Are we embarrassed to own a Non-HD?
Sour Harley Grapes
I was reading the above thread and it led me to start up this related thread. While I'm using the above grapes thread as the direct reference, there are numerous threads that are similar to this as they pop up every week or two it seems.
You know, I love motorcycles...period. There are Suzuki's I like, and some I do not. There are HD's I like, and some I do not etc. My biggest thing with HD is that it really seems like it is a "seen one, seen em all" type of bike, a dime a dozen. My wife, who likes my 9 but isn't a big motorcycle chick or anything like that, made the comment the other day after we passed a big group of HD's... "I'm glad you have this bike, no other bikes look like it, whereas all of those other bikes we passed looked about the same". That's why I love my 9 over an HD, it stands out.
Now, let me go out on a limb for a moment and make an observation that I think is interesting...
You can't help but notice how all of the HD people do everything they can to show they ride an HD. They have the shirts, jackets, stickers on their pickup truck window and I'm sure some have on their HD boxers or thongs underneath it all. They own an HD and they are proud of it and want everyone to know it.
This seems contrary to our 9 community in ways. Here it seems like many want their Suzuki completely "debadged", no sign of what the bike is... "keep em guessing" etc. I know for most it's about the look, but to anyone outside of the 9 community, it may come off as being embarrassed and trying to hide what we ride. Am I saying that people on this site are embarrassed or hiding what they ride... No, I'm just making an observation of how it could appear.
I semi-debadged this past week by removing the M109r stickers on the side and previously had removed the Suzuki off the tail of the 9. I did this because of how it looked as many do. I'm proud to own a Suzuki and when I'm asked what kind of bike it is, I answer "it's a Suzuki M109r" proudly. I plan to always have something on it that shows what it is, whether it be the Suzuki "S" on the speedo housing or the Boulevard badge on the tank. If I ever repaint, I hope I'll keep Suzuki on it as well, something along the lines of how Bobbymac did his 9.
Not at all embarrassed.......
I am not at all embarrassed to own and ride a non-HD bike. I spent a good amount of time on my decision to buy a bike. I looked at several "metrics", HD's and Victories. The M109R stood out for me, end of story. HD riders get caught up in the hype, "look at me, I'm a biker" hence all the HD clothing, stickers, lunch boxes :P.... They also want to throw out the "American made" tag line when in reality HD imports just over 40% of their parts from overseas, so they are 59% American Made. I was at a local bar this last Saturday for the UFC fight and when I pulled in there were about a dozen bikes parked out front (10 of them HD's) I pulled up a parked right next to them. After the fights were over I went out and found a crowd (15 +) around the M109 and when I walked up they all wanted to know what kind of bike it was. I responded "This is the Suzuki M109R", a few were shocked that it was a Suzuki and not a custom bike. One guy asked "it came from the factory like that?" (mine is stock, no mods - yet). I found this very satisfying, people love the look of the M109. I also couldn't help but notice that no one was really paying any attention to the HD's, as you stated, "seen one, seen em all".
Some people spend an entire lifetime wondering if they made a difference in the world. But, the Marines don't have that problem.
Ronald Reagan, President of the United States; 1985
Not into the names, Period.
Honestly, I get frustrated that my wife has fallen victim to the Harley Hype. By Hype I mean that she owns a lot of HD gear. She had a V rod so, no big deal. She worked part time at the Harley Stealer up in Olymipia. Still, No problem, the clothes look fine, I'm ok with that. But the fact that she is so dead set on a Road King over much better bikes out there. We looked a a sweet Victory Crossroads 8 Ball the other day. The bike was cool, I'd ride the snot out of it. But she is unsure cause she still wants the King. Oh well, we'll keep looking. I have found that the HD riders that don't respect other makes have issues that run deeper than what bike someone owns. I leave it at that. I'm of the mindset,"just shut up and Ride." That is why we have these things. I belong to the Ranger Assoc, the 25th Inf Div assoc, The AGC, The ASSC, etc... I dont want to have a bike to fit in. I have more groups than I have time already. I just love my 9. I'll get another sport bike down the road to satisfy the urges (Won't do Ducati just to be cool either) but for now, the 9 is more than a great bike.