The post I hoped I would never write

JesseeS

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Well ladies and gentlemen,

It’s quite difficult for me to write this as it’s been a mostly easy decision given what’s at stake, but weighs on me a bit. I’ve decided to give up road riding, at least for the foreseeable future. After seeing it get worse and worse for us over the years, this past month did it for me. We had a break in the cold so I took the monkey out for a bit, and just saw all the nutcases cross over in my lane or clearly on their phone. I came home from my ride, and my little girl (who just turned one) ran up to me with the biggest smile and gave me my welcome back hug and kiss. Then, there were 2 separate motorcycle deaths, both less than a half mile from my house, in different spots I ride. That sealed the deal for me. If I die on my own then what can I do, but if I don’t get to see my little girls face anymore because of some idiot, well I’m taking as much of that out of the equation as I can. Positive notes are yes, I am still finishing the bike, with the best quality pieces I can make or buy, and it will be a road weapon. It just may take longer to complete than what I was aiming for. When it is ready to ride, i will be out and back before all the blue hairs have finished their 2nd cup of coffee. (Oops, I’m in mixed company ;)). Also, I need to be on 2 wheels. I just need it. So after a discussion with my wife, I will be picking up a dirtbike. I’ve owned a few over the years and have been wanting another for a while anyways. Trailering it to the trails, where if I mess myself up it’s on me. So I will say you guys may see updates on that as well. I’m still going to be very active here, but I believe I’m making the right decision.
 
I understand your decision
But stay in touch, hell Babes and bikes or just a joke' technical advice etc. we can always use another set of eyes or a twisted sense of humor
See you soon :cheers:
Mikey
 
I'm blessed with a lot of low traffic rural roads to ride. The deer weed out many of the "don't pay attention drivers" round these parts. :yikes:
I (mostly) quit street riding when the kids were young for a lot of reasons. Your choice is understandable.
Had a pull out in front of me yesterday in town. Saw him, I was hard on madness' good brakes, rear even got a little loose. When the guy did finally see me, he pulled off to the side as a mea culpa. Life goes on, mostly. I ocasionally get stuck riding in larger cities, but don't much like it.
 
I can certainly understand your sentiments, I also stepped away from motorcycles when my kids were little. My wife didn’t work and I was the sole source of income for a growing family. I couldn’t afford to even miss a few weeks of work. Like many of us , I picked it up again when my kids were grown, by then I was in my late 40’s.
I can also relate to your concerns about city traffic, I used to commute daily on my bike after I took up riding again and I had my fair share of rush hour close calls, they suck to put it mildly.
When we retired, we bought a house on the edge of town, I was so happy that I could ride through farm land and open desert in just about any direction. I have been stunned at the pace of development near me. I have to really work to avoid dense city traffic. Ah well……..best of luck to you and stay in touch! 😉
 
Well ladies and gentlemen,

It’s quite difficult for me to write this as it’s been a mostly easy decision given what’s at stake, but weighs on me a bit. I’ve decided to give up road riding, at least for the foreseeable future. After seeing it get worse and worse for us over the years, this past month did it for me. We had a break in the cold so I took the monkey out for a bit, and just saw all the nutcases cross over in my lane or clearly on their phone. I came home from my ride, and my little girl (who just turned one) ran up to me with the biggest smile and gave me my welcome back hug and kiss. Then, there were 2 separate motorcycle deaths, both less than a half mile from my house, in different spots I ride. That sealed the deal for me. If I die on my own then what can I do, but if I don’t get to see my little girls face anymore because of some idiot, well I’m taking as much of that out of the equation as I can. Positive notes are yes, I am still finishing the bike, with the best quality pieces I can make or buy, and it will be a road weapon. It just may take longer to complete than what I was aiming for. When it is ready to ride, i will be out and back before all the blue hairs have finished their 2nd cup of coffee. (Oops, I’m in mixed company ;)). Also, I need to be on 2 wheels. I just need it. So after a discussion with my wife, I will be picking up a dirtbike. I’ve owned a few over the years and have been wanting another for a while anyways. Trailering it to the trails, where if I mess myself up it’s on me. So I will say you guys may see updates on that as well. I’m still going to be very active here, but I believe I’m making the right decision.
Hi @JesseeS

Thats a big and understandable decision.
My long time biking mate gave up the road after many many UK and European tours with me; his wife had their first child and the deal was done.
Sadly brought my touring days to an end also.

He bought a Kawasaki dirt bike stink wheeler; so I bought a Honda XR400R with HRC kit (brilliant bit of kit. way better than my ability).
We did a few Welsh weekend off road trails over two years, and enjoyed the experience; but I always missed the thrill of starting a proper road 'tour'.
He had a few off road crashes, which put him in hospital; and that put me off the dirt (you try carrying a 16 stone inert body, screaming in pain, three miles down a dirt track to a waiting medical helicopter. The two paramedics needed ressus after this!).
More kids came his way and our biking together came to a natural end. I also realised the dirt was not my natural habitat.

Im happiest twiddling the spanners and putt-putting around our country lanes. so thats where I will be.

Looking forward to your build continuing; and very impressed with your work so far.

Ads.:devil:
 
Look at your little girl (they are the greatest gift) and find something you can share with her and maybe her siblings later. You will not regret your decision. In 15 or 20 years there will still be XS650s or CB750s or KZ650s, what ever yanks your crank in 15 or 20 years. I did the same in the mid 90s when my adopted daughters taught me what was important in life.
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Look at your little girl (they are the greatest gift) and find something you can share with her and maybe her siblings later. You will not regret your decision. In 15 or 20 years there will still be XS650s or CB750s or KZ650s, what ever yanks your crank in 15 or 20 years. I did the same in the mid 90s when my adopted daughters taught me what was important in life.View attachment 230828
 
I also completely understand (and applaud) your decision. After having raced oval tracks and road courses earlier on, I started riding late in life after the boys had grown up and have the good fortune to be able to ride solely in the countryside. The few times that I have ridden "in town" convinced me that there was no upside to that, given that "town" is where the oblivious drivers are. Doin' it in the dirt ain't a bad idea, as long as its done with due prudence. Ride on!
 
It's not as bad here in OK as it was in WA, but there is a reason I have a 130db horn on my bike. And luckily I go to work early and miss the heavy traffic both ways. I do ride an XR200 in the dirt, but I'm slow and worst I get is a low speed fall over. I've had faster dirtbikes, ktm 250sxf and rm250, but I'm not even hitting the limits of the old XR.

Lately I'm worried about all the cars with "autopilot". Too many people already put their full trust in it and don't pay attention. The 3 motorcyclists that have died being rear ended on the highway by a tesla on autopilot are a terrible proof that these idiots pay zero attention.

Dirt is fun, but kind of a pain when you have to load up and go to a riding area. But it's still a risk, even with as slow as I tend to be.
 
I went through this same thing when my little guy was born. Shortly before I also lost my best friend in a bike accident. Between the two life changing events I decided to get off two wheels and sold both my Harleys about a month before my son was born. I had always had bike since I was 19 (now 47), so I was having serious withdrawl from going without. About 6 months later I bought my first XS though. It was literally laying on its side in my buddy's shed, so I bought it from him for $600. More than anything it gave me a project to focus on in the shop and scratched that itch a little. That first XS project lasted over 3 years, and never rode it before I sold it... LOL. Sinse then I have started riding a bit more, but nowhere on a regular basis. But I have started accumulating a stable of bikes. I've got my reliable rider '02 HD, my '75 XS is mostly finished sans a little tuning work, and now my '77XS project bike that I am hoping to finish off this winter. My son is almost 12 now, and I still have those same worries that you are experiencing. My riding time just consists of the occasional commute to work and sunny Sunday afternoon rides. Working on bikes fills my cup though, and as my son gets older I hope to continue to ride more. Unfortunately my son does not share the same obsession with motorcycles that I do. He's just happy having a hammer, screwdriver and block of wood to destroy while I work away in the shop.
 
I support your choice. To bad you feel you have to make an all or none decision. Just like Willis, I found an XS650 in someone's shed and couldn't resist it.
Being a DIYer and with 25 years of keeping outboard motors running, I wanted a project.

I fell in love with the XS650 around the time HAPPY DAYS was on in the mid-70's. I thought then and still now it is the coolest looking thing I ever laid eyes on.
My mother was strongly anti-motorcycle when it came to her sons. In 1980, I got $1500 together and was going to buy an XS650. My parents intervened. Out of respect I gave it up. Back when I was a college student, I didn't even have the money for a reliable car, so my risk profile was huge.

I waited until my kids were grown and my parents were long gone before riding. IMHO when you don't use a MC for transportation you lower your risk exposure. In the last 18 months I put 3600 miles on my 81' Special. All rides were joy rides on country roads. No riding when the school buses are on the road or during rush hour. My longest round trip has been maybe 25 miles. I hope to continue this as long as I can.
 
I applaud your decision. hard to make a selfless decision like this. Look at your children and know that, this is, the right decision at this point in time. plenty of years in the future to get back into bikes if your still inclined to at a later date.

I look back at some choices i made and realize the choice made at the time, although overall not bad, meant i missed moments shared that could last a lifetime, and for what.
 
Jesse, I also support your decision, because its your decision, and no one else's. Dirt bikes can bite hard too though, so be careful and take it easy. As I'm writing this I've still got this f'ing cast on my right ankle due to my lack of attention for just a few seconds, and that accident was only about a month after the closest I've come to getting smoked on a motorcycle, by a truck coming at me in my lane around a left hand sweeper country road. Shit happens quickly. Have fun with your family :):):)
 
I believe that many riders are also at fault because of power, speed and just the outright adrenaline rush a bike gives you. Lack of driver and rider education contributes as well. I agree that there are way too many distractions available to drivers these days. Everyone’s phone has a GPS and nobody can convince me that technology installed into a phone couldn’t disable it when it senses speeds above a jog.
 
I believe that many riders are also at fault because of power, speed and just the outright adrenaline rush a bike gives you. Lack of driver and rider education contributes as well. I agree that there are way too many distractions available to drivers these days. Everyone’s phone has a GPS and nobody can convince me that technology installed into a phone couldn’t disable it when it senses speeds above a jog.
I believe you're right. It seems like most M/C fatal accidents involve younger riders on sport bikes. Heaven knows I was a complete idiot when young. Now I've improved to imbecile.
 
I understand, I was for many years , an instructor of MC riding with the Ottawa safety Council , had road accidents including being broadsided at an intersection, was lucky for many many years . I loved the teaching , but over the years , learned of students I had that have been in serious accidents…and that was starting to give me doubts on my feelings of invincibility…
I moved to the far north , and ran dirt bikes and was gone from here for a few years, but upon my return , I took up road riding again .
It scared me. In the few years I had been away from this world, the amount of inattentive and frankly aggressive drivers ( who seemed to lack even basic road skills) increased to the point where I sold my Ducati and went back to trail riding
Now, with two young daughters, I’m thinking very carefully about my return to the street . I have a new to me XS that I’m preparing, but, as I live in a rural area, it’s more desert sled build than cafe like my past ones
I’m equipping it with extra lights, and a good horn and will be the hi viz vest guy , but still, I don’t feel like I used to. I’m nervous , but I love riding . It’s a pull, but a fear all the same . Part of it i know is my former profession as a medic, and I did my share of ditch medicine on downed riders.

I agree , it’s a hard call. Is the juice worth the squeeze ? Well. I’ll see…
 
I understand, I was for many years , an instructor of MC riding with the Ottawa safety Council , had road accidents including being broadsided at an intersection, was lucky for many many years . I loved the teaching , but over the years , learned of students I had that have been in serious accidents…and that was starting to give me doubts on my feelings of invincibility…
I moved to the far north , and ran dirt bikes and was gone from here for a few years, but upon my return , I took up road riding again .
It scared me. In the few years I had been away from this world, the amount of inattentive and frankly aggressive drivers ( who seemed to lack even basic road skills) increased to the point where I sold my Ducati and went back to trail riding
Now, with two young daughters, I’m thinking very carefully about my return to the street . I have a new to me XS that I’m preparing, but, as I live in a rural area, it’s more desert sled build than cafe like my past ones
I’m equipping it with extra lights, and a good horn and will be the hi viz vest guy , but still, I don’t feel like I used to. I’m nervous , but I love riding . It’s a pull, but a fear all the same . Part of it i know is my former profession as a medic, and I did my share of ditch medicine on downed riders.

I agree , it’s a hard call. Is the juice worth the squeeze ? Well. I’ll see…
I live in a rural area and seldom venture into the city or the suburbs. When I do a road trip, I try to make sure when I pass through a city or suburb, it's not during rush hour. It's not fool proof, but I'll take those odds.
 
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