Quitting (Motorcycles)?

Discussion in 'Regional Forums' started by g7s6, May 2, 2011.

  1. 1worshipguy

    1worshipguy Adventurer

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Lumberton, NC
    If Kellymac was late...I sure am!!! What 4 years later?

    To the OP, I pray you've come to grips with your friend's death and your own future in riding. But for others out there, I just wanted to add my 2 cents.

    I've had two wrecks (not including several parking lot get-offs)...the first was a 17 yr old doing a U turn across 4 lanes right in front of me. I was in left lane, she in the right. Seeing her backing out of a parking space, I naturally slow down but when she started her U-turn across my lane...only two things saved me. 1) I had started slowing down and pondering an escape and 2) she just happened to look back into my lane mid-U-turn and slammed on her brakes. Those two things gave me just enough time to do an evasive swerve to the left. Her left front bumper hit my right pannier...but luckily not even hard enough for me to go down. If she hadn't stopped...I can only imagine what that T-bone would've looked like. (not to mention her leaving the scene AND lying to the insurance company...so no payout for the damage to my pannier).

    Second wreck was just a week and a half ago. Me and a buddy coming back from Daytona Bike Week decided to take a portion of the TET (look it up here on ADV). About 100 miles of dirt roads into this portion of the trip ("dirt" really means "sand" in South Georgia), the packed sand roads suddenly became 4-6 inches deep soft sand. I couldn't recover a tank slapper and got thrown into a sand bank. Thankfully "only" bruised ribs and a little road rash on my knee. Still hurts though. The bike's a GS Adventure...so only cosmetic damage...those things are beasts!

    Those two incidents, only a few months apart, and I can't help but think about my wife, 3 girls (5yrs, 3yrs, 6weeks), and my income being the only income. Yes, I'm covered in disability, and life insurance...but is that really a good argument? I can't even pick my girls up and hug them right now. The physical pain is just to much. It took almost 2 weeks for me to be able to sleep in the same bed as my wife (somewhat upright on the couch was my only option). And sneezing...o my goodness...it hurts almost as much as the wreck itself!

    As other posters have said, it just feels so selfish right now. So much so I was actually hoping the insurance would total the bike so I wouldn't have to make an excuse for selling it.

    Don't get me wrong. It is in my blood. Been riding for almost 20 years. Riding is my stress relief. It is my only real hobby. As someone once said, "If I have to explain it, you wouldn't understand." But is it worth it for me? I'm just not sure yet.

    A Jeep sounds pretty enticing right now. Maybe a camper. Something I can do with the family. I know I'd miss it. I know I'd get back to it someday. But I might be done for a season. I really can't say for sure yet.
    #41
  2. Old Blue

    Old Blue Shallow waterman

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    Shit! Heal well and fast!
    #42
  3. TUCKERS

    TUCKERS the famous james

    Joined:
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    I think the connotation 'quitting' seems alien to most guys.....

    Why not say 'decided not to ride anymore'
    #43
  4. Apxgrndr

    Apxgrndr In the snow

    Joined:
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    Up here
    I just sold my GS! With two small kids I'm just not riding long trips anymore.

    I am also struggling with weather I should ride and get my kids involved in it or not.

    I will probably take the summer and just mountain bike, see how much I miss it.
    #44
  5. Manymotos

    Manymotos Adventurer

    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2006
    Oddometer:
    60
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    Montgomery, Alabama
    Sorry to hear of your friends accident. You always have the opportunity to NOT ride. Let me tell you about my experience.

    I started riding at 13 years old. Got on the street when I was 17. When I was 23 we had our first of two children, my daughter. One and a half years later we had our son. Looking at the two of them I decided I needed to stop riding because these children had to be raised and motorcycles made the responsibility of raising them risky. If I had a bad accident I might not be able to raise them.

    As my children grew my son asked me about the pictures around the house of motorcycles as well as a few hare scrambles and trials trophies that I had won when I was younger. He asked numerous times if he could have a motorcycle and I always nipped the question in the bud. I told him he didn't need to ride a motorcycle because they were too dangerous.

    At 20 years of age, driving back to college from a weekend at home my son was involved in an automobile accident that killed him. Two weeks later I had my first motorcycle since the children were born. I won't stop again unless I physically can't get on one.

    You can't totally control what is going on around you! You can be more in tune with your situational awareness and hopefully it will help keep you out of the way of trouble although you'll never be totally safe.

    Today my only regret is that I didn't keep riding after the children were born and introduce both of them to motorcycling. I think my son would have truly enjoyed it but I never gave him the opportunity.

    So, stay alert, be careful, anticipate poor drivers, ride your motorcycle and enjoy the life you have.
    #45
  6. klx250sfguy

    klx250sfguy Long timer

    Joined:
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    1,165
    Manymotos, very sorry to hear about the loss of your son. I read through all of these posts today, lots of heart ache here.

    I have been riding over 20 years. Two nights ago I had a very close call. Someone roared out of a lane way just as I was passing by. The person was either wasted or angry or stealing the car (I'm only guessing) and was driving without any regard for others. Once the car hit pavement (the lane way was a dirt road), I could hear tires screeching and the engine racing. I pulled into a corner gas station to get out of the way, praying the crazed driver wouldn't run me over. I watched as the car passed me. The car crossed the yellow line and made an illegal left turn (through a red light). The guy/ girl (couldn't tell because of tinted windows) was driving like he/she was being chased by the police. I'm not lying when I say the incident shook me.

    Maybe I'm lucky, but I've never lost a close friend to riding. And in all my years on two wheels, I've only had one get off (I hit some sand in a turn). I have three kids and a wife who supports me in everything I do. I have a good job, just finished a Masters degree, and I enjoy good health. Myself and two others took a long ride last weekend (long for me, about 400 kms). We rode a lot of coastal roads. Lots of curves, beautiful scenery. But I really didn't enjoy the ride. With some of the turns through wooded areas I imagined an oncoming vehicle crossing the line. I thought about how one of the guys I was riding with was new to riding (licensed in the past year) yet he had as his first bike an anniversary edition Harley (big bike). I had thoughts of him losing control, even though he seemed a good rider. I wondered what would happen to me if he crashed in front of me. So many thoughts ran through my head on that ride. I didn't enjoy it.

    I am thinking of taking a break from riding. I have an old Miata I picked up years ago. I often find more pleasure in that than my bike. And with the Miata my wife or one of our kids can come along. Everyone loves the Miata. No one in my family rides with me, not anymore (I felt it immensely selfish to risk their lives doing something I enjoyed). I don't judge others that take their wives or kids as passengers, it just didn't sit well with me.

    If I ever get another bike, I think I might go strictly dirt.

    Thanks for listening. Best wishes to everyone.
    #46
  7. bbtech

    bbtech Computer Guru

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    Location:
    Illinois just outside St Louis
    Sorry for the loss , I can only imagine!

    I bought a Tiger 800xc in early 2012 and there were a few close calls that really shook me up to the point I sold my Tiger. The bug wouldn't go away and so I got something a little less involved for me...a KLR650. In late 2012 I was t-boned by someone who ran a stop sign. My gear and crash bars really took the worst of it but it took me many months to recover physically but after a year or so I knew I had to get back on the steel horse. I have owned and ridden a lot of bikes in the past but the one I really regretted selling was my 2012 Tiger. This past April I finally pulled the trigger on a 2013 Tiger 800XC and I haven't looked back since. I have 3 kids, 21, 12 and 4 but I am also north of 40 and realize life is about the experiences we have and not what we accumulate. I would say that I am far more conscientious about my riding and try to be more aware of my surroundings. Good Luck!
    #47
  8. windblown101

    windblown101 Long timer

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    I won't go into the details of my own experiences because they don't really matter.

    Motorcycling is a high risk activity. Choose to participate or don't. It's that simple. Good luck regardless of what you choose. Losing friends or family is always a tough go.
    #48
  9. theycallmetrinity

    theycallmetrinity Adventurer

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    Apr 2, 2014
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    Los Angeles
    Not sure if this post still alive but in case anyone reading this here are my 2 cents on the subject.

    First of all OP sorry about the loss of your friend. 3 weeks ago my best friend was hit by a teenage girl in a car because she was txting. He died in the hospital hours later leaving behind a wife and 3 small children. I can relate to your pain.

    I ve been in 2 accidents one minor the 2nd I almost kicked the bucket. After the 2nd accident the bike was totaled (guy in a car t boned me at 50 mph). I didnt ride for a year and a half, told my self never will. As far as I remember I was done with biking.
    Then about 8 months ago I bought a bike. We all riders here so you know the answer why, I missed the feeling of riding. I decided to be more careful, ride safer, get better gear, get a slower bike it will all be ok. It wasn't. I could not get over the fear of someone is going to hit me again. I realized while riding I stress more about my safety then enjoying the ride. I had to face the reality that riding a motorcycle is not as fun as it used to be.

    I'm in the process of selling the bike, gear as we speak. I decided to look for other ways to have my adrenalin rush.

    My point is if you love something so much, if that activity brings you so much joy that you're willing to die or seriously injure yourself for by all means do it. I have surfer friends who told me they rather get eaten by a shark than give up surfing. For them the passion or the joy for surfing is stronger than realizing the risk.
    If you lose your passion and the fun yet still doing something dangerous I call it plain stupid. This was my case! As painful as it may be I must face reality and adjust. There is no shame to admit when things change inside of you. Dont ever fall for the ride hard live short we all Steve McQueen BS. That's all marketing slogan to sell more bikes.

    And to those people who say well I rather die than not ride. Does anyone ever considered the situation where you dont die from an accident but become paralyzed where you cant even wipe your own ass? What then?..will it be worth it?

    I always loved bikes and always will but the desire to live my life healthy and as long as possible is stronger therefor I can enjoy other thrills life can offer other than motorcycles.
    #49
  10. OnTheWay

    OnTheWay Long timer

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    Great write up,
    Life is not for yourself, you have family behind.
    Take care of yourself, your wife, and kids. :D:D:D
    #50