Yep I've pretty much heard them all from members of the public. So why are we generally treated with loathing and disdain from the general community?
The biking community has partly brought this upon ourselves where I have seen bike riders smash mirrors off cars, hurl abuse and generally ride like they are a law unto themselves. Then there are the 1%ers. It only takes a shoot out or two for the media to portray all bikers are bad just by association and its pretty easy for anyone that knows nothing about bikes or riders to put two and two together.
Despite all of these things there are many good riders within our community that are helpful and courteous. There are charity rides right around the country from the Christmas toy runs, Black Dog Ride(mental health), pink ribbon ride(breast cancer), The Snowy ride(Children's cancer) and many more.
Instead or being harassed and treated like second class citizens we really should have the community backing bike riders and even giving bike riders preferential treatment and actually cater to us. Why?
Picture this; a family pack their car for a day out, mum/dad and the 2 kids and the family dog pile into the car. They drive a couple of hours along the scenic back route and come to a beautiful lake with mountains flanking the other side. They unload their picnic rug and basket and proceed to have a picnic lunch by the lake at a table with the best view of the lake, taking everything they require out of the boot of their car. Finished up for the day they deposit their rubbish and then pack up and head for home.
So what is wrong with this picture you might ask? Well everything I say. This family has basically taken over the best possible spot in this beautiful lake side park whilst 4 people spent absolutely nothing before leaving and going home.
Now picture four motorcyclists turning up on their bikes, with virtually no room to carry anything a group of bikers will stop at a local cafe/pub to purchase food and drink and fuel they require whilst having their picnic lunch by the lake.
The above example happens far to often, I know I have witnessed it many times and also been part of it on both sides, a few times with my wife's family where they did exactly what I described above. They do it all the time.
I know when I'm out on the bike and with friends we buy everything everywhere we go, fuel, food, drinks, accommodation, beer, steaks. How would small deserted country pubs around Australia stay open it it wasn't for us motorcyclists.
Maybe it's time the general community took a good look at themselves and catered to bikers and not treat us as second class citizens, we love to ride and we spend money. Come on guys it's not hard. Look after us and we will return, word of mouth spreads both good and bad.