TG Newsletter: THE DISTINGUISHED GENTLEMAN'S RIDE
THE DISTINGUISHED GENTLEMAN'S RIDE:
(27 September 2020)
The 2020 DGR theme was to RIDE SOLO, TOGETHER
With the advent of the dreaded Corona virus, and many countries still in a form of lockdown, it was decided that no mass participation events should be conducted. Following the rules of social distancing and regular sanitizing, all the DGR-gentle-folk were encouraged to ride on their own (a virtual mass ride), still dressing dapper and looking all smart. It was the year we would show the world that no matter how disconnected our bodies were, are hearts were still devoted to the good cause of raising awareness and money for research into prostate cancer.
The definition of VIRTUAL:
Almost as described, but not completely according to strict definition. Not physically existing as such but made to appear to do so.
In Pretoria, a small group of friends decided to do a short ride around town. Virtual motorcycling still entails a vibrating clunk of metal under your derriere. Our numbers were low. Our bikes were smoking. Our smiles were genuine. Our cravats were dusty.
This year in South Africa, we still had around 283 registered riders who donated R60 000.
We can change an ugly reality like cancer in a real way or in a virtual way! And because it is much easier, people prefer the virtual path and thus the real ugliness continues to remain. By donating, you physically contribute to the research and knowledge built up to fight this sickness. Man up, and put your money where your keyboard is – MAKE A REAL DONATION NEXT YEAR!
You will be astounded to hear that since the first run in 2012, the DGR has collected R380mil by 316 000 riders in 104 countries.
Herewith a few techniques of presenting oneself as a gentleman or a lady motorcyclist:
Walking: When walking in motorcycle boots, walk with your feet hip-width apart. The most common mistakes made when walking in boots is to swing arms too heavily and stomping loudly as to announce one’s own entry
The Tar Road Glide: When riding, avoid gripping the handlebars tightly and rather relax your shoulders and upper arms. Keep your chin parallel to the road and look ahead of you. Look down only at the very end of the road to scan for any possible danger. No bouncing or ‘clunking’ of feet while shifting gear. If a gentleman is riding with you, he should preferable ride in front of you to avoid riding over you, should you come down
Seating: Turn toes slightly inwards so they are facing the bash plate as you ride. Riding with toes outwards, other riders might perceive you a member of a motorcycle club established by toads
Crashing: Avoid flailing arms, and preferably wait until dust has settled before assuming the upright position again
The Slant: A lady should sit with her knees embracing the tank. Knees should only lose contact with a motorcycle’s reservoir when attempting to overtake a gentleman courteously around a corner
Tea: To hold a teacup, pinch beneath the top of the handle with your thumb and index finger and support the handle with your middle finger. If ‘tea’ is consumed out of a beer canister, place four fingers around the can with the thumb in the opposable direction. Do not use the fingers of the other hand to circle the top of the can. This would be deemed suggestive; rather drink the beer than play with it.
Greetings: In business situations, a handshake is the correct form of greeting. Using your right hand, the webs (between the thumb and index finger) should touch, and pump twice with a firm grip. For social situations, a hearty hug with both arms wrapped around the other person. Make sure hands are not closed in a fist, but both open palms lightly patting the back of the hugee. In some social circles, a kiss may be practiced. Ensure lips are dry and contact is limited to 3 milliseconds. If contact lingers, expect the surface of an open flat palm connecting a cheek
Helmet Etiquette: Firstly, we call it a helmet and not a skid lid, or a brain bucket. When holding a helmet, place arm through the peep-hole or lock the clasp and hang it by the straps on the ends of your fingers. Never clutch a helmet with oily fingers by the visor
Dismounting Motorcycles: Gracefully extend the left leg till contact with the road service is stable and steady. Lift the right leg over the back of the motorcycle just enough for a mouse whisper to breeze between your knee and the pillion seat. Inspired by the ‘extend and swivel’ method, which was created by legendary Steve McQueen
Please note that next year’s event will be held on:
23 May 2021
Dust those tweeds and polish those pips, DGR is coming!
Unlike cancer, death is the only disease everyone is guaranteed to get. But usually only once… Usually only once…
Richard Harper for some of the photos
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