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Location: New York

Tuesday, March 08, 2005

Florida Bikers

Florida Bikers
Originally uploaded by Sally Ann.
The minute I saw this photo I was reminded of another "mega" biker scene from years ago.

Lar and I were cruising in a small town just outside of Buffalo, New York. It was a warm summer day and the town we were in was about as quaint as it gets. We're driving slow on the Main Street oohing and aahing about the old architecture and how it reminded us of the "good ole days".

We approached the only red light in town, sat and waited for the light to turn. A couple of seconds later we began to hear the unmistakable sound of a "scooter" pulling up next to us in the next lane. We look over and see this "Geeky kind of guy" straddling his "bike". He wore a funky helmet, khakie shorts and a white T-shirt. His sneakers were new.

Lar and I kind of chuckled. The Scooterboy" seemed to fit the surroundings, non-threatening, as if the town would only allow this kind of bike on its streets. The whole scene was all very warm and fuzzy for a moment.

Then the bubble that all was well in America today was burst in a heartbeat for us and Scooterboy. But more for Scooterboy, I might add. I don't know how many of you who are reading this know what the sound of 200 choppers coming up from the rear sounds like, but I think you can imagine. I'll pick the word "deafening" to help you out.

Seconds later, lots of black leather, Nazi helmets, chains and all manner of anti-establishment logo-ed bikers surrounded, not us, Scooterboy, crowding him like sheep in the chute.

The light had changed, but neither Scooterboy or us dared move. Now this is back in the days when bikers would just as soon rip your heart out than to look at you.

The mass of bikers were the "Chosen Few", a rival group to the "Hells Angels." This wasn't necessarily a good thing to know.

We watched and waited for the club to hassle Scooterboy more than what they already were, revving their bikes and pretending not to notice him until they chose to rip his head off and eat his scooter. It was clearly a game of who was going to move through the light first. The light had changed green a minute earlier. We could have, but we were far more interested in what the Chosen Few was going to do to Scooterboy. Like I said, they weren't paying any attention to Lar and I at all.

Finally, Scooterboy very slowly moved out, straight up the street. I'm sure he thought about his "flight" or "fight" options as he sat there surrounded by bad boys and chose flight! The Chosen Few was fair about it and gave him a head start before they took off behind him.

To our astonishment, two blocks up they turned left and let him go, probably because it was a Sunday and they'd already eaten. I'm sure Scooterboy remembers this moment as well as I do.

A thumbs up to Steve Hughey for sending this photo from Florida.


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