Last weekend on my motorcycle journey in WY and MT, I waved at everyone on a motorcycle and watched to see who'd wave back. I saw almost nothing but Harley riders, hundreds of them solo and in groups. Overwhelmingly, they DID wave back.
And I wasn't on a Harley. I wasn't on a Japanese bike, but at 140mph closing speed they probably thought I was. They waved anyway. Had they been able to identify my bike, (it's British) they would not have felt the same kind of scorn they exhibit toward Japanese bikes. At some H-D rallies, someone trucks in an old Honda. For a dollar, you can hit it with a sledge hammer.
But I don't believe they could identify my bike. Maybe they figured it was Japanese. I wore a helmet. Most of them did not. Still they waved. Ninety percent waved. No kidding. Nine percent of cyclists wave.
Why is that?
I don't think rider egos work the same way on powered two-wheelers. How else can you explain it? Is there some sort of competition among bicyclists, a cooler-than-thou ranking going on?
I wear cycling clothing but not head-to-toe matching team kit. I ride several brands of bicycles and notice no difference in the returned-wave ratio. I wave when the bike path is busy and on streets that don't see a cyclist once an hour. Same result.
If an obese plumbing contractor on a chromed-up Fat Bob who smokes, drives an F250 and hates imported motorcycles waves back at me on my Triumph, why won't a guy about my size, dressed like me, riding a bike just like mine and with a lifestyle almost identical to mine wave back? Huh?