The Scolai

“Just a Good Guy…With a Few Bad Habits”

It’s All About The Ride

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“It’s all about the ride.” If you’ve ridden motorcycles for any length of time you have heard that statement, or you’ve said it yourself.  I came back from Ohio a day early when I heard a few of my friends were leaving. Smoochy is showing at a horse competition and, quite frankly, I missed her, Mrs. Scolai, The Princess and Mugsy. The ride down was a great time, 20 bikes, some guys packing their wives or girlfriends, most of us flying solo. We took the long way, riding a lot of two lane miles, stopping at a few cool bars and an American Legion Hall in Urbana where I saw my first “Blatz” beer since my Aunt Helen passed away.

It was fun and I am always up for that kind of rolling party. Today’s ride was different. Five guys, all riding solo, and kicking hard for the border. I have to give the great state of Ohio mad props, the absence of a punitive, regressive helmet law, propped up by a mole faced, canadian, communist, super nanny wanna be, makes “the ride” that much better.

A tight, five man formation. Leave the hotel and immediately hit the on ramp. Grab all the throttle you can hold and hang on. It’s overcast and occasionally rain drops smack you in the forehead. If there are a lot at any one time, you start to get an idea of what sand blasting feels like. Absent the rain, the wind is blasting you in a good way. On a bike you can feel minute changes in temperature, you smell diesel, the farms around you, the pavement, you name it. You are a part of your enviroment.

Maintaining your position, passing tractor trailers and slow moving cagers, you catch a glimpse of your speedometer and realize that for 10 plus miles, you have been riding at over 100 mph. You are ALIVE. This what you were made for, jamming down the road with a close group of friends, feeling the rain, the sun on your face, the wind over and through your hair (until you hit Michigan, thanks Jenny), throttle it back to a comfortable 80 mph, cruising speed for the highway. You fall into an easy rhythm and go with it.

You hit a stretch of construction with the accompanying heavy traffic. Throttle down some more and be on guard. Sure enough, here comes “Soccer Dad” in his spousally approved suburban assault vehicle and the requisite gaggle of nose pickers. Not watching, off in his own world, he is completely oblivious to the close call he is about to create. 3 bikes pass him, 2 are less than half a car length behind, without even a glance back “Soccer Dad” starts to change lanes. He is snapped out his waking dream as your hand comes off the throttle and punches his window.

You were seconds from becoming road kill, and this jerk off looks at you like it was your fault. Time, once again, to start carrying the ball bearings. Death cheated once more, you say a quick prayer of thanks to God for his traveling mercies, spike the throttle as the construction zone ends and put some distance between you and trouble.

Cross the border and stop once more for gas after making sure to throw a finger of protest at Lansing by riding a few extra miles in freedom, leaving the lid strapped to your saddle bag. An hour later, you hit your driveway and again praise God for his mercies and for bringing you home safely once more.

Yeah, It’s All About The Ride.



Written by thescolai

June 24, 2007 at 8:18 am

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