Tuesday, March 20


Does this happen to other riders or am I the only one? I’ve had my first one of the season. I don’t recall hearing it discussed on the forums either. But it seems that my riding season begins with me having a spat of nightmares. Horrible, ghastly tales of being struck by a Mack truck that sends me soaring through the air hitting metal traffic poles as I go down at which point I land in the street where cars run over me or my motorcycle falls from the sky on top of me. Sheer panic awakens me and I’m usually sweaty, confused wondering if I’ve just witnessed my future finis. I swear I have no death wish.

I remember having a particularly gruesome mind trip last year where I saw the accident about to happen and on some subterranean level I screamed at myself to wake up and I did just before impact. It worried me for days and sent me off journaling about the messages embedded in the dream. I’m not afraid to ride and I don’t harbor fears beyond the normal. The only thing I’ve come up with is that the nightmares are my brain’s way of dealing with the real dangers out there; they are close-ups of the extreme risks I can face; and, they serve as reminders to be forever vigilant and sharp. I think it’s my unconscious dealing with the injuries and fatalities that all riders read about, talk about, and some of us feel will/will not happen to us.
I’m don’t believe in the commonly expressed adage that there are only two types of riders, those who have crashed and those who will. Frankly, I don’t know why any rider would buy into such a negative expectation for him or herself. Those who do, I believe will surely live up to it. These figments of my imagination are dramatic reality checks—extremes to be sure, but valuable admonitions nonetheless. My night visions remind me of the popular—and old—television “cop” series, Hill Street Blues, where the police chief, after relaying a list of grisly neighborhood crime stats to his officers, would warn them as my seasonal dreams tell me, “Let’s be careful out there.”