“Yo mama’s a squid!” and other Motorcycle Slang!
August 10, 2009 at 7:40 pm #3275BenParticipant
Ok guys, in prep for the article I am going to write on motorcycle slang I thought I would ask you guys what words you use, and what words you have no idea what they mean. Post them up with the definitions if you can. Here is a few examples:
Cage – Slang for an automobile because after riding a motorcycle for a long time, getting in a car makes you feel like you are in a cage. Also named because you are surrounded by a ‘cage’ of metal.
Squid – Possibly a combination of the words Squirrelly Kid. Generally used to refer to an unsafe rider who wears little to no protective gear and rides in an overly aggressive manner.
Fairings – The plastic bits on sportbikes that help redirect some of the wind and make everything much more aerodynamic.
So lets here what you guys got!
BenAugust 10, 2009 at 8:31 pm #21463
Squid: SQuashed KID. What eventually happens when crazy antics catch up with them, such as, but not limited to, going double the speed limit on the highway, racing on public streets, or taking the twisties at warp speed. I4’s are the engine of choice. Generally, ego, overconfidence and most importantly, speed, prevail over actual riding skill, and worst of all, the lack of desire to actually acquire such skills. Helmet graphics are more important than helmet quality or price, assuming a helmet is worn at all. Sneakers, jeans and a T-shirt flapping in the wind on highway riding are also another signs of a potential squid. Accompanied by feelings of immortality and invincibility while on two wheels, and despite many drops, still feeling content with their riding ability.August 10, 2009 at 8:46 pm #21464
Drop: What gravity does to a bike, if it’s not on a stand or controlled by a rider.
Drops can vary from forgetting to put the kick-stand down when dismounting, leading to scuffed up fairings and pain to ego, to low-speed parking lot training drops, which lead to scuffed up fairings and broken turn signals and mild pain to the body.
Worst of all are high speed drops which lead to very noticeably broken fairings and large damage to the bike and large pain to the rider. Other riders and a potential buyer will surely notice and be concerned about evidence of the later more than the former on a beginner bike.August 10, 2009 at 9:47 pm #21467
For squid, I’ve also heard:
Stupidly quick, underdressed, imminently dead
Frame sliders: designed to prevent damage to the frame in the case of a high speed drop, but often desired to prevent damage to fairings in low speed or stationary drops.
Brain bucket: could be used to refer to any helmet, but I’ve mostly heard it in referring to half helmets that don’t give protection and are just used to get around helmet laws.August 10, 2009 at 10:13 pm #21469
A few more. I’m not sure if they’re all really slang. Some are just terms.
ATGATT: all the gear all the time. The idea that a person should wear a full set of safety gear every time they ride, regardless of what they feel the chances are of getting into a wreck.
Lane splitting: riding on the dashed white line between two lanes of cars. Usually done during heavy traffic to get somewhere quicker. Currently only legal in California, but it has been my experience that it’s acceptable in very heavy traffic in cities (not legal, but perhaps acceptable).
Sweeper: the last rider in a group ride. Usually the most experienced.
Gixxer: the Suzuki GSX-R motorcycle.
Sporty: the Harley Davidson Sportster motorcycle.
Sissy bar: a backrest for the passenger. As far as I know, it’s never found on sport bikes.
Pillion: a passenger seat on a motorcycle, or the passenger him/herself.August 10, 2009 at 10:41 pm #21473eonParticipant
Bitch: Pillion passenger on a cruiser
Pirate: Stereotypical cruiser rider.
Power Ranger: Stereotypical sport bike rider
: Stereotypical maxi-scoot rider
Poker Run / Oyster Run: I’m actually am not sure what these mean exactly
Farkle: Accessorize your bikeAugust 10, 2009 at 10:48 pm #21472JackTradeParticipant
Add “Naked”…no fairings. Less aerodynamic, but more visceral. See Monster, Ducati for more info. Note the “Fairings” and “Naked” are usually only discussed in terms of sportbikes…Harleys are not considered naked bikes for instance.
For “Squid”, I always make it more encompassing when I define it…to me, it’s not just hotheads on sportbikes but also guys on Harleys in (inevitably HD) t-shirts, half-helmets and fingerless gloves.
And ’cause I love ’em: “Cafe Racer”…a minimalist, stripped down style of proto-sportbike popular in Europe in the 1950s/60s, currently making a comeback. So named because British bikers would race them from roadside cafe to cafe. (see “Naked”).
On the more humorous side:
“Crotch rocket” – to cruiser riders and the general population, any sportbike, often of Japanese origin.
“Metric bike” – what Harley riders call cruisers made by foreign companies.
“Oldwing” – what sportbike riders call touring bikes. Comes from preeminence of the Honda Goldwing in this segment.August 10, 2009 at 10:51 pm #21474MunchParticipant
Poker Run varies on the club and type of ride. Some set up rides with certain stops where as the participants see a specific person to acquire a card. At the end of the run everyone compares their “hands” to see who won. Sometimes a monetary pot can be won or the big door prize. Mostly a cruiser club thing. Usually requires an entrance per rider fee. Alot of fund raisers are funded with this method.
RC– Riding club, no membership rules other then basic human decency and definitely no social ladder to climb
MC– motorcycle club…everything (for most) that an RC is not. Has a pecking order, requires participation for 80+% of club activities, Full on patches on the jackets and some are considered territorial.
With sweeper be careful to determine in what context… sweeper also describes a long “sweeping” turn, also as said before rear rider of a group, also know as tail captain, chaser and various others.August 11, 2009 at 2:04 am #21480jmango95Participant
riders who are unsafe and who dont wear protective gear while riding. the term squid can be attributed to the sound that is made when one of this people hits the ground, the sound of which is reminiscent of a squid smacking pavement…and they shall be squishyAugust 11, 2009 at 2:16 am #21481eternal05Participant
UPDATE: Images don’t seem to be working, so they’re also linked
Streetfighter: A race-tuned sportbike that has been stripped of fairings and other bodywork, detuned for more torque (potentially at the cost of horsepower), and given a more upright riding position. Examples: Triumph Speed Triple (below) and Street Triple, Ducati Streetfighter, Suzuki Bandit, Honda CB1000R (NOT to be confused with CBR1000, the liter sportbike), etc.
Chopper: Not to be confused with “cruiser,” a chopper is typically a cruiser that, somewhat analogously to the sportbike->streetfighter transformation, is stripped of unnecessary parts and bodywork, and, most importantly, had its frame modified (usually “chopped”) to lower the seat and dramatically increase rake and trail. Historically, choppers are custom-built one-off bikes, though their rise in popularity has given way to some chopper-focused manufacturers. Example below (Big Dog “Wolf”):
Fender eliminator: Many sportbikes ship with gnarly plastic fenders. Fender eliminator kits range from a screwdriver to a replacement bit of bodywork meant to create an attractive and fenderless rear end. Example below (Suzuki GSX-R600):
Hanging off: The practice used by racers on the track of moving their bodyweight towards the inside of a corner, hanging closer to the ground than the bike carrying them. Example (John Hopkins, Rizla Suzuki team):August 11, 2009 at 3:17 am #21484owlieParticipant
Slab – Highway
Superslab – divided highway with 4 or more lanes
Squid – Generally I think of this as someone who engages in unsafe riding behaviors, though I do not think that not going ATGATT is necessarily indicative of squidishness. Also, I think that this may have an origin in military slang- can someone confirm?
Lid – half helmet
Shortie – half helmet
BRC – Basic Rider Course
MSF – Motorcycle safety foundation
Geezerglide – ? I think that Elwood said this was an HD Ultraglide?August 11, 2009 at 3:43 am #21490
Hanging off: aka putting a knee downAugust 11, 2009 at 4:09 am #21494eternal05Participant
Any helmet is a “lid.”August 11, 2009 at 7:39 am #21466
Scraping Pegs: What happens when you are taking a turn too fast, due to heavy lean. Slow down next time before the curve!August 11, 2009 at 7:40 am #21497
Frame sliders are known to cause more harm than good in most situations.
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