’s nothing inherently dangerous to the non-riding public if a motorcyclist opts not to wear protective gear. It’s not contagious or likely to cause innocent bystanders harm.
However, let me state unequivocally that if you choose to ride without a helmet or protective gear, you are not exercising good common sense.
But, for full disclosure, there have been times when yours truly has ridden without a helmet. I don’t make it a habit, but it happens.
So, it’s not the wearing of the helmet that I oppose, it’s our Federal government (which represents us) using its power to force individual states to usurp personal freedoms, and use taxpayer (our money) funds to accomplish the agenda.
The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety claims the public pays when motorcyclists go down without helmets. “Only slightly more than half of motorcycle crash victims have private health insurance coverage. For patients without private insurance, a majority of medical costs are paid by the government.”
With the passage of Obama Care, everyone will be covered, but premiums of non-riders will increase to cover motorcycle accident victims.
Can you see the logical conclusion to this agenda?
If your activity causes my health insurance premiums to increase, and the government subsidizes health insurance, then it becomes a “public health issue” and government has an obligation to regulate it, or ban it outright.
What disturbs me the most is not what the NTSB is doing, but the absence of any outrage among civil libertarians over this.
Society, (aka The Government) does not own my body. It does not own my thoughts nor what I generate from my thoughts and actions.
As an adult I am (and rightly so) free to engage in various forms of self-destructive behavior.
I can smoke or drink alcohol to excess. I can eat whatever I want as much as I can afford and refuse to exercise. I do not have to visit a doctor or a dentist. My teeth can rot out and my body fall apart if I so choose.
I can ride horses and climb mountains without the first piece of safety gear. I can operate a chain saw without a minute of safety instruction. I can go for a swim in any river or ocean without having to wear a flotation device, and I don’t have to know how to swim.
I can have casual sex with as many strangers as I like (and risk contracting AIDS) without having to wear protection.
All of these activities are inherently dangerous to my personal health, so what’s different about riding a motorcycle without a helmet?
Not much, if you think about it.
The sad fact is that If we remain complacent, and do not defend personal liberty, no matter if it affects us or not, most of what active, fun loving adults enjoy will be banned as “too dangerous” by some new alphabet nanny agency. Most likely the National Organization for Boosting Life Expectancy or NOBLE in gov speak.
One day future generations will look back and wonder how the world survived with idiots smoking in public, sweet tea, fried food and motorcycle riders who rode without ballistic armor, airbags and full face helmets.
Sadly, they’ll never know what they missed.
Ride safe and always take the road less traveled.
There’s no doubt that safety is at the top of the list for some motorcyclists, that why this family always wears helmets…except jr, who couldn’t find one narrow enough…. In this frigid winter we thought it would be nice to spend a little time coming up with a funny caption for this photo. Enter here, or on our FACEBOOK page
While Prince William may be engaged, he’s not going to be giving up the motorcycle lifestyle anytime soon, according to the Telegraph. the pair are said to be planning another epic motorcycle odyssey similar to the 2009 trip in Africa where the pair covered 1000 miles of back country in eight days.
Brother Harry, an avid motorcyclist is often seen(on the left) sporting around on his black Triumph, and once even rode on the back of a Ducati superbike with GP winner Randy Mamol for several 100+ laps around a British racetrack.
A group of motorcycle owners in the Quebec province of Canada are outraged after it was discovered that the province’s automobile insurance board spent taxpayer money and hired a private firm to essentially spy on them earlier this year. The insurance board denied that what it was doing was “spying.”
In the Globe and Mail the group said, “There was a lot of anger and we knew protest groups were being formed,” said a spokeswoman for the automobile insurance board, Audrey Chaput. “We granted a contract to the firm National to go out and listen to what the groups were saying and to feel the pulse of the movement.” The complete story is here
By Scott Cochran, Editor
This will, in all probability, be the most unpopular editorial I have written in the ten years of puking out ink in this space.
I don’t know any other way to say it, but I’m throwing a BS flag on the popular slogan, “Loud Pipes Save Lives.”
Normally I don’t make it my business to debunk pithy helmet stickers. There are plenty out there that are as suspect as the Loud Pipes sticker, but most of them are assumed to be tongue in cheek and not taken seriously.
Some of my favorite stickers are “For a small town this sure has a lot of assholes” and “If I don’t remember…it didn’t happen!” The one I’ve used in conversation recently is, “Who Lit The Fuse On Your Tampon?” And one that is applicable here, “I have the right to remain silent but not the ability.”
But, back on loud pipes.
My first real “road” bike was previously owned. The original owner had removed the stock exhaust and replaced it with “straight” pipes.
I remember how much I loved the sound of that bike. I especially enjoyed riding through the concrete canyons of metro areas late at night and blipping the throttle to hear the thunder echo through the alleyways and empty parking garages.
My current bike has aftermarket pipes which are louder than stock, but not obnoxiously so. The note is deeper and more throaty but still louder.
But, I’ve never believed those loud pipes have saved my life, or caused anything other than admiration at the sound, or irritation at the noise, depending on the person’s viewpoint.
Exhaust noise travels backwards. Unless you’re riding 3 mph and blipping the throttle constantly, there’s little chance anyone in front of you will hear your “loud pipes.”
True enough some drivers will turn their head when you ride by and you may have convinced yourself that you “got their attention” with your loud pipes but as any baseball outfielder will attest, you see the ball heading your way before you hear the crack of the bat.
You would do much better to invest in the loudest train horn you can find to alert inattentive drivers who may turn or pull out in front of you.
“OK Cochran, but what about on the interstate when I’m riding alongside some soccer mom talking on the cell phone and yelling at her kids in the back? She hears my pipes and it keeps her from pulling into my lane!”
Personally I never ride along beside anyone on the interstate. I’m usually riding slightly faster than the flow, but I still say a extremely loud horn is more effective, but arguably not as cool.
Now I know many of you will disagree with me, and that’s OK. I’ve been on the politically incorrect side of the fence before and I’m sure I’ll be there again.
Don’t misunderstand me, I like my exhaust to be louder than stock. California’s recent legislation which will make it illegal to have anything on your new bike other than stock exhaust, really chaps my ass. I think it’s a slippery slope and one that begins to erode the guarantees of the First Amendment.
But my point is that loud pipes are not a “safety” issue and we, as a community and as voters, shouldn’t try to frame our arguments against noise legislation around that. Loud pipes are an expression, just as pithy helmet stickers and “The Bitch Fell Off” t-shirts.
Plus the EPA sticker on most new bikes is placed in obscure locations, not easily read by law enforcement and in some cases only viewable by removing plastic or chrome parts. This will undoubtedly result in subjective enforcement until more legislation is passed to standardize placement of the EPA stamps.
Recently Dublin Georgia (30 miles from my office) enacted an ordinance which bans “saggy pants” and if you get caught with your pants 3 inches below your hips you’ll get slapped with a $200 fine. Not many motorcyclists worry about getting pinched on this one but, I’m sure that the majority of you reading this editorial probably agree with that ordinance because you dislike seeing urban gang-bangers walking around the mall with their pants half to their knees and their boxers hiked up over their shirts.
But, the truth is, what is offensive to some of us is a form of expression, rebellion or a statement of individuality to others.
I think it’s juvenile to wear your pants half down to your knees but there are just as many people who believe its juvenile to ride a motorcycle that’s louder than a fire truck and those same people are convinced that social nirvana is reached by outlawing anything that offends either their eyes or their ears.
I’m not proposing we all replace our aftermarket pipes with factory silencers, but if we’re going to win this one we’d better get the non-riding public on our side.
Since I don’t see that happening any time soon, I’ll enjoy my aftermarket exhaust as long as possible.
Oh, and my new favorite sticker? “Yes it’s loud, but you’re ugly and you don’t hear me suggesting you get plastic surgery do you?
Ride Safe, and always take the road less traveled.