Published on May 4th, 2016 | by Boris


Each time I hear or read the mealy-mouthed sign-off ‘Ride safe!’ my glands start to ache and I am seized by a powerful desire to break things.

What is that pathetic ‘Ride safe!’ whine about? Why has it become so ubiquitous among us? How is it we sink further into such shameful beigeness with each passing year?

All that wishing such a thing on a rider does is propagate a mindset of fear, which only serves to demonstrate how very effective the relentless government propaganda has been. Many of us have now accepted fear as the over-arching paradigm of our lives, and crave safety like junkies crave smack.

Big success for Boss Government.

After all, it is much easier to rule fearful and ignorant slaves who have come to believe everything their owners tell them without question. Ruling people who are not governed by fear is much harder.

This obsession (and that is exactly what it is) for being safe everywhere all the time has become the be all and end all. It’s become the only consideration anyone must have before any human action or decision. Our cotton-wooling is complete for we are now doing it to ourselves, and telling others to do it too.

Piss on that.

If safety has become the guiding force in your motorcycle career, then I would suggest it is time for you to consider an alternative. Actually, I’m going to insist you fuck off and leave us to our life-affirming shenanigans. There are many other things you can do which do not carry the risk of death and maiming. Riding motorcycles is not one of them, because safety is not what riding motorcycles is about at all. Never has been.

Hell, if safety has become the governing paradigm of the human condition then we have failed as species, and it is time for a giant meteor to end us. We did not come to rule this planet – for good or ill – by focusing on safety. Rather we dared, we gambled, we risked all things, we eschewed safety and we achieved mightily.

We are never more alive than when we cheat Death. Sure, He will claim us all in the end, and it may well be before we’re quite ready to go, but until that time comes, we must not kneel at the fetid altar of safety like wall-eyed curs who demand the government save us from ourselves.

What kind of dreadful existence is that? It’s certainly not much of a life, is it?

My safety, or lack thereof, is entirely and only my concern. No-one else’s. I am not responsible for my friends’ safety, and I am certainly not responsible or even remotely interested in the safety of people I do not know.

I alone decide what risk I shall take and how I shall manage that risk. If my well-being is at stake (and it is each time I throw a leg over a bike), I shall break every stupid road rule that needs breaking, and I will do it without a single regret. Yes, I will ride faster than flow of traffic, and yes I will lane-split even if they make it illegal again tomorrow.

If you wish to fill yourself with evil whiskey and belt your S1000RR to the top of Mt Hotham on a cold and rainy night, and you feel this is best done in the nude with your nipples freshly pierced and a song in your heart, then go. May the Road Gods smile upon your efforts. It is not in me to condemn you or judge you. You have decided to roll the dice the way you have and it’s your game, not mine.

At the end of the day, you need to ask yourself what kind of fear-coddled mouth-breather wishes ‘safety’ on another motorcycle rider.

Certainly no-one actively wishes harm upon their fellow riders, but wishing them a ‘safe’ ride is nothing but a hollow, meaningless, feel-good-about-yourself mewl. The wisher of this safety actually wants people to note what a considerate, thoughtful and safety-conscious creature he is. It’s nothing but a ‘Look at me!’ thing.

If you’re a rider, what you need to wish upon your fellow motorcyclist is that he ride well. That he ride with skill. That he ride with immaculate sanity and divine inspiration. That he ride as brilliantly as possible all the time, every time, because when he does that, then and only then, will he be safe as he could possibly be.

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About the Author

is a writer who has contributed to many magazines and websites over the years, edited a couple of those things as well, and written a few books. But his most important contribution is pissing people off. He feels this is his calling in life and something he takes seriously. He also enjoys whiskey, whisky and the way girls dance on tables. And riding motorcycles. He's pretty keen on that, too.

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