8 Signs You’re a Biker N00B

Lists -



Biker n00b: “Wait, you chose to wear a neon colored jacket?”

1. You choose your helmet based on your motorcycle.
You’d love to wear a full-face, but only if borrowing a friend’s Honda CBR600RR, otherwise you stick to your Bell Custom 500, no matter the riding conditions, when riding your Bonneville. Sure, the full-face is more comfortable and far safer, but what will people think?

Standard riding uniform as soon as the sun comes out.

2. Sun’s out, guns out.
As soon as the temperature gets above 60 degrees, you’re ready to get out there in a t-shirt or sleeveless vest. Riding down the road, squeezing the handlebars so your triceps flex, you look around to try and catch people watching you. You’re only going 40 mph, nothing bad can happen.

3. If you don’t rev your bike at idle, it might die.
Doesn’t matter if you’re on a 600cc sportbike or a bobber, any time your bike isn’t in gear you give the throttle a few good twists just to let the world know you’re a bad ass who’d be doing 100 mph if you weren’t stuck at that light. When asked why, you mumble something about it being good for the engine, it being important to let people know you’re there for safety reasons, or that it’s just a habit and you, “don’t realize you are doing it.”

200 guys trying to show off all in one tiny parking lot…what could go wrong?

4. You meet up with your motorcycle friends in the most populated places possible.
Whether you prefer the local motorcycle café or just a super populated downtown area; you and your friends wouldn’t think of meeting anywhere you couldn’t line up all of your bikes for everyone to admire. Sure, parking sucks and there are pedestrians everywhere and the food is greasy and awful, but you just feel at home there.

5. You LOVE to stand around admiring motorcycles.
You could spend all day listening to some guy ramble about how much faster adjusting his rear-sets by 1/8 inch made him or explaining why he wasn’t as fast as usual at a recent track day. Motorcycle shows are your absolute favorite, and you’ve almost perfected the ability to look at some builder’s rat-rod and point out he’s using the front forks from a 1967 Harley something or other.

If it’s fast enough for RideApart contributors Jamie Robinson and Cody Blank, it’s fast enough for me.

6. You think 600cc sport bikes are for girls and new riders.
Surely, you will outgrow that puny engine as soon as you get comfortable with operating the clutch. The power is just so limiting, you actually have to be able to turn to keep up with your buddies and can’t just catch them in the next straight. Also, absolutely no one is impressed when you say it makes 125 hp.

7. Your style of riding is the best version of motorcycling; everyone else is doing it wrong.
Those sportbike guys dress like idiots in their onesies and their bikes look like transformers. Those Harley guys look like pirates and ride bikes that are too heavy, too loud, too chrome, and too obnoxious. Those café dudes are posers who ride uncomfortable bikes just so people will think they look like Steve McQueen. Those dirt bike dudes, in their lifted trucks, flat bill hats, and Monster-fueled blood – have to actually truck their bikes places to ride. Those adventure guys just sit on their bikes, wearing brightly colored snowsuits, while miles accumulate underneath them; those things would be miserable to ride downtown.

Shocking that the Range Rover driver couldn’t predict the motorcyclists next move, right?

8. Riding in appropriate formation is boring.
Riding in groups is only fun if you’re either a) riding side by side with your friend like motor-cops do or b) if you’re passing each other every few seconds. That lane position stuff they talked about at your MSF course was so lame, no one actually rides like that. What’s the point of riding together if you aren’t interacting the whole time?

Offended? You might be a biker n00b….

Related Links:
Rants: Why All Bikes Are Awesome, Arguments Be Damned
Lists: 10 Things They Never Told You About Becoming a Biker
Rants: Sweet Gixxer, Bro
Lessons Learned: What I Learned From Becoming a Motorcycle Journalist

  • Scott Sweeney

    Whats wrong with #5? Half the fun is seeing what other folks are on and speaking to them about their pride and joy.

    • William Connor

      Kind of have to agree with you here. I do enjoy a good motorcycle show, whether it’s a local bike night or a large trade show. Shiny things make me happy. Nothing better than a road trip to get there on the bike.

      • Guilherme Bernard de Paula

        I get what you guys are saying but there’s always a limit, right ? I think that what Sean meant was those guys who talk ONLY about motorcycles and end up being annoying.

        • Scott Sweeney

          I see what you (and Sean) may be saying in that case.

    • karlInSanDiego

      Maybe he’s just pointing out re:#5, it loses some of its luster 20 years down the line. When you’re new to it, it might be your whole world, but more experienced bikers have other interests as well.

      • torr10

        I’ve been riding since 1974. I still like to look at others bikes. It makes them feel good and makes me think.

        • karlInSanDiego

          If you check bikes out to make them feel good, then you sir, are a true Motorhead/Petrolhead/Gearhead! I’m with you by the way. How come we’re not the bike journos? Ha! When I’m not enjoying the company of people, cars & bikes are cool compatriots. The only time I wasn’t totally turned on by cars & bikes was when my Volkswagen Rabbit was losing a battle with cancer and it made me pretty depressed. Now all these years later I have the skills to save a car from that.

          • Piglet2010

            My VW Rabbit went to the junkyard when one of the front strut mounts gave way due to rust.

            • Mister X

              Occasionally I’d get one of the early one’s coming to my shop on the hook, they always had over charging issues and the battery would boil away the electrolite killing it, and as it did so, the cooling fan spread it throughout the engine compartment, the first to go was usually the hood release cable, but it affected the strut tower mounts as well, making them considerably more susceptible to rust, and weakening them.

              • Piglet2010

                My Rabbit died from 13 years of road deicing salts – had to avoid puddles due to the huge holes in the floor pan.

    • Chris McKendry

      I love admiring bikes and checking out new and different stuff just as much as anyone else, but when the talking outweighs actual riding time, then it’s annoying. Enough talk, time to cruise. Kind of like the car meet guys that put thousands into a car only to hard park it and talk about it. But hey, it’s all about forum fame, right? haha…

    • http://www.twitter.com/seanmacdonald sean macdonald

      Do you really care about some stranger’s 45 minute story about how he swapped for a Rizoma chain cover and noticed a difference? I love looking at bikes as much as the anyone, and love both new tech or crazy mods….but only for about 10 minutes or so.

      I love browsing the bikes at any event, but you won’t find me out oggling bikes the entire time. I’d way rather hear someone’s adventure story or have an actual conversation with someone than stand awkwardly next to a stranger and try and one-up them with my random bike knowledge.

      Too many guys wanna ride for 30 minutes to hang and try and out-brag each other for hours. Maybe I’m just not very social, but that just doesn’t do it for me.

      • grb

        well then point 5 is not about admiring bikes, is it, it should be about bragging, which does suck, specially if you’re just repeating what you read earlier

      • markbvt

        Thank you. It’s fun to go hang out at the local bike night with my friends, after work, before heading home — because I’m hanging with my friends — but otherwise I’d rather be out riding than standing around for an extended period looking at people’s bikes. Motorcycle shows are fun in winter when the roads are too slippery to ride, but I don’t bother with them in the summer.

      • Vincent Thieu

        Dude it says ” You LOVE to stand around admiring motorcycles” not “you love 45 minute stories about whatever…” why does Admiring another motorcycle mean whatever painful experience you’re on about lol

      • Robert Horn

        One of life’s occasionally amusing experiences: Parking at the Rock Store, Lookout (Is it still there?) or Highland House (That was a long time ago – RIP), and:
        A) Asking “That Guy Going Nowhere On His Gee Wizz Special” if he had any trouble mounting those rearsets, laying down that paint job, etc… – and basically getting to the point that all the work was done by Visa Racing or Mastercard Customs.
        B) Riding something insanely exotic there, walking away as soon as possible and far enough away so nobody knows whose bike it is – and listening to the resident blowhard(s) explain to his buddies why the bike is unrideable – never mind the obvious fact that it must have been ridden there.

        Then go riding some more.

      • aergern

        Yeah, as far as #5 goes … maybe one might make a cool friend out of listening to their stories and they’ll listen to yours. This whole list sounds like a ranty sense of entitlement that your right and it’s just flame bait. I expect this on something like BARF but this is suppose to be a decent and somewhat serious site.

        This is just a list offend folks and quite frankly your opinion. *shrug*

        • Mister X

          Ah, good fellow two wheeler, perhaps you haven’t been “trapped” by one of these soul sucking riders yet, but one day, I promise you, you will understand.

      • Piglet2010

        Worse is hearing about everyone’s brother’s cow-orker’s uncle who had a Bonnie 40 years ago – NO, I DO NOT CARE!

        • Robert Horn

          And about how mom sold said Bonnie for $10.00 while he was in Viet Nam, man.

      • luxlamf

        I have to agree with you here, so many people out there with all this “Bike Thing” talking and dressing funny and put 2000 miles a year on their bikes if that but talk 100,000 miles worth everyday. I ride almost everyday of the year, I have 2 bikes and they both get at least 11,000 miles on them each every year and I have never once refereed to myself as a “Biker” nor do I wear a bunch of emblems and crap with the brand of bike I ride etc… and many times people will ask me “Is that your bike” and I say “No” because I don’t want to sit around talking about or here why they “Don’t like it it” or what person they know died blah blah blah… I don’t pretend I am something I am not, I have 2 bikes I bought on what they offered to me and I liked they way they looked, no “Name loyalty” or such nonsnese nor do I beleive my bike is a Special little thing like its a child of give them female names etc… Ride your damned bikes and stop standing around people.

        • Scott Sweeney

          I talk, a lot. I’ve also ridden 10K since May on one bike. East coast and back. Camped the whole way. Did I earn my right to enjoy doing what I like doing without everyone’s judgement.

          • Mister X

            I don’t know about any “rights” to like something, and someone’s always there to judge us, but in answer to your larger question, I ask you, do you go into extreme detail when sharing tales of your experiences, does it take you 5 minutes to explain how you made your breakfast every morning you were on the road, or do you go into such detail as to note the time of day, or all the items you ate for lunch, and perhaps some lengthy commentary on how the food was, or the waitress, etc., or do you go off on long tangents unrelated to the story at hand, if you do, then you are “one of those guys”, but if you spare the listener the minutia and share the interesting and other high points then you should have no trouble finding willing listeners for your tales, so only you can answer your question my friend.

        • DrRideOrDie

          I sold my car and always referred to “hating the cage” when I had to use it. I refer to cagers as people who live their life going from one comfortable box to another.

        • Mister X

          That’s amusing, I self refer to my mini SUV as “the cage”, but not others vehicles, just mine. I guess it’s because I’d rather be riding than driving at the time, so it feels like a cage to me, and the name stuck.

      • Rotaryknight

        I love to hear stories about their adventures on the bikes rather than their adventures on modding their bikes. It is so much more interesting. Anybody can talk forever about a mod they done, but few that ride have any interesting adventure stories. I agree with the #5, but there are people out there that just care about the bike itself and it is fascinating to them

      • grindz145

        It’s true, the “Bike Night” thing gets played out very quickly. The problem is that there just isn’t that much difference between the majority of bikes that show up to those type of things. Nobody cares about the bolt-on bullshit that you didn’t design or do anything else unique but pay out probably too much coin.

      • Mister X

        I’m in agreement with grb, you’re referring to braggarts, and through that lens I’m in total agreement with you, nobody but the fool stands around listening to the guy who’s telling you “maaaaaan, and then we hit the corner at 140, and wheeeeeee! It was easy…”, or the guy who (like you mentioned Sean) goes into drawn out arcane technical details over mundane things.

        Somewhere I have an ancient VHS tape of a guy up at Alice’s bragging about how his *** bike goes 160, while his girlfriend makes funny faces in the background, priceless!

    • eddi

      Talking about bikes? Lots of fun. Listening to some knuckle-dragging embarrassment to the species (rideus anythingus) droning on and on displaying depths of ignorance that are mind-shattering? Let me out of here!

  • Corey Cook

    #3 This one…
    I cannot adequately explain how much it annoys me.

    • Piglet2010

      When it is a H-D with straight pipes working as resonators, I want to run them over with my pick-em-up truck.

  • fromwork789

    You do realize that you guys essentially make a living by doing number 5, right?

    • Jeffrey Behiels

      My thoughts exactly !

    • Ryan Stewart

      If I’m not on the mountain or at the track I am 5in like a MFer.

      If I can’t be riding beautiful bikes admiring them is the next best thing.

    • minnjohn.advrider

      Exactly, again. Guess we’re all noobs.

    • Khali

      I think that their point is that a biker noob prefers to stand admiring bikes, or talking about bikes, than actually riding bikes.

      • HollywoodRider

        #5 is f-ing ridiculous. I think it was all they could come up. Must have thought if the hed was just ’7 signs…’ no one would read it. Stupid. I still love going to the dealership and looking at the newest crop. Come on guys, if you’re just writing to post more content what’s the point?

      • http://www.twitter.com/seanmacdonald sean macdonald

        admiring and talking about is great. at some point, it’s time to go inside and enjoy the people and the stories they have.

        you all take it too seriously. If you’re going to the event JUST to stand in the parking lot and try and impress people with your knowledge/tips because you cant connect socially otherwise- you fit in this category. If you go to enjoy the event and love to peruse the parking lot – you’re a motorcyclists.

        whole point is – at some point you stop defining yourself by your attendance at these events and your ability to impress people with what you have to say at them and you start just enjoying the event for the nice afternoon it is, just like any of the other things you enjoy doing. THAT’s when you stop being a n00b.

        • DrRideOrDie

          Oh, so when you act like a well developed adult with social aptitude. Got it.

        • captainobvious

          does that make you a noob or just point out your inability to connect socially?

      • Sebastian Koch

        Exactly, they show up in dozens on weekends at certain places when they should be riding (because of the nice weather for example)
        There is one famous spot for blokes like that in Berlin called the “Spinnerbrücke” (Looney Bridge), all they do is drive there on a (sunny) Sunday morning, park their park preferably in a prominent position and eat and stand around for the rest of the day. And then they go home.
        Even though I live just about 10km away I’ve never been there…not my world ;)

        • Cyberwarrior

          maybe if you lived more than 10km away you’d understand

          • Sebastian Koch

            I find it rather ridiculous to just go there and basicly sit around ranting about bikes all day instead of doing what the bikes are made for. And the license plates indicate that most of them haven’t ridden very far to get there.

            • Mariano

              How do you know about the license plates, if you’ve never been there…..

              • Sebastian Koch

                Fairly easy, I can read while passing by….

  • grb

    9. If you need a list to figure out if you’re a biker noob…

  • TP

    I’m guilty of #3 :(. My Buell has a screwy sensor and sometimes stalls if I don’t blip it I swear…

    • Piglet2010

      I had to rev the engine on my Honda Elite (while holding the brakes on) while stopped – think it was bad gas, since I took it out for a 120-mile top speed run* on rural roads, and the problem went away with the new tank of gas.

      * 50 mph – whoo hoo!

    • Justin McClintock

      I’m guilty of #3 on occasion as well. But I have a good excuse….a 1978 DT175. Those things won’t exactly idle forever, regardless of what you did to tune it.

  • Will Mederski

    The only thing I disagree with is the title.
    I know plenty of guys who have been riding for 30+ years who still do all of these things.
    I propose:
    “8 Signs You’re Making Bikers Look Bad”

  • Fred

    hahaha… Absolutely true post.

  • Rameses the 2nd

    Reading this article is like trying to self-diagnose
    yourself for some disease on the Internet. Chances are you will find some
    symptoms that apply to you.

  • grb

    Whats up with point 5? its as lame as the article “How to pose next to a motorcycle”… I love looking at bikes , motorcycle show are pretty cool to walk around. Im not interested in how people set up their bikes or their miss conceptions about it because everyone need its personal settings, and their opinion has nothing to do with what I want or Im looking for in my ride, but Im sure the guys in the MotoGP teams, SBK, Irish Road Racing, etc, etc “spend all day listening to some guy ramble about how much faster adjusting (what ever setting) made him or explaining why he wasn’t as fast as usual at a recent track”

    • ben

      #9 in this list should be: “you pose next to your motorcycle”

      • grb

        exactly, but not as #9, that should be instead of whats on #5

    • http://www.twitter.com/seanmacdonald sean macdonald

      and if it were someone legitimately fast, I’d want to listen. you’re average random sunday meetup though? no thanks.

      i’m not saying none of it’s interesting or cool. just that, when you first get into motorcycling, that’s your favorite thing in the world and you’ll travel super far for the smallest gatherings because you get to finally be one of them. after a while, you learn that you can enjoy without having to prove so much.

      • grb

        Admiring bikes is awesome, I just happen to do ti all the time, since I was 4yrs old. And I hope to never stop loving it… I think, from reading your comments, with which I can mostly agree, that the title for #5 is wrong, but if not then I think we just completely disagree on that one, the other points are about right.

      • Piglet2010

        Yes, the difference between listening to a professional racer break down how to go fast around a track and a bunch of squids bench racing is, to paraphrase Justice Thurgood Marshall, the difference between chicken salad and chicken $hit.

  • ben

    I’m a noob by all accounts and I don’t do any of these things… a better title might be: 8 signs you’re a douche bag.

    • http://www.twitter.com/seanmacdonald sean macdonald

      maybe you’re less of a n00b than you think :)

    • Shannon R

      Noob here too. Yeah, I don’t do these things, I guess we’re doin’ it wrong ben… let’s go to Sbux and stare at eachothers bikes or something. Be sure to leave your gear at home!

  • Dave Minella

    #1 is me. I can’t wear my Italian flag helmet while riding my Honda; it’s only for the Duc. But, at least both of my helmets are high-quality and full-face.

    • http://www.twitter.com/seanmacdonald sean macdonald

      that’s a little different. It’s when you start to sacrifice performance for the right look that it gets to be a little much.

  • Benjamin Reynolds

    I got into the habit of doing #3 when I was riding my carbed 250 around campus on cold days without fully warming it up first. I’d blip it a couple of times before pulling out in front of someone just to make sure it wasn’t going to bog. After it came up to temp, I stopped blipping though.

    • michaelmatos

      Me too. My old 650 sometimes needs a little extra juice when stopped. I’ll slightly twist the throttle to keep the rpm’s over 1,500 until she’s happy.

    • Piglet2010

      I ride my Ninjette around with full choke until the temperature gauge moves off the stop – idles at about 6K rpm. Bloody thing stalls at even half-choke when cold.

      • Benjamin Reynolds

        Yikes, that’s even worse than mine.

  • John Chavez

    Different strokes for different folks, imo. Who gives a fuck what other people do? Don’t like it, don’t do it! It never made much sense to me to sit around bashing people for no obvious reason other than attempt to make themselves look good. That’s all I’m reading in here! In one article RideApart mentions wearing hi-viz gear is a good thing #becausesafetyfirst #bullshit. We all hate that guy revving the shit out of his engine, right? But who am I to judge to lonely SOB who has to get all the attention in the world by annoying fellow riders and drivers? I don’t give a fuck what you do on your bike. Just ride the damn thing and stay the fuck away from me!

    • torr10

      I’m the guy that likes to rev my engine. I do it because I like the way it sounds. So what?

      • John Chavez

        I love the sound of my bike, too. But I have no need to attract unnecessary attention to myself. It’s bad enough riding an orange time-machine around town splitting every car and lane for six miles of stop-and-go traffic.

        • Dan Sciannameo

          If my wife would let me take my 1984 Moto Guzzi LeMans Mk3 in the living room I would rev the engine while watching TV just to hear the LaFranconi Competizione exhaust sound.

        • torr10

          If you were a biker you would know there is no such thing as ‘unnecessary’ attention. Any attention you get can save your life. You also wouldn’t be splitting lanes. If you’re that cautious about the noise why wouldn’t you be a better rider and not split lanes. That’s just a weirdo position…

          • Cyberwarrior

            like I said you’re a tool

          • captainobvious

            whatever, idiot

      • Cyberwarrior

        nothing. You’re a tool and probably will always be one, so that’s that.

        • torr10

          I would rather be a live tool than a dead fool, like you will end up because no one knew you were there…

          • captainobvious

            you’re well on your way to being a live fool

      • Timothy Gray

        This is what engine revving people look like when they do it though…

    • Cyberwarrior

      “Who gives a fuck what other people do? Don’t like it, don’t do it!”
      it’s not quite that simple, simple.

      actions have consequences

  • Scott Pargett

    Funny article. Hope everyone has a good laugh and doesn’t take it too seriously!

    • torr10

      too late…

  • Mark D

    I like tasteful bits of hi-viz gear, but I always lol when I see a guy in his safety-first Hi Viz…cotton t shirt.


    • Rotaryknight

      Please tell me this is a real shirt!!!
      Would love to get one!

      • eddi

        Even if it’s not, some t-shirt shop with an adult attitude to swearing will happily take your money to produce it.

      • Tammy Evans-Ingles

        I have seen them in truck stops in South Carolina. I would love to have one myself LOL

    • Cyberwarrior

      just makes you easier to hit, IMHO

  • chupa

    Must be a slow news day.

  • Dave

    I am super excited that this site will be apparently transforming into Buzzfeed’s Motorcycle category. Eagerly awaiting “10 signs that you ride a 90′s sportbike” and “32 pop stars you never knew were in a motorcycle ad.”

    Edit: (This list really applies more to well experienced terrible riders than new ones IMO.)

  • Stef

    Why all these lists? More feature articles guys! Keep it up.

  • Lourens Smak

    These are all more “poser vs rider” things, than riding-newbie issues, in my opinion… posers are the ones that secretly work their knee-pucks with a file, and who “ride” a 3-year old bike with 3000Km on the odometer. They know all specs of all bikes (well, above 1000cc of course), and love to make remarks about your “beginner” 600cc sportsbike. The highest concentration of posers you’ll find in the summer on a parking lot next to a straight road, with exactly 23 degrees C, zero wind, and nice sunshine. ;-)

    • http://www.twitter.com/seanmacdonald sean macdonald

      that’s kind of what the term n00b implies…

      • Lourens Smak

        okay… I was confusing n00b and newbie, it appears. Learn something every day.

        • eddi

          Newbies learn. n00bs provide horrible examples and funny Youtube videos.

          • http://www.twitter.com/seanmacdonald sean macdonald


        • http://www.twitter.com/seanmacdonald sean macdonald

          not a problem. to the best of my knowledge “n00b” began as a video/computer game term to insult people who made stupid newbie mistakes while fronting as if they were skilled.

          we LOVE new riders and there’s NOTHING wrong with making newbie mistakes. We’ve all made them and they’re how you get better. I’ll always consider myself a newbie, but I never want to be a n00b

          this was very newbie of you. kudos :)

  • Michael Howard

    #9: You go to a website to learn how to be a biker. ;)

  • OneCellOfMany

    a local bike gear shop to me puts on this customer event once a month ..and well…they give us free hot dogs and soda play music and we, THEIR LOYAL CUSTOMERS,….stand around and admire each others bikes…and they all don’t seem to be noobs to me. They seem to be riders who like to ride bikes …and look at them and talk about them with other people who are also interested in bikes. But should I say bike? Or motorcycle? or biker or rider..or oh man its all so complicated. I’m just a newbie.Please don’t hate me.

    • Joe Bielski

      I love those free hotdogs!!!

    • Michael

      They do that in Orange Park also

      • aircraftmech

        At the Beemer or the ‘other’ dealer across the street?

        • Michael

          FPSU on Blanding

    • torr10

      I hate you noob…

  • http://www.twitter.com/seanmacdonald sean macdonald

    Nothing wrong with having a little fun. The guy I was behind on the freeway the other day pulled in his clutch to rev his engine with each and ever car he passed.

    It can get excessive.

  • Guest

    Are you really siding with those idiots in NYC?!?

    • http://www.twitter.com/seanmacdonald sean macdonald

      Sarcasm my friend.

      • torr10

        No it wasn’t sarcasm….it was clearly stated.

    • torr10

      Are you really asking a stupid question? Go read it again…and this time pretend you know English.

  • http://www.themotolady.com/ MotoLady

    The first two literally brought me to tears with laughter. “SUN’S OUT, GUNS OUT!” hahahahaha. Oh man.

  • Michael Ali

    Great Article. Thanks! :)

  • kristennikco

    I never understood why someone cant just have a personal passion for bikes without having to fall under someone else’s preconceived notion of what is acceptable and not acceptable. If I want to match my helmet to my bike, why does that make you a better rider than me? If I want to travel through a populated city with my biker friends and enjoy sightseeing, you are suddenly cooler because you choose to ride in the country?The only thing I learned from this article is the author should spend less time passing judgment towards others who share different viewpoints and spend more time realizing they, too, are viewed as a sheep by others who chose not to be so obnoxiously vocal.

    • Robert Horn

      Good thing you aren’t being judgemental about the author!

      • kristennikco

        Personally, I think I was more judgmental than judgemental. But thanks for your valuable input.

        • torr10

          oooooo…and the Ms. Perfect Grammar police strikes yet again…

          • Robert Horn

            Judgemental/judgmental – it is a grey area in spelling. Good thing she isn’t whinging!

            • Piglet2010

              Sure it is not a gray area?

        • Mister X

          If you’re that pedantic when talking bikes, then you just may be “one of those gals”, or not, you may just be defensive right now.

          But whichever it is, I am with you when it comes to folks riding and wearing whatever they want, as long as it’s on 2 (OK, 3) wheels, I’m good, we are all kin.

    • http://ericrshelton.com/ Eric R. Shelton

      I don’t think a lot of this was intended as a “this is okay, but that is not” type of deal. Matching the helmet to the bike, for example. Do some of us do it? Sure. I ride an R1200R and replaced my XD-3 with a Schuberth C3 Pro. But I took it as more of a gentle ribbing and encouragement to be oneself rather than lock into a riding stereotype. Heck, he even pointed out being judgmental of other riders in #7 as being kind of lame. I know it’s just text on a page and there’s no tone of voice to convey mood, but try re-reading it in better humor and I’ll bet it irks you less.

      • http://www.twitter.com/seanmacdonald sean macdonald

        a little reason goes a long way. that’s why i specifically gave the example of wishing you could wear a full face because, but feeling like you weren’t allowed to because you rode a cafe or bobber. i see too many dudes wrapped in scarves who still show up miserable because it’s too cold out and the STILL won’t be seen in a full face.

        I love wearing an adv helmet on dual sports or race helmets on sport bikes, bikes are emotional objects and aesthetics should matter (some). but there’s no way i’m wearing an open face helmet in the rain or across country just because it fits the style of my bike.

        • http://metabomber.com/ Jesse

          Rolling a dirty little bobber? Dualsport helmet. Keep ‘em guessing.

    • Cyberwarrior

      because some people are a-holes

  • aergern


  • Jase Mathieu G

    My guns are out, year round nearly everyday for the last 22 years, even after “incidents”. I think I look like a brown and scarred Steve McQueen. When I don’t rev (at a cold stutter) my ’77 CB400F (Super Sport) or my ’89 CB400F die. My helmet bridges the ages of said motorcycles in aesthetic and patina. My style IS the best style of motorcycling (though I’d own/do others if I could)… Why did I even read this article? My very motorcycling existence, grotesque and incomprehensible as it may be, shouldn’t matter to anyone else but myself. Pass me or stay WAY behind but please just STAY AWAY (car or bike).

  • Piglet2010

    1. Well, I wear a Bell Star at the track, a Bell Vortex (with furry ears) for distance riding, a Bell Revolver EVO around town, and a Fly Trekker on the TW200.

    3. I only rev the engine a lot if there is a Prius or driver’s ed car in the next lane.

    6. I traded down from a F4i to a pre-gen Ninjette.

  • jpan08

    When you pull up to you destination (school) and you think you’re badass until you realize you’ve forgot to shut off your blinker about a mile back… guilty =(

  • torr10

    The only thing here that offends me is that we have to call those jackasses in the pic above ‘bikers’. They are exactly what gives us all bad names. Wonder how different that would have ended if it had been in a town where law abiding citizens are allowed to carry weapons.

    • Piglet2010

      Those are squids, not bikers.

    • eddi

      Now, now. Let’s not waste ammo. A nailboard will do the job and is recyclable.

    • Justin McClintock

      Torr, I’ve wondered the same myself. Try that crap here in Atlanta and eventually they’d wind up shot. Probably sooner rather than later.

  • Fresh Mint

    I’m pretty sure the only reason this site exists is because there are people that take part in #5.

    Some of the articles on this site are really lame – are you guys running out of content or what?

    Write a story about tow vehicles that are actually fun to drive (not trucks/SUVs)

  • changzer

    i’d rather choose my helm based on where/why i’m riding… ex. full face for traveling long distances (might go +80mph), and open helm for downtown weekly showoff (might not go over 40mph) :P

  • Street Kore

    This reads more like “You might be a motorcycle Hipster. ” Which I consider even worse then a Noob. Noobs can be taught. Hipsters are hopeless and need to be strung up to their wannabe machine and drug down the street. But maybe I’m being a little cynical…?

  • Peter Chen

    it would also be useful to have a N00B article about (1) when/who to greet on-coming traffic while riding (2) what (not to do) when waiting for traffic light?

  • Nick

    #7: Those guys who spend more time yammering on constantly seeking to define what is and isn’t cool all the while believing they somehow magically fit in the category of a “true/pure rider”. Does it bring an unrelenting overpowering smile to your face? Yes? Then just shut up, ride, and enjoy it man, never mind the bollocks.

  • Ninja, Please


  • hansdirty

    just bought a car

  • ThinkingInImages

    I think you missed “outriggers”. These are the new riders who keep their feet down and legs spayed out way too long when moving slowly – like outriggers or training wheels.

    • Michael Howard

      That’s not just n00bs – many “experienced” riders still do this because they’ve never learned how to ride slowly and do low-speed u-turns.

    • Mark Vizcarra

      Usually they are duck walking or waddling around

    • HollywoodRider

      Exactly, swap this with #5.

  • Jin Tee

    Now sit back and watch the page impressions roll in. Nice.

  • Stig Sarangi

    may i post a video from the sunday ride that we made.. 375 bikes, not a single range rover and all this in India..


  • wackydan

    “Biker n00b: “Wait, you chose to wear a neon colored jacket?”

    Yes I do wear an Olympia Neon yellow and black Jacket… Do people see me more? Dunno for sure, but here in the south that jacket is a heck of a lot cooler in the sun then any black jacket I ever wore. Make fun of me all you want, been riding long enough that I’ve had enough people make off colored comments on my bikes, etc… Just ride man.

    • http://www.twitter.com/seanmacdonald sean macdonald

      that was my point. that and that they honestly wouldnt understand why’d you want to be seen. (something it usually takes a close call or two to learn)

      • wackydan

        Ahh… At first pass I missed the context. :) Thanks for the reply.

  • Tony Prior

    Very true article. Go to Vietnam, many women there are proper bikers – they ride in any weather, everyday of the year, they don’t care about CC’s and they don’t have a huge chip on their shoulder.

    Motorcycles are enjoyable transport – nothing more, nothing less. If you think it’s a lifestyle – you’re over thinking it.

  • Khali

    I think you are a noob when you believe you are not. There is always so much to learn.

  • Justin McClintock

    I’m right, you’re wrong, my way’s best, yours is horrible, my bike rocks, yours is crap, my gear is perfect for everything, yours is over the top and dangerous at the same time, and chicks dig my scars more. Or something like that…

  • Mr.Paynter


  • Sky Woodman

    How about just riding and trying not to get hit.

  • Justin McClintock

    Dude, it was a sarcastic comment aimed at the fact that the bikers were riding around completely randomly and they couldn’t even predict what each other were doing, let alone expect somebody else to predict what one of them might do.

    But way to over react for your lack of understanding the sarcasm. Does provide the rest of us with good entertainment.

  • Davidabl2

    It must be said that #5 is a different experience if the bike is older than the rider.. even more so if the bike’s older than the rider and the listener’s ages combined. Like the 1919 Pope I saw at an AMCA ride last year ;-)

  • Mark Vizcarra

    You forgot about the duckwalk. That is when you know if the guy riding is a noob or not. Nevermind somebody beat me to it.

    • cloroxbb

      Its funny, but even during the MSF course, I never had to “duckwalk.” I found it extremely easy to keep the bike balanced during initial takeoff from a stop. I am as much of a noob as you can be right now. I don’t even own a bike and haven’t even gotten my endorsement on my license yet. The ONLY riding I have done was during the MSF course last month…

  • Reid

    A better title might be “Eight signs you’re a motorcycle douchebag” rather than a “n00b.” Speaking from experience, my main n00b-giveaway is leaving a blinker on too long after I’ve turned or changed lanes.

  • El Isbani

    Downshifting in the middle of a turn so that the back tire skids.

  • LS650

    When I was a n00b, I only did #5. Then again, I still do #5.

  • Sally

    Pathetic article on riding/riders obviously written by some tool who might own a motorcycle, but most certainly doesn’t ride one. I expect more from you morons.

  • Steve m.

    “Shocking that the Range Rover driver couldn’t predict the motorcyclists next move, right?”
    Wide open road in front of the “thug” (don’t even want to call this guy a biker). Why should the SUV think he’s going to stop?

    • http://www.twitter.com/seanmacdonald sean macdonald

      he shouldn’t. 100% sarcasm. part of why we ride in formation is so car drives can predict our moves and not run over us.


      • Steve m.

        Ah, the sarcasm was totally lost on me. I should have known better!

        • http://www.twitter.com/seanmacdonald sean macdonald

          sorry, i’ll try and be snarkier to make it more obvious :)

  • Damien Gaudet

    Replace, “Noob” with, “Douche”.

  • Paul Bruinz

    My last statement was intended exactly how it was written. If you are stupid enough to get in front of my vehicle and commence in some sort of aggressive driving in front of my vehicle as this motorcyclist did you are going to get what you get. You sound like a good rider like I consider myself so you were not who I was directing the statement too. I guess you missed my point and I missed you’re sarcasm. I’ve been riding motorcycles for 24 years and I have participated in many rider coarse for advanced handling techniques and safer ridding practices. Anyway though I am sure this frustrates all of us motorcyclist that take what we like to do serious. Now what will happen in response to this mishap? Will rider groups be restricted to group of five only or three riders only? Such a bummer that this even took place.

  • A Smith

    #9. You actually think “loud pipes are safer.”

    Flame away!

  • john munro

    Hahahaha! So true.. Except some people stay that way for years..

  • Matthew Wakefield

    Wait, number 1? I totally do that. Except theyre all full face. Fly Trekker for the Dakar, Full face matte black for the Harley, and a motocross helmet for the dirtbike.

  • Cyberwarrior

    there’s safety in numbers, dood
    I don’t think this has anything to do with being a “noob”. A biker GOOB maybe.

    But noobs are inexperienced ignorant wanna-bes who actually own a bike.

    Goobs are experienced bikers who still act and ride like idiots.

    The biggest problem I have with this is first of all open-face is idiotic (you’ll figure that out when you get hit in the face enough) and masses of bikes parking all over the place is the first step towards general hooliganism on the street. If you get enough bikes in one place its anarchy.

  • Cyberwarrior

    …you might be a noob if you don’t know what a noob is…

  • John

    So true.

  • Stacy

    don’t most people who ride motorcycle enjoy standing around talking about them too? #5 makes no sense…

  • A Freeman

    If you’ve had your bike for more than a year and you have less than 3K miles on it, you’re a noob. Shut yer pie hole and get out and ride!

  • The Big Ducati

    You might be a noob if you write snotty articles on what makes some people noobs. You we’re being a little bit hypocritical.. just a bit.

  • Jim Scobie

    There is this guy in my neighborhood who has an older zx-10. He revs his engine as often as he possibly can. Every stop sign in the subdivision.

  • John

    You forgot to add that you drive around with your legs dangling off the pegs because you’re afraid you might tip over.

  • RandomGRK

    It’s hilarious how many people take this seriously…must be biker Noobs! ;)

  • Mister X

    Guilty of numbers 4 & 5. I’ve ridden to Alice’s Restaurant 3 times to meet friends for B-fast in the last 40 years, but usually I was going by solo much earlier than the squid crowd, and the San Mateo M/C show was all about standing around looking at/talking motorcycles.

    So I’m a n00b, yay! So are all my decades long riding buddies.

  • wbarrettpowell

    My 8 Signs Your a Noob…

    1) You don’t ask for help, even when you need it

    2) The rear brake is your friend…your ONLY friend

    3) Your rear tire wear pattern is a 4″ wide strip down the middle

    4) You have more chrome than a Harley…and your on a GSXR

    5) Your swing arm is more like a swing bridge (long)

    6) Your wearing a $50 helmet and tennis shoes but a $500 jacket

    7) LEDs were made for you, and you for them…everywhere

    8) You can’t understand why road markings and mid corner breaking aren’t looked more fondly

  • acthard

    how bout you ride what the fuck you want how you want, life is short so fuck off