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Do you ever get creeped out about riding?
I was on another riding site and the subject of motorcycles designed to accomodate paraplegics came up. I did some surfing and came upon a thread in a spinal cord injury support group forum. They were discussing their accidents and how it changed their lives. Statements like "I had a KZ400, I loved that bike until the day it changed my life". They were talking about what they can't do now that they used to really enjoy, things ranging from riding to having sex to preparing frozen pizza. Their sign lines contained information such as C-5 and T-1 and partial quad, ect. Some people who posted were pretty up beat but a few were obviously in pain and very bitter about their situation.
I spent 8 years in the military, 4 years as a recon marine and 4 years as a helicopter crewchief, Ive been a deputy, I'm a certified first responder I've been a professional driver and Ive taught defensive driving. Danger is something I've often dealt with and Ive built up a bit of a thick skin and I'm pretty confident in my abilities, at least I thought so, but reading those posts really creeped me out for some reason. Ive been through some scary things and I've had to really reach inside myself to get through at times but I don't think I'm strong enough to handle being a quadriplegic, enough that I sat here tonight and thought about not riding for awhile.
Does this creep anyone else out if you think about it long enough?
 

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Riding is a balancing act. I enjoy my life and my bike and if such should happen to me then I will say a prayer and move on.

:goodluck: to all who ride.
 

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Living in Thailand, one slowly but surely believes in karma. However, it also pays to err on the side of caution, meaning ride defensively, as if you're invisible, speed and aggressiveness dependent upon traffic and weather conditions.

After that, it's fate / karma.

My gf consulted a medium before I bought my V and was (fortunately?) told by the medium that the bike will be safe for me, I will ultimately meet my maker in another manner.......
 

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IMHO, if you dwell on something negative long enough it will eat at you. Let it go and do what you need to do as you well know. If there's a close call, learn from it and move on but don't sit and keep thinking "What if?".
 

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Something similar happened to me not too long ago with another "high risk" activity I do - flying small airplanes. The statistics say they are as safe as motorcycles while the airlines are much much safer.

My flight instructor got killed in a crash but his student survived. He was 79 and started flying when he was 15. He has taught people how to fly longer than I have been alive over thousands of hours. He was the best pilot I knew as far as skills go, but I guess the last time he went flying, those skills weren't good enough.

So I sat and thought about it, decided to mitigate as much risk as I can by training, practicing, and having the skills in my back pocket, but never intentionally go into situations that demand those skills. There is a saying in aviation that goes "Superior pilots use their superior judgement to avoid having to exercise their superior skills". I think this applies to motorcycling and here is what I do.

- Learn, practice, be proficient.
- Protect yourself as much as you can with ATGATT.
- Stay out of situations that require your superior skills by using your superior judgement.

You can mitigate the risk, but you can't eliminate it. To be honest, I think people who ride motorcycles wouldn't be doing it if it didn't have some risk. Just like people who fly small airplanes or base jump or whatever..

Be careful out there..
 

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Don't know how to describe it. Creeped out, maybe? Whatever it is I get a feeling and listen to it. I've been part way to work and decided to turn around and get the car. Sounds crazy.

Last time I ignored it I ended up crashing my dirt bike. 2 surgeries, 4 months in a cast, 2 months in a boot, a life time of having one ankle twice the size as the other. Whatever it is I listen to it.
 

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I always listen to the "voice." Or whatever it is. Having said that, a few years ago I read the book "Proficient Motorcycling" by Hough. Hough suggested the viewpoint that the rider is responsible for everything. That is, no excuses about the cause of accidents. Assume there will be something bad whenever you can't see - around a bend, on a side street, on the road ahead. And also assume that the cars coming the other way may turn or swerve and hit you. Basically be a very defensive rider. This viewpoint also takes the "bad luck" out of the picture.

Anyway, it helps me; and I try to practice this approach, generally, elsewhere in my life.
 

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Something similar happened to me not too long ago with another "high risk" activity I do - flying small airplanes. The statistics say they are as safe as motorcycles while the airlines are much much safer.

My flight instructor got killed in a crash but his student survived. He was 79 and started flying when he was 15. He has taught people how to fly longer than I have been alive over thousands of hours. He was the best pilot I knew as far as skills go, but I guess the last time he went flying, those skills weren't good enough.

So I sat and thought about it, decided to mitigate as much risk as I can by training, practicing, and having the skills in my back pocket, but never intentionally go into situations that demand those skills. There is a saying in aviation that goes "Superior pilots use their superior judgement to avoid having to exercise their superior skills". I think this applies to motorcycling and here is what I do.

- Learn, practice, be proficient.
- Protect yourself as much as you can with ATGATT.
- Stay out of situations that require your superior skills by using your superior judgement.

You can mitigate the risk, but you can't eliminate it. To be honest, I think people who ride motorcycles wouldn't be doing it if it didn't have some risk. Just like people who fly small airplanes or base jump or whatever..

Be careful out there..
This reminds me of saying I learned in ground school.

There are old pilots and there are bold pilots but there are no old and bold pilots.

Same applies to riding motorcycles in my opinion.
 

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Don't know how to describe it. Creeped out, maybe? Whatever it is I get a feeling and listen to it. I've been part way to work and decided to turn around and get the car. Sounds crazy.
No, it doesn't sound crazy at all.

I have heard that little voice that says, "Something isn't right," but kept going. It's the wrong thing to do, but I do respond to that little voice by being extra vigilant. I assume that the little voice is radar that tells me that there's a red-light runner up ahead.
 

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Doesn't sound crazy to me either, I've thought about it some over the years. Don't let it be a distraction to you because then you would make a mistake. Let your training take over, it's made me a better car driver over the years as well. Training can only take you so far though, it's always up to the Lord anyway.

No body wants to be in a wheel chair the rest of there life because of someone making a terrible mistake but I don't want cancer either which is all together out of my control.

Thanks for sharing your heart, my son-inlaw is a firefighter / paramedic too and he's told me some bad bad stuff that has happened, so thank you very much for your service over the years and hope that these replies have help some.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Thanks for everyone's input. Sounds like I'm not alone in my thoughts.
I did get on the bike and ride to work today. As soon as I got moving, all other thoughts just left my head and I concentrated on the task at hand much like every time I ride, everything else just gets moved to the back burner. I think thats the joy in riding.

Scottyneal, I'm going to have to read Proficient Motorcycling sometime. I subscribe to the same idea.
Whenever and wherever I'm on the road is my doing and mine alone. If Iam in the wrong place at the wrong time, its because I put yourself there. I don't necessarily expect or need anyone else to agree, thats just the way I feel about what I do. So far in life it has served me well.
 

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When I was younger my best friend riding behind me, was taken out by a car running a red light. He was paralyzed from the chest down. I sold my bike not long after, and went 4 yrs without one.

Every time I saw a bike I really missed it. I got the V a few yrs ago and do not regret it at all. Sometimes in life you need to take a risk to achieve happiness. As long as I dont take intentionally stupid risks, I feel that riding for me is worth the risk.
 

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I personally know someone who picked up a full 5 gallon bucket while swinging it up to the tailgate of his truck blew out his lower back and lost the use of one leg and partial use of the other.
A co-worker was home with the flu, got up, passed out, hit head on corner of coffee table and died.
All of our days are numbered. I'm going to ride as many miles as I can before my time it up.
 

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You have a lot of company in sometimes getting that creeped out feeling.

For the past few weeks I've had a bad feeling I'm going to hit a deer on my ride in to work in the morning. I'm on the road at 6:30 AM, riding into the sun on country roads with corn growing to within 10 feet of the side of the road. It's a prime time of day for deer movement and I'd have little to no warning when one comes out the corn field and onto the road. I hit one in my car last fall but so far I've not come within 150 yards of one on the bike, although I did almost get taken out by two very large wild turkeys this spring.

I've actually adjusted the route I take into work to avoid roads that have limited visibility to the sides but now I'm on very busy highways with a bunch of wild cage drivers. Will my bad feeling about hitting a deer lead me down the path into a collision with a car? Who knows. I'm as careful as I can be on the bike, ride defensively and wear ATGATT but I do still heed the little voice inside of me.
 

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I personally know someone who picked up a full 5 gallon bucket while swinging it up to the tailgate of his truck blew out his lower back and lost the use of one leg and partial use of the other.
A co-worker was home with the flu, got up, passed out, hit head on corner of coffee table and died.
All of our days are numbered. I'm going to ride as many miles as I can before my time it up.

:thumb:
 

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I went through a pretty crazy crash recently and was surprised by how 'uncreeped' i was afterwards. In the last few days i had one dream in which i survived a helicopter crashing upside down and sliding along the road (a bit like my accident) but even in the dream i wasn't panicked. My girlfriend is a clinical psychologist but I haven't talked in depth about my lack of Post Traumatic Shock. She thought it might come a few days afterwards but I am up to three weeks now and I just can't wait to go riding. If i hadn't work all weekend I would have taken a BMW out for a test ride. Maybe when i go to start up my ride it will hit...I hope not :)

I am not saying i don't get scared. I nearly cried as I thought i was about to die, and only pulled myself together. But this thread has motivated me to talk more to my girl and see what she has to say.

Jumping the gun a little, my guess is she will say problem solve. Analyse why you are worried and see if there are solutions that will mitigate or remove the concerns. On an icy, dark night those concerns may be real & strong enough to justify staying off the bike. On a bright dry, day, if you can't rationalise away those fears then you got a problem!
 

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By all accounts, I've lived a very colourful life, lived in about 7 different countries, married a few times (each time, a different nationality)...., made lots and lots and lots of mistakes.

Strangely, my only regrets are the things that I didn't do.

The risk in living is to live without risks.

However, that does not mean taking stupid risks, especially when it comes to riding.
 
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