Squids are well known as a source of mockery in the biking world. Many will make huge mistakes with motorcycles, from how to ride them to failure in following basic safety procedures. Many squids will utilize mods that make their bikes look ridiculous. There’s also how they fail to accept realities most bikers know are necessary for any good biking experience. Squids will miss such obvious bits of biker life as what to wear and how to drive—even to what kind of bike looks good.
There’s a lot to be said about their beliefs but a major thing about squids is how they tend to buy into so many of the urban legends of motorcycles. And we don’t mean the classic “ghost stories” or the “Elvis left a bike in a garage” yarns; rather, there are the urban myths and legends of biking that squids tend to accept more than everyone around them.
Some of these urban legends are about how to ride in general, with squids treating silly superstitions like they're rules of the road and often taking things far more seriously than actual biking laws. Often, they’ll take the wrong advice and accept it as being something every biker believes in. Sometimes, it’s truly amazing what kind of things they’ll believe, even to the point of buying into “news” stories about rules that don’t exist.
Here are 20 urban legends of motorcycles squids believe in that show why it’s so easy to mock them so much.
A major reason squids are laughed at by the majority of the biker community is how they’ll so easily believe tall tales that most bikers know are false. It is so well known that it’s very easy to convince squids that truckers and bikers are mortal enemies. True, some truckers have problems with bicycle riders, issues which are well documented. But that doesn’t shift over to motorcyclists, as they and truckers tend to get along okay thanks to both sharing time on the road. An easy way to spot a squid at a truck stop is when they're trying to pick a scuffle with a trucker who barely acknowledges them. The idea of a huge “feud” between the two sides is just another myth.
Squids are infamous for being far more lax about safe driving than experienced bike riders. They’ll be prone to doing crazy stunts when they can barely handle a regular drive and engage in other silly moves in their riding—which is why it’s odd that squids seem to think bikes can be prone to spontaneous combustion. It seems to be driven by the odd case of an electric motor lighting up, which usually isn’t a problem with most bikes. And yet, a lot of squids seem to think that a bike can take one hit and it has to be dumped before it becomes dangerous. The actual number of bikes pales next to automobiles that have caught ablaze but squids still think motorcycles can have it happen from a minor scrape.
Most bikers know that one has to take the same safety measures driving in any area. Sadly, squids tend to believe that regular streets are perfectly okay to drive on and it’s only on the interstate that they have to worry about things. This has been proven wrong by numerous statistics that show almost ninety percent of motorcycle accidents a year occur on non-interstate roadways. Many of those happen on simple intersections and can be blamed on speeding. In fact, highways are far safer for bikers thanks to better patrols and designated lanes. And yet, squids think they can drive wildly on a regular street and be fine when the reality says otherwise and puts them, and other drivers, at risk.
Squids are prone to mods and hacks they think are truly awesome but everyone else knows are terrible. One of the worst is their insistence on huge and loud pipes for their bikes. This is going off the idea that if a bike’s exhaust pipes are loud, it will warn drivers of their approach and thus, be a good early indicator sign that a motorcycle is approaching, so it’s helpful for other drivers. Most drivers find the noises annoying to the extreme and can’t stand the rumbling. Meanwhile, other bikers know how loud pipes just harm their engine and should be avoided. That squids still cling to “louder is better” is a very foolish urban legend that just won’t fade out.
Squids sometimes have odd ideas of what life on the road can truly be like. This makes them prone to buying into some foolish urban legends and tall tales. One of the biggest is the story that’s gone around for decades of a biker on a dark road seeing two headlights ahead of him. He decided to drive ahead and scare what he thought were two cyclists riding side by side. Too late, he discovered it was just one truck. While it’s a funny tale, the truth is that any biker with a brain can easily tell the difference between a single car’s headlights and two motorcycles. The odds of two bikers in perfect symmetry are nearly impossible so only a squid could believe this tale.
Every experienced rider knows that leather has been a mainstay of bikers for a reason: it stands up better than regular clothing in case of a spill and has been known to save a few bikers from worse injury when they do make a mistake while riding. Sadly, squids tend to think the only reason to wear leather is to look good, which will lead to the sight of them riding in jeans, t-shirts, and even just sandals and shorts. This is foolish on more levels than one can count. The myth appears to be that leather only belongs to motorcycle club members and should be avoided for “casual” bikers. In reality, it should be a must for any biker rather than treated as just a fashion statement.
There are some squid mentalities can be absolutely silly beyond belief. One of the biggest is the idea that motorcycle riding is an easy thing. Too many squids believe it’s no different than a bicycle and that it takes just an hour or two before they can get going like a biker crew member. This is akin to thinking playing a video game makes you ready to handle a NASCAR race. This leads to the foolish stunts that squids try too often and, of course, then they get into bad scrapes. While most drivers accept that it takes a while to master driving a car, squids think practice isn’t as necessary to handle a motorcycle, an urban legend which is downright dangerous.
When a biker chooses their first bike, it can be a challenge. A smart biker knows it’s good to pick a good but not overly terrific bike. That helps them get into riding and it can be a dependable cycle until they get something better. Squids, however, will jump into buying their expensive dream bike as their first purchase. They’ll ignore the challenges of riding it, the issues of its upkeep, and more and assume they can handle it fine. It’s a feeling that somehow they’ll “grow into” the bike and never have to buy another one again. It’s a silly idea but it still remains because squids will think the “perfect” bike has to be the first one.
The rear pegs are often ignored on a bike. Usually, they’re just used for a passenger and not much else. Yet squids tend to cling to the idea that riding with the pegs down if you don’t have a passenger is a good thing to do. It ties into the old stories of how a ghost or gremlin could easily latch onto the back of the bike and hitch a ride. There’s also how it helps the bike flow better without those pegs in the way. There’s no real proof that riding with the pegs down helps at all, yet it remains. Like many legends tied in with ghost stories, this is dismissed by real bikers and just makes a squid look more foolish on the road.
Here’s a legend that, to be fair, even some non-squids do buy into. Before the movie of the same name, Gremlins were often mentioned by mechanics in various fields. They’re little invisible creatures who love to cause mayhem with machines. Pilots and drivers alike enjoy blaming gremlins for some sudden breakdown. There are also the claims of spirits who populate various roads across the globe. Guardians bells are thus used to ward them off. A few bikers go so far as to have theirs blessed for better protection. Many bikers actually see it more as decoration than fighting the evil spirits but it’s a legend that squids still buy into.
An easy way to spot a squid is when they refuse to have a green motorcycle. They can be offered the most amazing bike on the planet but if it’s a shade of green, they’ll turn it down. It seems to go back to how military motorcycles were a huge target in WWII. There’s also how green itself has been seen as an unlucky color going back centuries. Indeed, many racers cling to this idea, not wanting to use green on their rides. Many bikers do ignore that trend and love to show rides, like a beautiful green Kawasaki, off. Yet squids will maintain that a green bike is a red light to ride on the roads.
Squids tend to take safety far lighter than serious bikers. Nothing proves that more than the downright silly idea that helmets are more of a hindrance than a help. A major claim among squids is that helmets can cause brain damage in a spill far more severely than going without them. Plus, there's some foolish notion that just wearing them for long periods on a bike can cause pain. It’s been proven countless times how helmets have saved numerous lives and prevented major injuries. Yet, somehow, squids continue to insist that they’re better off without them. No motorcycle urban legend has caused as many problems as thinking a helmet is just a fashion accessory.
It’s baffling just where some of these urban legends came from in the first place. Many existed long before the internet but the rise in technology has helped spread them out more. Among them is the mentality that when a new tire is bought, it has a special coating fresh from the factory. Thus, a new bike owner has to ride them, often underinflated, to get the coating off. This is completely untrue, as the “shine” of a new tire is just because it’s so fresh from the factory. There is no such coating and running the bike with underinflated tires is a sure way to cause them damage right off the bat. The best way to handle a new tire is just to run them like any other.
This is one of those legends that sticks to regular car drivers and has spread to bikers, as well. One can blame the movies on this as, thanks to scores of films, the idea has come about that race tires automatically transform any vehicle into a machine ready for the Indy 500. Bikers aren’t immune, assuming that slapping on high priced race tires instantly makes the bike twice as fast. The reality is that it doesn’t matter what tires are worn as it’s the engine and gears that make the bike such a major machine. Even the best tires can never help a bike with a lame engine, so racing tires just make a ride look worse.
Some urban myths for squids aren’t just silly, they can also be downright dangerous. One of the biggest has to be how various websites have come to suggest that if an incident is about to happen, the smartest thing to do is to lay the bike down. It seems to be influenced by all those movies that show a bike easily skidding on a road to slide under a truck with little damage. There’s also how getting closer to the ground minimizes the risk of damage. The reality, of course, is completely different and laying the bike down makes it impossible to control. Thus, the risk of serious injury and smashing the bike to pieces is much higher, making this a legend that has to fade away.
This is one of those legends whose origins have long been lost. At first, it was just accepted by a few people but has spread majorly among newbie bikers. It’s that the helmet is considered a major source of luck for a biker. Thus, if you drop it just once, reusing it will bring bad luck. There’s even a saying: “As goes your helmet, so goes your head.” Now, it’s true that wearing a cracked helmet is never a good idea. However, just dropping it once with nothing but a scratch hardly merits buying a completely new one. There’s no connection between a helmet drop and a spill soon after yet it remains a legend that bad luck follows such an act.
This is another myth that’s stuck around for a while. It began with car companies and now has spread to bikers. The idea is that for some reason, manufacturers deliberately put out bad motorcycles designed to fail and have issues. The conspiracy theory is that there’s an alliance between biking companies and mechanics, where repair shops give kickbacks for any work fixing these bikes. Like many conspiracy theories, there’s pretty much no evidence to support this but it still maintains as a widely-held belief. Given the number of bad bikes produced, one can understand why bikers would prefer to think this is deliberate rather than just sloppy work. The truth is, manufacturers wouldn’t spend so much on a bad bike for such little paybacks.
Squids tend to believe too much in some of the postings that go around social media. One is the belief that several states have instituted (or are about to) a curfew on biking. It really got around in 2016, when word spread about reports of 11 states implementing regulations from the Department of Transportation that would force motorcycles off the role from 11 pm to 6 am. Obviously, attempting to enforce such a curfew would be almost impossible for state and local law enforcement. And yet, it got around for a bit before it was proven false. It still pops up now and then, with squids fearing that biking at night will be against the rules quite soon—despite no actual push for such a curfew to exist.
It’s incredible that, in 2019, there is still a belief police radar scanners cannot pick up speeding motorcycles. The “logic” (if you can use that word) is that because motorcycles are so much smaller and thinner and are surrounded by cars, scanners can’t cut through all that background noise to detect them. Squids think this means that a biker can go as fast as they want and the cops can’t catch them. This is obviously false, as police scanners pick up any vehicle regardless of the size. Yet, somehow, squids buy the legend that a bike can be made “invisible” and that this gives them carte blanche, even on an empty road. The scores of tickets handed out for speeding proves otherwise.
This is a myth that pops up every now and then and often spread via social media. Somehow, every few years, the story comes up that the government is going to outlaw motorcycles. It can be based on environmental issues or just something about behavior; either way, the story gets around some politician has declared they want to ban motorcycles and will do so quickly. The story will often have “quotes” from a politician, despite the fact that no such statements ever took place. There’s no way state or federal legislators would possibly okay this. Yet, somehow, the idea that motorcycles are about to be banned still is believed by squids.
Sources: Cruiser, HuffPost, and Autoevolution.