People Are Crazy... and Everyone Is A Racer

?And everyone is a racer. If you doubt that, you've obviously never driven in New York City during rush hour. Look closely at the driver of that Japanese luxury car. He's just as miffed as you the racer is at having to drive fifty-five miles per hour when the speedometer on the car clearly reads one hundred and fifty. Why can't we drive it at that speed if the car can come close to it. Man, just look at him fiddling with the knobs pretending to be tuning the radio into a station. We racers know what he is really doing is setting the frequency of his imaginary laser beam roadblock remover system. You know the ones; they make little bomb sounds as we pretend we are obliterating our foes on the drive home.

If you really want to annoy him, honk your horn, tailgate him for a few seconds then cut in front of him. When he reaches his boiling point, slam on your brakes and drive slower than you were both going previously. then apply your brakes and drive slower than you were driving before you cut him off. His typical response will be one of anger, an anger borne of the pent-up frustrations of living in a high tech world and being legislated into a low-tech existence. Our driver will invariably stab the gas pedal and swerve out of the lane in an attempt to pass you back. You, in turn, speed up, knowing that his intent is to block pass you at the first opportunity, then brake check you just so you get the message.

And so this high-speed game of "chicken" unfolds on any highway others will graciously move over to let the two road-warriors carry on with the spectacle. I've participated in a more than a few such duels myself though lately I choose to be a bystander to other people's road rage. This emotionally charged ego-tripping could be very dangerous to anyone near the scene.

Society says we should be punished for breaking their law of a maximum velocity of fifty-five miles per hour (in New York at least). Most racers will try to get away with as much as we can, just like on the track and usually have the skills to pull it off. The typical driver lacks all of the needed skills and courage to indulge themselves and so after one or more two hundred dollar speeding tickets, the potential racer's lust for life is usually squashed flatter than Spongebob in the Arizona desert. They usually go home more frustrated, angrier, and two bills poorer. I'm glad I race motorcycles; I'm glad I have a family of people who know and think and feel exactly as I do... we are fortunate to be real racers.

Drivers aren't the only ones who are acting crazy either. Anyone who has walked or driven in Manhattan can attest to the fact that the craziest of all humans is not "Checkered Cabbus-Weavus"; that honor belongs to "Pedestrius Al-sue-yerbutt", the dreaded New York City pedestrian.

No other form of life on the planet is capable of staring into the eyes of the errant tractor-trailer driver and then stepping nonchalantly into the path of his serpentine behemoth. If you've never seen eighteen thousand pounds of truck with all the wheels locked up you don't know what you're missing. The puff of blue smoke in the distance alerts one to the presence of "Pedestrius Al-su-yerbutt."

While the truck driver shakes uncontrollably, trying to bring his heartbeat back below the three hundred mark, "Pedestrius Al-su-yerbutt" flashes an ear to ear grin. And why shouldn't they, they've just looked fear and death in the face and walked away unscathed. Others can only look on in amazement; children will point in their direction with wonder and awe. They are momentarily idolized as they relish fifteen seconds worth of their fifteen minutes of fame. They will be on the tongues of everyone who saw their gutsy moves,

"Holy cripes, did you see that?"

I'm glad I race motorcycles; I'm glad I have a family of people who know and think and feel exactly as I do... we are fortunate to be real racers and have our outlet.

Before we forget that this is a moto-cross story, let me get to the heart of the matter. The point is simply how much we as off road riders and racers have to be grateful for. Unlike the road-rager and "Pedestrius Al-sue-yerbutt," we don't have to drive our cars at one hundred and twenty miles per hour, nor do we have to tempt fate by stepping in front of speeding trucks just to feel that surge of adrenaline. Thank God we are real racers... I do. We aren't as unlucky as the folks who live out the two examples of non-racers.

We are the normal; we can take out our frustrations on machines that were designed to be the healers of our pressures and frustrations. We have moto-cross and the woods to keep us sane. How lucky we are indeed. I'm glad I race motorcycles; I'm glad I have a family of people who know and think and feel exactly as I do... I am fortunate to be among real racers. So when next you are privy to witness any of the afore mentioned dramas, you'll know? people are crazy, and everyone is a racer.

Michael James

*7 years covering professional motocross racing for Cycle News, mxlarge.com, motocross.com, and mxwired.com *amateur motocross racer *screenwriter - seeking representation- *8 year columnist for several motocross papers and magazines

In The News:

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TRB grants one-day SLEX, NLEX access to small motorcycles  Top Gear PhilippinesSub-400cc motorcycles given a one-day access to SLEX, NLEX for LTO anniversary celebration.
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The Man, the Myth: Inside Keanu Reeves' Inscrutable Private World  E! NEWSAfter 33 years in Hollywood, the John Wick: Chapter 3—Parabellum star remains purposely enigmatic and protective of his private life, for good reason.
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Zooming in on the future of electric motorcycles  euronewsTake a look around the first ever electric motorcycle exhibition.
Man hospitalized after two motorcycle crash in Mecosta Co.  WXMI FOX 17 West MichiganMECOSTA COUNTY, Mich. -- One person is hospitalized after a crash involving two motorcycles. Deputies in Mecosta County say the two were riding ...
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5 new, tastefully modified Royal Enfield motorcycles from India & abroad  CartoqThere is no denying the fact that Royal Enfield motorcycles are a mod favourite across the country. They are now getting recognized by international mod houses ...
SCHP investigating 12 motorcycle crashes as Rally Week continues  WMBFJust this week the South Carolina State Highway Patrol has reported two deaths involving motorcycles in Horry County.
Once Again, the Mongols Motorcycle Club Can Legally Keep Its Patch  ReasonThe federal attempt to take the patch uniquely combines free speech violations and asset forfeiture.
Rare Motorcycle: 1938 Vincent "Series A" Among Others Found In LA Warehouse Stash And Now For Sale  RoadracingWorld.comSome of the world's rarest motorcycles buried in a forgotten Los Angeles warehouse collection are now for sale with viewing in Grand Rapids, MI on May 22, ...
Harley-Davidson Is Redefining Itself With the New LiveWire Electric Bike  Robb ReportHarley-Davidson's new LiveWire electric motorcycle is a far cry from the company's traditional bikes—with all new EV bells and whistles.
Motorcycle community reacts to deadly accidents  WKRG News 5Owner of Mototech in Mobile, Jean Paul Stassi said, "We lost two good friends of ours that were out there today."
Rumson motorcycle crash kills two Monmouth County residents Saturday  Asbury Park PressJohn J. Berry Jr., 29, of Atlantic Highlands, and his passenger, Stephanie Hogan 28, of Red Bank were pronounced dead at the scene.
concept proposes how ducati's first electric motorcycle might look  Designboomthe question is when rather than will ducati produce an electric model, so could this be their upcoming motorcycle design?
Without helmet requirement, Missouri likely to see more motorcycle deaths  STLtoday.comJEFFERSON CITY — The number of motorcycle riders who die in Missouri is likely to increase if Gov. Mike Parson signs off on a new helmet law this summer.
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Security: Motorcyclists get June 1 deadline for registration of motorcycles  The Nation NewspaperOwners of motorcycles in Niger state have been given till June 1st 2019 to register their motorcycles or stop operating in the state.
Shepherd Man Injured in Motorcycle Accident  9&10 NewsDeputies say they were called to an accident on Jefferson Rd near 150th Ave around 5:30 p.m.. They say two motorcycles were driving side by side, going ...
Man dies after motorcycle crash in Lake County  UpNorthLive.comLAKE COUNTY, Mich. , (WPBN/WGTU) -- A Kentwood man is dead after a motorcycle crash on Thursday night in Yates Township. According to Lake County ...
Jawa Motorcycles Reunite 1971 Indo-Pak War Veteran IAF Fighter Pilots Known as Hell's Angels  News18A team of 5 IAF officers called Hell's Angels recreated a moment with new Jawa bikes at a fundraiser event for Indian Armed Forces.
Electric Motorcycle Manufacturer Lightning Brings Its New Strike To A Party  RideApartThe new Lightning Strike came out to play at a big show in California. Among the classic cars and crazy builds, the Strike got no small amount of attention.
Motorcycle Accident Near LAX Caught on Camera - NBC Southern California  NBC Southern CaliforniaA couple were injured in a motorcycle accident after a vehicle caused their motorcycle to fall over and then ran over the husband, then fleeing the scene.
Can motorcycles drive side by side? Yes, but if there's no more than 2 of them  WKMG News 6 & ClickOrlandoSusie, of Orlando, asked, “Can three motorcycles ride next to each other in a single travel lane?”
2019 BMW X5 Launched | Triumph Electric Motorcycle Project  NDTVAuto.comThe top automotive stories of the day - The 2019 BMW X5 SUV has been launched in India with prices starting at Rs. 72.90 lakh (ex-showroom). The fourth ...
Tour Arch Motorcycle and Keanu Reeves' bike collection - Autoblog  AutoblogKeanu Reeves sat down with GQ to discuss his motorcycle origins and show off some of his favorite bikes.
Top 5 Two-wheeler News Of The Week  ZigWheels.comMissed the two-wheeler action this week? Worry not, we have you covered!
Husqvarna Motorcycles Launch Confirmed For Q3 2019  Car Blog IndiaReports confirm that Husqvarna Svartpilen and Vitpilen 401 will be launched by this festive season. The motorcycles will be manufactured by Bajaj Auto.
Motorcycles stolen in North Bay Village ahead of Memorial Day weekend  WSVN 7News | Miami News, Weather, Sports | Fort LauderdaleNORTH BAY VILLAGE, FLA. (WSVN) - Police searching for the people responsible for multiple motorcycle thefts and attempted thefts in North Bay Village.

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