I have found my alter ego. And oh my goodness, she’s beautiful.
She looks fast just sitting still, doesn’t she? This is the Ducati 848 Superbike, and if I believed in reincarnation, this is what I would want to be when I came back.
I have never given motorcycles much thought. They held no draw for me. Just another mode of transportation. But this! This is more than a machine. This is art with attitude. This says screaming down empty winding moonlit roads that really only exist in car commercials. This says a ride so smooth you’ll cry and so fast your heart will explode in your chest and you will not only not care, but actually enjoy it when it happens.
I didn’t know what a Ducati was until recently. I’d read the name in a book a couple of years ago, and I was like, “A what?” (Normally I Google anything I’m not familiar with, but at the time I ran across it, it was really late and I was already in bed and the computer was off. Besides, I figured out from the context that it was a motorcycle, so I just pictured your run-of-the-mill bike and went on). Then, a couple of months ago I saw it mentioned again in another book. Not even an important mention. Just something like, “…parked next to the Ducati…” and I was like, “There it is again! What is it about this bike?” So I googled the Ducati website, and when this pulled up, I actually, literally said “Holy Smokes!” out loud. It was everything I ever secretly wanted to be but am not, in machine form.
Of course, as soon as I acknowledged the teensiest kernel of desire, my practical, responsible, sensible (boring) self screamed ABSOLUTELY NOT! It watches the news too much. I could tell it had visions of me splattered all over the road because some SUV didn’t see me. (Not see me? If you saw this bike coming down the road, you wouldn’t be able to look away). But I understand the point. There are gobs and gobs of statistics about people killed in motorcycle accidents. And even if they weren’t, this fine fine Italian is probably molto costoso. My boring sensible self knows all of this. My boring sensible self points out all kinds of other practical, logical arguments like, even if I had the money, and even if it was perfectly safe, where would the groceries go? Where would your purse go? And what about when there’s inclement weather? Sigh. My practical, responsible side always wins.
But somewhere, deep down in my dream world where I’ve won obscene amounts of money in the lottery, and Tony looks like Antonio Banderas, and my legs never need shaving and I can gorge myself on chocolate without gaining an ounce, my alter ego bike throws off the yoke of practical responsibility and dares it, no, taunts it to follow me as we go roaring out onto the open roads, all whipping wind and freedom and laughing uproariously at the stunned look on practical responsibility’s face as we gunned the engine and whooping, rocketed off into the sunset.
Holy Smokes is right.