To my fellow Western North Carolina motorcycle riders: It's time to stop with the waving. It's foolish and, arguably, unsafe. I mean, riders are waving to each other across interstate medians now.
First of all, that “left hand outstretched” gesture is a left-turn signal to those of us from the old school who ride bikes [but don’t use] those dangerous turn signals. Yes, I mean "dangerous," due to the impression you give when they're forgotten and left flashing. I've never forgotten to put my arm back down after a turn. Bikes don't have auto-canceling turn signals.
This "Hey bro, down low" waving nonsense conditions cagers (car drivers) to disregard hand signals. There are also enough curves and hills around here that, outside of indicating a turn, two hands on the bars is probably a good policy to embrace and demonstrate to fellow motorists.
Further, this faux camaraderie is a total affectation. Motorcycles are now so stone-reliable that anybody in the world can own and ride one without truly loving the machines or culture. It's no exclusive club. There is no "brotherhood" left.
It used to be that if you broke down (and that used to happen with unfortunate regularity) the next guy on a bike would stop to help, and a friendship would often develop between two unconventional souls with common experiences and outlooks. Now we have nifty cellphones.
I've been riding for decades, and if your bike's newer than 20 years old, I probably don't share anything with you but two wheels, a goofy plastic bowl strapped to my head and license endorsement. Yes, I feel newbies have hijacked a subculture that was once colorful, fun and significant to me. Yes, I think I'm too cool to associate with you guys. Yes, I know that makes me a big old grouchy jerk.
So why on earth are you still waving at me?
— Norman Plombe