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Broken down bikers, bad Samaritans

Posted By dmonk@usc.edu On April 27, 2018 @ 1:19 am In general,Legends | Comments Disabled

Main piece:

So, I’ve had my ass saved probably like three different times on the side of the road. Broken off luggage, flat tire, you name it. Another biker is gonna stop to help you 100% of the time.

So, there’s this thing, right? Where it’s part of the culture to stop. But also if you don’t, you’re low key kinda fucked. It’s gonna be you on the side of the road.

Especially when you’re on a bike. Doesn’t matter that drivers are gonna have more tools, more room for a ride – you’re almost safer there. If you’re a guy who rides and you’re driving? That’s fine, fair enough. You can probably get away with not stopping.

But if you’re another rider, on your bike, and you don’t stop? Wicked bad luck, wicked dumb move. That’s gonna be you out there the next time.

Swear to God, don’t think I’ve ever been passed by a biker when I’m on the shoulder. I’ve never passed one myself. People take it seriously out there. When you’re up on two wheels, ya gotta have eachothers’ backs.

Context:

Chris has been riding motorcycles since the age of nineteen. He and his beloved FJR1300 are leaving for a cross-country ride to Boston by way of Canada from Los Angeles in two weeks.

Background:

This practice/standard of expectation is common to all North American bikers known by the author.

Analysis:

This is a Good Samaritan concept, probably taken from the Judeo-Christian tradition. Helping a traveler on the side of the road, or “today, you – tomorrow, me” mentality is a fairly common trope in folklore. What makes the biker example so interesting is that it is militantly well-followed. In a sense, it is even enforced by biker culture.


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URL to article: http://folklore.usc.edu/?p=41522