So riding season here in the Great White North is in full swing and its great to see all the riders from all walks of the biker life out there adding up the km's like a fat kid on a shopping spree at the Bulk Barn. Now I know its been a bunch of months for those of the less hardcore riding disposition (Winter? Oh you mean the Dark Times!), however common cutesy and etiquette shouldn't be that rusty.
Yes I am sure some people who are less experienced or new still have the wobbles as they are dusting off the cob webs or honing their new found motorcycling skills but for people who have been riding since say... March, like myself, road respect should be out in full force.
Its impossible to wave to everyone and sometimes if you're going to a biker hot spot on a Sunday its down right annoying but on normal day travels waving at your fellow motorcycle enthusiast in my opinion is just as important as indicating a left hand turn! “But my hand is on the clutch” some say, well then nod your head when someone flashes you the wave to acknowledge their hello.
It all goes back to what some might say is a dying part of the motorcycle culture, mutual rider respect. Back in the 50's-70's (I roughly speculate) or depending on the year of your Harley, we all love those old days of release a Harley and see how it fairs because fuck it we can, bikers relied on their fellow riders to help them if they had a mechanical malfunction take place on the road. The classic helmet place near the road was the sign of “hey I'm not just pulled over to take a piss”. The Wave became similar to the helmet on the road signal. We wave out of respect and acknowledgement like seeing a fellow Brother (or Sister) in Arms. You face the same dangers, the same unmatched road experience, the same bugs in the teeth! You also never know when you yourself could have a mechanical break down and gee wouldn't it be nice if that guy you've passed to and from work for the last 3 years and have waved at every time or exchanged the knowing Nod pulled over to help you when he was you swearing, kicking or crying over whatever problem you were facing.
From my experience there's two groups of people who don't wave on a consistent basis. Now this could be just pure bad luck or maybe they don't know. However I have found that hipsters on cafe racers tend to be starring forward so hard its like they are desperately trying to ace an eye exam or simple make out the object in front of them through their outdated inferior eye wear. “But it's vintage!” No its not those are pedophile glasses from the 70's that people stopped wearing for a reason! I'm not slagging on cafe racer riders at all. I know many and they are great enthusiast riders who tend to really understand their machines because the are generally older. Much Respect and Love them.
The other group are the people who believe to are to good or above other riders to interact with them. I know some Clubs do have a policy to not wave at anyone who isn't a member but once again in my experience I have never encountered that attitude from any of the larger clubs in my region.
Whether you are a Club member, solo rider or are in a Riding Club when you are on the road you are a representative of both yourself and whatever affiliations you hold. I think everyone would agree that a friendly face on the road is a welcome on. So lets keep in mind who effortless it is to say hello as we pass one another on the way to our next adventure!