Motorcycle riding is a very popular hobby and avocation for many Americans, as is the use of American biker slang to accompany it. The ride just isn’t as much fun unless one learns the appropriate lingo to accompany the sport.
Is your neighbor a weekend warrior? That’s the guy who drags a highly tricked-out motorcycle for road trips on Saturday and Sunday. He’s the guy with the leather chaps, and of course, the black leather jacket, not to mention the mirrored aviator sunglasses. The outfit is of note because, like the bike, it usually looks very brand new and hardly used.
He may not be a very good bike rider, but he’s arrayed in his sartorial splendor for a sunny ride down the interstate!
Your weekend biker neighbor might also be a more of a “waxer.” That’s someone lifestyle bikers sneer at. At least the Weekend Warrior gets on the bike, even if it’s only on weekends. The Waxer is the guy who takes out his highly expensive and chrome-plated cycle, but he takes out only as far as the driveway.
That’s because he washes nonexistent dirt off it, then waxes and waxes and waxes it until it shines like a diamond.
This kind of rider (or non-rider, if he’s a Waxer), might invest in a Touring Cycle. That’s one built for comfort and flair, and is avoided by bikers who are looking for speed and handling.
The good news is that if the weekender ever decides to sell his bike, it really will be a mint (and unused) motorcycle!
If you pass by a motorcycle rider on the road, you might be able to tell if he’s taking this seriously, or if he’s just the Weekend Warrior or Waxer variety of biker.
One way is how he rides the bike. Is he sitting straight up, hair in the wind, enjoying the sunshine of the day? He might just be a really happy biker, but chances are he’s less than a professional.
That’s because serious riders know that the wind hitting them square in the chest - the attitude of Mr. Happy Biker - does a lot to reduce the aerodynamics of a motorcycle ride.
The serious biker keeps his head low, his arms tight to his sides. He makes himself one with the motorcycle, so as to reduce the “drag” of the wind over both him and the bike.
This seating position is known in American biker slang as “the Tuck.” You see a biker doing it, chances are you’re looking at a pro who does more than take his wheels out for a weekend spin.
This kind of professional biker may also be one who engages in racing events with his fellow enthusiasts. “Trial Riding” involves an unerring ability to control the bike over terrain (much of this type of sport riding is done on off road competitions.)
These kind of bikes are built specially for the sport. They’re very light for maneuverability, and because the biker is constantly using the cycle for jumping, twisting and turning, he’s so involved in the sport, he rarely sits down. Because of that, and the weight factor (you go faster with less weight on the bike), the Trial bikes usually are not equipped with seats.
The expert biker may “thrash” it, as in riding it with attitude. He may seek out roads with “twisties”; that is, a road with hairpin turns that make riding the cycle an act of skill and daring (and of course, thrilling!)
This kind of rider “twists the wick” (steps on the accelerator to get that much-needed speed.) This is a guy who is seeking “the Ton,” or who may ride at speeds clocking in at 100 mph. In American biker slang, there is also the Double Ton, or the Double, which is 200 mph. Not that riders ever go that fast, but for the professional who has a need for speed, it’s the goal towards which he really is driven.