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Sturgis vs Comic-Con! Bikers vs. Geeks!

August 10, 2010

Sturgis Bound Tourist!

The Sturgis Motorcycle Rally is happening now.  We drove right through the center of it.  As a result, since Pennsylvania we have been on the road with tens of thousands of bikers.  At first it was great!  Apryl and I thought it was the most hysterical thing.  Here we are in our eco-friendly car amongst choppers, crotch rockets, three wheelers, sidecars,  etc.

On route 80 in Pennsylvania and Ohio there were sporadic bikers. In Iowa there were probably twice as many as in Illinois or Indiana.  Once we hit South Dakota, it was like someone spilled water on a biker Gremlin, because they totally freaking multiplied.

Each morning at each hotel  I’ve felt completely at ease being the one ‘non-biker’ at the complimentary continental breakfast ( I bring Apryl coffee).   Why is this?  I had no idea until yesterday.  I had an Epiphany. The Sturgis Motorcycle Rally and Comic-Con (California or NYC)  share many similarities!  Bikers and geeks are very similar animals.  I’m sure biker and geek alike would disagree, but hear me out.

1. Attendees of both view  themselves as outsiders.  They are more comfortable with the enjoyment of what they love, rather than attempting to conform to boring social norms.  A biker enjoys the camaraderie of the club or gang he or she affiliates him or herself with.  A geek enjoys the camaraderie found when he or she finds the right comic book store, or online guild, or circle of friends.

2. Both gatherings encourage playing dress-up!  the more unique the better as long as you express your love of the rally/ con and your individuality within the group.  For the rally, it can be expressed through  tattoos or custom bikes.  At the con, it would be cosplay which is dressing like a comic or sci-fi character to attend the show.

3. You have the “bump into” aspect of it all.  At both events, if you are a regular, you develop friends that you only see at that event.  Year after year you see that person and give them a high-five, buy them a beer, catch up.  You might even feign making plans.  There is always the “What’s your number again?  We should totally get a beer sometime.” conversation.  At Sturgis you do—  well, exactly the same thing.

4. The competitive nerd knowledge.   At both events you are seeing the MOST obsessed fans.  At both I’ve heard very similar arguments.  In a Diner in the Town of Midland, I overheard a biker’s tirade about how kids today know nothing about how to fix, build, or even drive a real American Car.  The same discussion can just as easily be overheard at Comic-Con.  You just need to replace the subject with Star Trek, and listen to them go on about how kids today don’t know what good sci-fi is.

5. The girls.  How do you get a huge number of introverted men together in a central location to celebrate anything?  Girls.  Through Rapid City, Deadwood, Sturgis, etc,  There were free bikini bike wash stations.  Of course they were set up at “Official Sturgis Merchandise Tents!”     Comic-Con uses a similar tool.  They use Booth Babes to push products.

She could have been at either event, and probably was.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. August 10, 2010 2:39 pm

    I’ll buy it. Glad you enjoyed your drive through Sturgis. We may have even crossed paths. We’ll have to get together sometime…

    • August 10, 2010 3:00 pm

      Thanks Abby! It was a lot of fun. Cool crowd in every city. We probably did cross paths. We were literally in every Sturgis Rally town for at least a night.

      Thanks for the read!

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