Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Does Riding Your Own Make You a Better Passenger

When I first started riding on the back of Dave's bike he always told me what a good passenger I was. He said he usually forgot I was on the back, which sometimes was apparent by the way he rode. So when I first started learning to ride my own I wondered about how that would affect me as a passenger. At first I thought it was making me a better passenger. I started understanding more why he did some of the things he did. I started to anticipate certain situations, and it especially helped when riding in a group because I became aware of possible hazards that I could point out to riders behind us.
Now I've been riding my own for about a year and a half, and have only ridden on back with Dave a handful of times. Saturday we went out for a short and sweet ride with a couple who we have recently become friends with, thanks to the friendship of our two boys. I wasn't feeling very good, but I still wanted to go out, so I decided I would ride with Dave. I started realizing that maybe riding my own didn't make me such a good passenger. Once you are able to be in control of something, it's kind of hard to give that up. I found myself trying to help Dave control the bike, which I'm sure made things difficult for him. I kept telling myself to relax and go with it, just like I had done for so long all those times I had ridden with him, but it was really hard.
I don't know if anyone else has this problem, or if it's just another area in my life where I'm over thinking things. But in my conclusion, in my case, I feel like riding my own has made me a worse passenger. With that being said, I guess it's just something I'll have to deal with on those rare occasions when I ride on the back, and remember that being in control is one of the things I love about riding my own. If I have to choose between being a good passenger and a good operator, I think the obvious choice is being a good operator.

13 comments:

Mr. Motorcycle said...

Good post. Great thought provoking shit. I don't know the answer, but I'm going to guess for most people, they would find themselves in the same situation as you.

Cameraman1024 said...

I will have to show this to my wife. She has been wanting to take lessons and get her own bike. Though she would still ride with me when we do our long hauls. This will give us something to think about.

Arizona Harley Dude said...

I CAN ride in the car with someone else driving, but I don't like to and I leave imprints on the floorboard. Does that make me a bad passenger? Some think so and I'm good with that. Better to spend a little more on the gas and just ride yourself. Not a bad passenger, just a better rider.

FLHX_Dave said...

"Does riding your won make you a better passenger?".....no

Heh, still love having you ride bitch though...not that your a bitch or anything...nope

Why is my word verification; "PALIN"

FLHX_Dave said...

I do know how to spell "one" by the way.

FLHX_Dave said...

oh shit...."own" I meant....geez

IowaHarleyGirl (Stephanie) said...

I think it would be difficult to give up the control once you've had it. Thanks for sharing your thoughts on the subject.

Canajun said...

I don't know that there's a hard and fast rule. My wife was always an excellent passenger, both before and after she started riding her own, so I guess it's a personal thing.

What would be more interesting I think is whether having experience carrying a passenger made you a better passenger yourself.

mq01 said...

great post! a few yrs ago jumping on a bike 2up, i had a new date ask me sweetly if i could handle being a passenger again. it was a nice question, and a good one. i smiled and said no prob. i was wrong, kinda. long story short, i was not completely comfy til i took my eyes off the road ahead and just enjoyed the scenery.

since then ive realized it depends on many factors, but in my case its mostly me. there are men i can lean into and just enjoy the ride. but more often than not im SOOO aware of the surroundings that i might be a nuisance. once i notice if i think im being bad, i force myself to relax and enjoy the side landscape, and WONT look thru the windshield. have you tried that?

motoroz said...

You raise a good question. My wife never liked riding her own - that is why we sold it, but she loves riding with me. Friends who's wives ride their own tell me the wives do not like riding on the back.

mrs rc said...

I'm going to agree with Mr M that most people would agree with you on some level. I know that after 10K miles in the saddle of my Super Glide, I feel like I am one with the bike...and on the back of Jay's Low Rider I am figity and uncomfortable. Although I very much enjoy the SHORT rides that we take together (like our sunset ride on our anniversary to the small town where we got married to get ice cream), I'd much prefer to ride my own.

Willy D said...

I think the real question should be “Does riding bitch make you a Better Bitch?”
Well does it?

Anonymous said...

Before I rode my own, like you, I was told what a great passenger I was. I had an accident 3 months into my riding experience. I wasn't afraid to get back on (after broken bones healed)and ride my own, but very nervous riding behind my husband after my accident. I think you are right, it is a control thing.