Again, after spending more time than is necessary in cars (only because I've been ferrying motorcycle parts around) and wondering why you see herds of motorcyclists huddled under flyovers, trees or any other patch that avoids wetness, I've decided to revisit the 'motorcycles vs cars' debate. I've come to appreciate cars more - honestly, I always have and there's nothing wrong with - just that they're just too much fun to make fun of. Even more so because Rohin turns a very endearing shade of red when I do so. Heckling aside, here are a few more observations that a combination of rains, cars and motorcycles have brought to my notice, repetitive as they might be.
I love being in a car, especially when it's raining, with the AC running and my music providing a superb background to the conversation I'm having with someone I can actually talk to. That is totally at odds with me on a motorcycle - I don't like talking and I certainly don't like passengers who rob me of precious power and ideal balance. It's that much more personal. When I drive, I transform into a tiptoeing-through-puddles guy. When I'm riding, I splash through them with a happy acceptance. It makes me a bit more tolerant. When I say that motorcyclists are the more peaceful lot, there is a reason. During that two weeks that I was strangling a steering wheel, I understood what drivers go through in the city - they share the road with drivers of three types: ill-mannered, inconsiderate and downright stupid. Many times, they tend to be all those things at once. And I suspect it's only because bikers get to where they're going much faster, while drivers can only watch grass grow around their four wheels.
Motorcyclists, on the whole, are certainly more relaxed. Except, of course, when they about to be run over by one of the types mentioned above. Or when it starts raining. When it's dry, they filter through gaps, always get pole position at traffic lights and are generally as handy in traffic as F16s in a dogfight. But when it rains, all of them dive under the nearest shelter they can find. And watch as cars catch up and pass, their occupants pointing fingers and laughing, supreme in their dry shells. It's all so very amusing. But I understand - sitting in the chillingly cold space in our office after getting wet in the rain isn't much fun.
But driving and riding a variety of machines has brought yet another angle to this story, and this is where the comparison becomes a bit more direct. How about handling? My R15 is a scaled-down handling version of any sportsbike you can think of. Does the average sedan handle as well as a Ferrari? I don't think so. Is there a four-wheeled thing that can replicate the experience of riding a Bullet? Don't say Ambassador or I will find you and whack you on the head with a Bullet's silencer (I have a spare one now) until I'm sure that you will hear that ringing thump in your head for the rest of your life. Heck, 'motorcycle' just plain sounds so much more meaningful than 'car'. But if there's a 450 bhp cage, you can safely bet that I'm willing to be imprisoned in it. And that's what I've done for the forthcoming issue of the magazine - check out the Audi RS5 road test in the July issue of BSM.
And dear drivers, I'm not being rude, really - just saying something about nothing at all. However, don't bother looking for me under any flyovers.