By Chris Genovese
1. Stroads suck, and are to be avoided. Think about the busiest parts of Niagara Falls Boulevard and Transit Road, and you’ll have a pretty clear understanding of what a “stroad” is. (Half street, half road, I guess.) You can go 45 mph or more on a stroad, with multiple lanes of traffic and traffic lights, plus scores of businesses on each side, causing congestion, distraction, and danger. The News recently published a story citing the data and danger to pedestrians and bikers (bikes and motorbikes) on the Boulevard. The problem is, stroads were designed years ago to move as many station wagons and trucks from the city to the suburbs as possible, with no regard for pedestrians or those travelling on 2 or 3 wheels.
2. If you like to adjusts your “sails” based on which way the wind is blowing, check out what’s being offered in the way of electric motorcycles these days. I know many of us were pretty upset to learn that new ICE bikes will NOT be sold in New York past 2034, and I understand that sentiment. Nobody loves their fossil fuel burning rides more than I do! However, many auto and motorcycle manufacturers (Kawasaki is the latest) have already announced their plans and committed resources to converting fully to EVs, and even Harley’s CEO has said, “Electrification is a given.”
So, if you get a chance to ride a (full size) electric motorcycle, do it! I think you’ll find that they’re high quality machines that are super fun and fast, and yes, eerily quiet. For me it’s been an eye opener, and I look forward to someday owning one. I’ll never stop riding my Springer; even when gas reaches $20 per gallon. And we’re planning to ride the heck out of our current bagger while they develop the battery tech and the infrastructure to support an electric tourer. In the meantime, hopefully they’ll also figure out a better way to use technology to make cagers notice us on the roads!
3. The WNY biker community is more diverse and younger than I may have previously noticed. My gig at Kantor Law compels me to reach out to bikers of all shapes and sizes, and it’s great to see the way younger riders and other groups do things a little differently. Young builders are creating bikes I’d never even try to ride, but it’s easy to admire their talent and creativity. Female rider groups and others continue to grow and expand, and it’s great the way they support and foster new riders and discuss safety. Of course, there’s many groups and clubs that ride the same type of bike, work the same job, share veteran status, or interests. (Special props to BACA, which in my opinion is one of the best groups out there that exists to help abused kids.) There’s also tons of riders out there that are not affiliated at all, and love just doing their own thing. The great thing is, the biker wave reminds us that; no matter what we ride or what group we ride with, or alone, we’re united with mutual respect for those that accept the risk and love the ride.
4. It’s great to work with (and for) people that you respect and admire. It’s also really great to be tasked with supporting the biker community as the main thrust of my work at Kantor Law. Furthermore, I’m not quitting any time soon, and we’re not accepting applications for my position!