A recent experience helped me come up with a list of the top 10 things Daytona Bike Week doesn’t need.
I used to think of Bike Week as the Happiest Time of the Year. After my trip over to Daytona today, it seems more like the Biggest Disappointment of the Year. The people who are going there are doing their best to totally ruin Bike Week.
What Are the Top 10 Things Daytona Bike Week Doesn’t Need?
In an effort to save Bike Week from itself, I’ve decided that it’s time someone pointed out its deficiencies in order to illustrate the problems we need to avoid at further events. Apparently, that someone turned out to be me. What can I say? I’m here to help.
I spent a lot of time in unnecessary traffic jams today. Seriously, I didn’t even get to any of the places that I truly wanted to visit – Main Street, Destination Daytona, Iron Horse – because of the incredible traffic jams.
I’m not a neophyte. I’ve lived in Central Florida all my life. Rather than poking along I-4 or International Speedway, I know that there are relatively unfettered roads that lead up to the same destinations. At least, until you get to the road that leads right to the destination. That’s when you’re truly screwed.
It doesn’t have to be that way, though. The problem, very clearly, was the traffic control failure of Daytona Police and Volusia County Sheriff Deputies. These folks were the cause of a true cluster-fuck. I watched cops who were directing people against the traffic lights.
I watched cops at intersections treating all directions equally, despite the obvious fact that there was much more of a backup in a given direction.
Those of us who wasted hours idling in traffic would have been better served if the cops had just stayed home with the Blue Flu. They did more harm than good, at least as far as traffic control was concerned.
Let’s hope that improves in the future.
2: Stuffed Toys
Guys, it’s time to leave your stuffed animals at home. I don’t care if it’s a teddy bear, a Chuckie puppet, or one of the Muppets.
Grow up. Women are not going to sleep with you just because you brought some stuffed toy with you. It’s played out. Give it up. Leave that thing at home. It’s sad enough that you even own a plushie.
3: Tip Jars
This one is for the ladies. Yes, we know you make a lot of money each day just by standing there passing out over-priced beer and bottles of water. One woman told me she made about $3,000 a day as a beer tub girl.
The problem with the tip jar is sometimes you don’t see if we tipped you. Then you give your customer an angry glance and…well, it’s a bit disconcerting.
It sucks when you drop some money in a jar and the girl doesn’t see it. If we’re going to tip you, we want a little smile or gratitude for it.
Don’t get me wrong, there are friendly women working on beer tubs. They’ve learned from experience that it’s good for business. My advice to new servers is that you’re serving people who are on vacation and want to enjoy themselves.
A smile goes a long way toward earning a nice tip.
4: Dead Animals
This tragic display seems to be limited to old, white men. You see them with horns, fur, and even dead animal faces somehow adorning their bodies. Perhaps they think it makes them seem more manly as if they just returned from killing the critter with their bare hands while simultaneously sexually gratifying a goat.
Enough, already. This does not make you look cool, manly, or anything positive. It makes you that freak with the fur and horns. It makes us feel sorry for your wife and grandkids. This is a variation of the stuffed-toy phenomenon.
Likewise, it’s played out. Give up the dead animals. We’ll all be grateful.
5: Spring Breakers Mixing With Bikers
I like cute young girls as much as anyone else.
The last thing I want to see mixing around a bunch of fat old bikers is a collection of hot young women who want to play biker-chic for a day. While they may think it’s fun, I just find it frustrating.
Stay on the beach, kids. It’s a sad coincidence that Spring Break starts at the tail end of Bike Week. Keep your place. You can have all the fun you want, but don’t do it in front of the bikers because some mixed signals combined with alcohol could lead to a bad result.
I don’t like snakes. I don’t like people who have snakes with them. What up with people who walk around with their own personal snake?
Is it supposed to make you look bad? Is it supposed to be erotic? It’s not. It’s a snake and I hate those damn things. It’s probably not fun for the snake, either.
It’s Bike Week, not Snake Week.
7: Chicks with Too Much Pink
Pink bikes. Pink boots. Pink helmets. Pink leathers. Enough, already. We get it. You’re a woman and have your Girl Power on display.
At any rate, it’s another thing that’s played out. Yay, girl-power! You’re surrounded 90:1 by fat men in leather. Trust me, you already stand out in a crowd just for not having a Y-chromosome. You don’t need to flaunt your pink accessories.
8: Fake Tits
Enough with the fake tits. I’m not talking about breast augmentation. To me, those aren’t fake. I believe in the words of Sam Kinison.
What I’m talking about are t-shirts and other images of tits that aren’t really tits. Men do not get excited by t-shirts showing us stuff that you don’t have. If you want to show us your cleavage, that’s a great start.
If you want to wear a short t-shirt where the boobs hang out underneath, this is also an acceptable solution. There’s even a protest every year during Bike Week where women take off their tops for equal rights to go Top Free.
I’d enjoy this protest more if there were more attractive women in it, but I support their cause. Set those puppies free!
9: Cell Phones
Who are these people talking to all the time? It’s bad enough you can’t find a woman who can drive without a cell phone conversation but do we need bikers yapping on the phone all the time?
You’re here, you’re on vacation. Shut up and pay attention. Don’t worry about the crisis in HR back home. Let the wife figure out how to work the garbage disposal on her own.
Pay attention to what’s happening around you and stop YELLING into your damn phone at every concert, beer hall, and restaurant.
Vendors are everywhere during Bike Week. People started this event for racing and to have fun. Whenever people get together, someone comes along to sell them something.
To an extent, that’s not a bad thing. You get a chance to see things for sale that may interest you, parts for the bike, t-shirts, etc. However, it’s gone far beyond acceptable commercialization now.
Hard Rock has a place on Main Street only during Biker events now. Ford is here trying to hawk its trucks to bikers who clearly should be towing their motorcycles instead of riding them.
Verizon Wireless was here with a special offer today. That’s right. Verizon Wireless! What does that have to do with bikers, racing, or drinking to excess? I understand that nearly everyone has a cell phone now, but do we need them to market to us during Bike Week?
Hell, there’s also a sale on mattresses in Daytona Beach this week. How are you supposed to carry a mattress back home to Buffalo on your bike? I guess you need to buy a Ford truck.
Enough, already. At least keep the commercialization relevant to the event.
That’s it. That’s my rant on the top 10 things Daytona Bike Week doesn’t need. There’s probably more, like all the people in trucks, cars, and minivans trying to cruise down Main Street during Bike Week, but at least they have a right to drive on the road. For now.