Motorcycle Love: “You live in a box, you drive a box, you work in a box. When you get on those two wheels . . .”

Slate has a video series called “Interviews: 50 cents”, in which they have random “man on the street” conversations with people. Slate recently went to the Pomona Fair in Southern California and did an interview with a heterosexual couple into Harley Davidson motorcyles. You can find the interview here under the title, “Love on a Harley”. There was something that the guy said in the interview that I found to be both profound and a clear explanation of the appeal of motorcycles, so I wrote it down:

You live in a box, you drive a box, and you work in a box. When you get on those two wheels, it’s just—wow!—you could have had the biggest problem in your life, and you get on that Harley, and just that wind hitting you is like, all your problems are gone!

I love that. The Harley as a form of contact with the transcendent: a direct encounter with the ontological mystery (mystery of being) in the wind. His comment also reminded me of this saying, attributed to Jesus, in the Gospel of St. John (3:8 KJV):

The wind bloweth where it listeth, and thou hearest the sound thereof, but canst not tell whence it cometh, and whither it goeth: so is every one that is born of the Spirit.

About Santi Tafarella

I teach writing and literature at Antelope Valley College in California.
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