Don’t get the wrong impression, I’m not a writer –so blogging does not come naturally to me as it may with you. But to pull this web site off I have to blog so here it goes:
Motorcycles were always for the “other” people, the not so nice or good people, at least that is what I was led to believe growing up in New York. When my Aunt and Uncle moved by us, on Long Island, my cousins’ became more accessible to my family and I found myself visiting them quite often. Of my two cousins the spotlight however was always on the older one, Jo, only 4 years older than me and a Biker! My Uncle thought Jo was a juvenile delinquent because she rode a Motorcycle (Biker Syndrome) and with her Biker associations he usually refused to speak to her with any sort of civility.
Her parents always criticized her when she came home in “gang leathers”; but I believe my Aunt and Uncle were really afraid of her Biker friends they let her come and go as she pleased. My Aunt told me they were “gang members “dirty nasty gang members” (Biker Syndrome) and I was not to speak to them when I was there visiting, or she threaten to tell my mom. (My mom thought my Aunt was nuts)
I thought my older cousin was the coolest person on earth. She was tough and confident and rode a motorcycle. (Just as a side note here, when I decided to kick the good little girl habit and become a Hippie my Uncle refused to speak to me too). My Aunt and Uncle also said Jo was in a gang a motorcycle gang and all motorcycle gang members are crude, drink, smoke dope, steal and smoke cigarettes. (Biker Syndrome) After that list, cigarette smoking didn’t seem too bad to me, besides I was only 13 and it was 1968, and yea right, like I never smoked before! Needless to say when Jo turned 19 she married, and rode off into the sunset all the way to Florida and never looked back. The only regret I have: I never got up the nerve to ask them for a ride.
So at the impressible age of 13, I witnessed Biker Syndrome first hand. I was taught by my elders that people who rode motorcycles aka bikers were “bad, wild non-conformist” who broke all the rules and didn’t fit into society therefore rebellious and dangerous. It didn’t scare me; it enticed me to learn more, but for awhile I was apprehensive to be around bikers (not that there were many opportunities to do so) and then I had my first ride and I was hooked.