What if motorcycles didn’t exist? It’s almost inconceivable, really – ridiculous, even. Motorcycles have been a part of our existence for over a century now, so trying to picture our lives without our wonderful two-wheeled mechanisms seems like a big ask. But what if we just try to picture it for a few moments? What do we get? Read on, and let’s explore some of the theoretical ramifications of life without motorcycles.
In North America, motorcycles are mostly recreational, while in Europe and developed countries, they are both recreational and serious modes of transportation. In other parts of the world, however, they are transportation first and foremost. If you have not seen photos or videos of entire families (sometimes of four or five…maybe even six) on what we would consider the most rudimentary of motorcycles, then be advised that this is very much a reality for many people. In less extreme examples, though, they represent an efficient, cheap way to help people get from point A to point B. They are also vital to certain work forces as well.
Without a motorcycle, that reality would disappear and many people would be left having to find alternate transportation. Cars require more storage space, more fuel, and more money to obtain and maintain, so they are not an option for many. Life automatically becomes more difficult for quite a lot of people. Imagine that your only options are public transportation, or your own two feet. Life would probably get pretty tiring in a hurry. And if a motorcycle is very helpful in getting a specific job done, that job just gets harder.
Can you imagine life without motorcycle ambulances? In several countries, motorcycles are bona fide life savers. In Africa, they are used to transport medical supplies to remote areas and to transport people to medical facilities where they can get the attention they need. Motorcycles are small, light, able to go where cars sometimes can’t, and are relatively easy to maintain, so they make the perfect mounts for this purpose. Without them, some people would simply die, because…well…that’s what happens if you don’t get the health care you need.
In some other countries where situations aren’t as dire, paramedics and other emergency units still employ motorcycles to great effect because of their relatively rapid response. They can be fitted with essential first aid equipment found in conventional ambulances such as defibrillators. That response combined with practicality means motorcycles are very useful medical tools. Imagine your life is in danger and a motorcycle is the only thing that can get to you and give you a fighting chance fast enough…except that it doesn’t actually exist. What happens to you then?
We can safely say, then, that motorcycles have a definite place in the world as serious tools and that they are extremely helpful in many ways. Even when motorcycles aren’t used in a serious, practical sense, they still have tremendous merit.
Pop culture takes a big hit if you take motorcycles away. We wouldn’t be able to enjoy movies such as Biker Boyz, or Torque, or…wait…never mind. Rather, without motorcycles we would never have had those ultra-cool Tron light cycles, CHiPs, or Street Hawk. How would have Hilts had a glimmer of a chance at making it across the border in The Great Escape without a motorcycle? Ewan McGregor and Charley Boorman would have never gone most of the way around the world…two ways. No Marlon Brando in The Wild One, no Easy Rider…nothing. We’d just be stuck with all the standard car chases. Yeah, there are tons of great car chase scenes out there, but think of all the great motorcycle scenes we’d miss.
Without motorcycles, motorsports becomes a little less varied. There are several national motorcycle racing series around the globe, let alone the major international series. There are some fabulous four-wheeled racing series out there and other interesting motorized competition that doesn’t take place on dry land, but no motorsport really marries person and machine in the close, visceral manner that competitive motorcycle sport does. It could be MotoGP, it could be hill climbing, it could be trails riding, it could be NHRA drag racing, or it could be something as local as moto-gymkhana. There’s something fun and awesome about all of them, and we’d miss all of that if motorcycles didn’t exist. Life without the Isle of Man TT? No. Thank. You.
If motorcycles didn’t exist, we would be short one of the most enjoyable, satisfying and therapeutic pastimes around. We’d probably find something else to do and we’d probably end up just fine in some other way, but what would have the same ability to thrill us and soothe us in equal measures? There is something unspoken about this pastime that makes us choose it over others. Even though we may not always be able to put it into words or explain it to others (the latter is a bit of a futile exercise, anyway), we know it within ourselves.
If motorcycles didn’t exist, you wouldn’t be reading this right now.
That’s a lot of hypothetical scenarios. Whichever way you slice it, a lack of motorcycles makes for an entirely different world – one that would definitely be a lot harder to live in. Motorcycles have enriched our world in terms of both practicality and sheer enjoyment. It’s pretty much impossible to measure how much. So, be sure to reflect not only on what that two-wheeled contraption has given your life, but your world.
What would you miss if motorcycles didn’t exist? Let us know below![fbcomments]