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Travels With An Airhead

New Bike Fever

— by Notch Miyake

New bike fever is a disease like malaria. Once bitten by the bug, the fever recurs periodically, causing severe strain to one's financial health and marital relationships. There are no known cures, although the symptoms can be controlled if caught in time.

What brings on attacks is not well understood. Some people can go merrily on for years without ever thinking about a new motorcycle. Then suddenly, while standing in front of the motorcycle magazine display at the supermarket, the victim feels the urge to look over the new models.

An hour later, having completely forgotten what he went to the supermarket for, he leaves with at least five bike magazines. You can imagine the dismay of his family when he returns home without the toilet paper.

On the other extreme, some people (you know who you are) cannot go into a motorcycle dealership without buying the latest model. They see a new bike on the floor and it's an instant attack.

These guys say things like, "I had to have it. You see how they integrated the oil coolers with the fairing? It looks 100% better."

The symptoms of the disease are a glazed look, constant perusal of motorcycle magazines and catalogs, preoccupation with numbers preceded by "$" or followed by the initials "cc", and making statements like "You know, it's not so bad, a cruise around the world costs a lot more," or "So what if a brand new car costs less? It's only a Hyundai."

The only way to control the fever is to distract the victim until the attack passes. Since the disease seems to only afflict males, wild sex works pretty well. However, be sure to observe reasonable safety precautions. After all, you don't ride without a helmet, do you? And you can get a much worse disease from unsafe sex.

This also helps to explain why mostly older guys buy new BMW's. Luckily, recent medical advances can help even these unfortunate victims. In the event of an attack of new bike fever for those older than late middle age; immediately take two Viagra tablets and go to bed. With your wife. I'm sure she will be glad to cooperate just to prevent the purchase of another motorcycle.

I recently suffered an attack of new bike fever. I looked at all the new BMW models, collected the catalogs and magazines, and did an Internet search.

I didn't have any Viagra, so I made a deal on a vintage bike. O.K., so I paid ten times what the thing cost brand new. But who needs a world cruise? Or a brand new Hyundai for that matter? And I need a bike with a kick-starter, in case I have a dead battery.

A new bike won't cure new bike fever, but it sure makes you feel better.

— Copyright © 2002 by Notch Miyake.

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