Drive any rural road and you’ll eventually encounter a long line of Harley Davidson riders. Leather-clad and helmetless, they look like badasses to any suburban, minivan-driving weenies. That is, until my latest epiphany: The formation of a group of equally badassed Leather-Clad Minivan Riders.
What motivated me to direct my brilliant epiphanal powers in this direction? Perhaps it was the encounter at the urinal that did it.
My family and I had stopped at a gas station for a potty break. I strode up to the urinal, and moments later, a Harley rider stepped up next to me.
Six foot four and three hundred plus pounds, he took up two urinals. It was 94 degrees that day, and the monstrosity’s leather armature was steaming with heat. I felt like a choirboy in the presence of such a tough guy, and I couldn’t help but gawk.
Sensing my stare, he intoned, with a voice several octaves deeper than Darth Vader, “What the f— do you want?”
I didn’t know. I was just in awe of how much of a badass he was, and how much of a Dockers-clad weenie I wasn’t. In a trembling voice, I blurted out the only thought that came to mind.
“Have you (gulp) ever killed anyone?”
“Not yet,” he growled. Then he left, boots clonking, eschewing a hand-wash. The man didn’t even fear germs.
Let’s Get Good at Being Bad
The encounter prompted me to reassess my manhood. As a suburban dad, I live on a cul de sac, drive a minivan, and dress corporate casual. How could I compare with the bathroom badass?
I also had a wife and two kids (at this time they were ages 1 and 3.) I couldn’t just trade in the minivan for a Hog and hit the road alone.
Then my epiphany hit. What if we adapted the Harley lifestyle to the modern-day family? What if we became leather-clad minivan riders?
I proposed the idea to my wife, expecting an immediate veto. But as a stay-at-home mom mired in a life spent changing diapers and watching Lil’ Bear, her eyes lit up at the idea.
In no time, she’d swapped out the mom jeans for leather pants and bustier. Then it was onto the kids. Surfing the net, we found a leather vest embroidered with Barney the Bad Ass Dinosaur and a pair of nerf-spiked bracelets.
One last piece remained. We needed a gang, otherwise we’d look like freaks, and not a threatening counterculture. I called my neighbors, who, after initially cowering at our badass appearance, joined in.
Our horde of leather-clad minivan riders hit the road, and soon discovered surprising new benefits:
· We secured a hefty group discount at a waterpark as long as I promised not to don my leather thong.
· We took advantage of the drafting effect of our minivans, and boosted our mileage to a robust 16.7 miles per gallon.
· We drastically reduced our contributions to the landfill thanks to the use of leather diapers.
If you care to become a true-bad ass yourself, I encourage you to join the ranks of the Leather-Clad Minivan Riders. Buckle your kids into the car seat and strap on those leather chaps. You’re gonna go for a helluva ride.
Photo by mikepetrucci