Friday, April 3, 2015

Tempted by a Suzuki (No actual motorcycle or pictures in this post)

Self, if you want to avoid temptation, avoid temptation. I have to remind myself often.

Is there a shop where you just like to browse, one you stop by when you have nothing better to do?

I stay out of motorcycle shops these days. But I hauled a friend's scooter to a local motorcycle shop last week so that he could have new tires installed. His back tire had reached a point where you could see the air inside. While we were there, I looked around a lot. It was strange to be back in that familiar foreign place.

To preface all of this, I need to tell you that I used to go to motorcycle stores a lot. Once a week was not rare. Whether I was buying parts or just browsing to see what had come in, it was a regular stop. I have been a consumer all my life. Bookstores. Bicycle shops. Hardware stores. Pet shops. The Thrifty Nickel. Craigslist. Ebay. Amazon. Swap meets. Antique stores. Garage sales. Ralph's Records. I am not a heavy spender, but I am a heavy browser. Twenty dollars here, ten dollars there...

At the motorcycle shop I found a Suzuki TU250X. $4300. And I wanted it. Which is funny. I have sworn off buying new, gas-powered vehicles. And I strongly resist the urge to buy used, gas-powered vehicles. But this motorcycle crept up on me. At first, I just thought to myself, That's a cool little bike. Then I went to the website and checked out the stats. I read the on-line reviews. I looked around for a used one. And I have had motorcycles on the brain since.

I have been working at giving stuff up. You can blame it on my bank account, Annie Leonard, and a coffee swiller named Joe. You can blame it on a lack of space and the idea that stuff seems to own me these days. Maybe it's all those tiny house videos.

So I'm dreaming about this stupid motorcycle, and the voice pops up. You know where you went wrong. You went in. And the voice was right. I went into the land of temptation and was tempted. It is something I have struggled with over the last few years. If you don't want more stuff, stop looking at more stuff.

But it's not enough (yet) to stop looking at stuff. For a while I felt a bit lost. I felt a need to fill that void. I have been working on that. Instead of spending money, I try to go for a bike ride, walk the dogs, work around the house, read, write, build. I try to do something. Plant a garden.

May we both stop browsing and build something better - a life!

Arlo Guthrie - The Motorcycle Song

Squeeze - Tempted