Right. Been wanting to ask this for a while, but now it's time. I'm a noob, been riding for five months or so, having taken the MSF course. I'm currently on a 2007 Yamaha Virago 250, which is actually a fine bike; I've learned a lot from it and am very happy with it (apart from some mechanical issues), and it's fast enough for my current needs and abilities. However, it's also not the bike I really want. When I ride it I feel like I'm doing it for educational purposes, not for pleasure, and when I'm next to my R1200GS-riding friends I have to crane my neck upwards to see them, and I hope they don't step on me. Also if there's any wind on the highway or bridges I feel like I'm gonna get flipped into the next lane, or the river. So I think it's time to start planning for the spring. I live in New York, and will be using the bike mainly for fun on the weekends--I commute on foot or subway, so any mid-week rides would be short and around town. Here are some of the things I do or don't want: More or less middleweight. I don't need massive power, and couldn't control it yet anyway, and I don't want to deal with an enormous bike. Right now I just walk my bike across the street, without turning it on, when I need a new parking spot, for example. Naked. I have no interest in off-road or dirt, and long touring isn't a big priority; I don't like the look of fairings; I'm not really interested in cruiser style. New(ish). I'm mechanically inept, and while I'm hoping and planning to learn more, I'd like a bike that will Just Work, and preferably can be taken in to the shop on warranty if it doesn't. European (rather than Japanese or American). Comfortable enough to go on longer rides, perhaps with a passenger. Not cross-country camping, but more than 45m. I haven't started test-riding yet (will probably wait until closer to the spring), but I'm trying to learn what I can beforehand to focus on the likely candidates. Some of the things I've been considering are: Triumph Bonneville + related. Pros: EXACTLY what I want a motorcycle to look like. I've straddled them and it just feels right. Supposedly relatively good for beginners. Comfy for passengers. Cons: Every single thing I've read has said that the Bonnies ride like 40-year-old bikes--not powerful enough, muddy handling, 80 pounds heavier than they should be. Would make me look like a hipster doofus. BMW F800R. Pros: Reviews pretty great across the board, in every way. Good for around town, longer trips, going fast, carrying a passenger, whatever. Reliable. Cons: Hate the asymmetrical headlights. Would make me look like a yuppie doofus. Ducati Monster 696 or 796. Pros: Love the look. Supposedly great performance. Cons: Virtually impossible to carry a passenger. Too sporty? Would make me look like a Eurotrash doofus. I'm open to any thoughts or suggestions at this point. Thanks all!