From ex 1%er

Lessons learned by and from Elders.
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From ex 1%er

Post by FTW »

Here is a post from our old website that might be useful to others.

From ex 1%er

I have been asked for years, to share my life story. Maybe someday before I die, I may tell the whole story, but for now, I am going to share this little tidbit for 2 reasons. Since so many "boomers" are getting back onto motorcycles, I want to explain the difference between what 1% MC's used to be like, (since I no longer ride with them, I can not honestly state what their life is like in this day and age) and what a "riding club" is like in today's world.

I joined my first "club" around 40 years ago. I will not mention the name of the "organization" however I will admit it was not a "weekend" group. We partied and rode full time, meaning we lived up to the reputation of the "diamond" patch on the front of our cuts.

I was young and wild at that time and the main reason I joined was for the "family" connection. It took me over a year to "earn" my colors but even during my "prospecting" era, I felt like I belonged to a family where people cared about me. Once I became a full member, I discovered just how strong the bond of "true brothers" was. For example, one time when I ended up in jail, they "protected" my property (my bike, weapons and other personal belongings) AND my family, until I got out. Another time when I was facing a life sentence, they helped "fake" my death, so the locals would quit looking for me, then helped provide "safe houses" all across the country where I could stay as I traveled.

At that time in my life, the fact that we rode motorcycles or sleds, was not as important as the "organization" and our connection to each other. The primary thrill of riding bikes back then was twofold. One was the feeling of freedom and the wind in our faces as we traveled down the highway. This feeling of freedom was especially important since all of had spent time locked up behind bars at some time in our lives.

The second thrill was the look on the "citizens" faces as we traveled through their town. I still remember one trip I took on Memorial Day weekend years ago, where 100+ hardcore bikers traveled through some little town in Iowa on our way to a rally and the local "fuzz" called out the State Police. The State Police escorted us to the state park then set up barriers around our campsite to keep us separated from the "citizens" until the National Guard showed up to "monitor" our activities and "protect" the locals.

I rode with that group for many many years and if truth be told, I am very lucky to still be alive and free today. If I would have been convicted and served the maximum sentence every time I was arrested, I would be serving over 200 years in prison on top of 3 life sentences, and that is not counting all the crimes I committed and was never arrested for.

Now that I told you about my past, let me fast forward to the present and my life in a riding club. I eventually got tired of life behind bars and decided to change my lifestyle. I still LOVE to ride, especially making road trips and going to rallies, but now I spend more time riding then I do sitting in "biker bars" and drinking.

After putting my jail time behind me and relocating to a new part of the country, I would get out on my bike as often as I could, but now I always rode alone and never wore a vest. I loved riding alone, but missed the fellowship of my old club members. I started thinking about joining another MC but didn't want the hassle of attracting cops, possible conflicts with other MC's over territory, or any of the other crap. I just wanted to ride, enjoy the sunshine and have good clean fun with other bikers.

I checked into several "organizations" but most of them seemed to be primarily involved with races, shows and other events. Again, my main goal was to simply RIDE the highways and see as much country as possible.

I eventually decided to give Older Bikers a shot and so far, this is how my life has turned out. I meet with other members one night a week at a local "bike night." This is not a "mandatory" meeting, it is simply a chance to meet, talk, eat and look at bikes. While the bike night is held at a "family style restaurant and bar" I do not drink alcohol while I am there. It's simply a chance for fellowship with other bikers and I have had other members over to my house and/or I have been to their house.

I still go to rallies on a regular basis, but now I am able to share the experiences with other Older Bikers and not have to worry about someone next to me breaking the law or wondering if there is an undercover FBI agent watching us. Enjoying a rally now, simply means enjoying the music or other entertainment, having good conversations with "friends" and taking road trips together.

I also get to enjoy "weekly rides" with other Older Bikers. Basically, every weekend, we take a nice long ride to some out of town restaurant or tourist attraction and maybe with the exception of riding a few miles over the speed limit though some town, I no longer have to worry about my actions or the actions of those riding in front or behind me, yet I still get to enjoy their fellowship and the riding.

So, in a nutshell, by riding with a "Riding Club" I still get to ride and enjoy the highways while riding with friends, but I don't have to worry about the fighting, jails, or other hassles. I also have to admit that I still take a certain amount of pride in wearing a backpatch, letting others know I "belong" and while it's true I didn't "have" to earn this patch like I did my old one, I am proud that I have lived long enough to to be classified as an "OLDER BIKER.

The other primary difference is the "bond." While I enjoy talking, eating, riding and partying with other members of the riding club, that connection or bond does not even come close to the type of "bond" I had with my "brothers, but then again, most of my old "brothers" are either dead or in prison, so at least I still have "friends" I can socialize and ride with.
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Re: From ex 1%er


Great post ! Thanks for sharing.
George Belcher
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