A female correspondent chides me for not denouncing an Indonesian town which has banned women from riding motorcycles.
“What’s the matter with you, Bananas?” she wrote in her missive. “I thought you were a champion of women’s rights – this happened back in January!”
“My dear lady,” I replied, “I am for the rights of all primates, be they male or female, hairy or hairless, human or inhuman. You can’t expect me to thump my chest whenever women are excluded from an ostentatious mode of transport. Why can’t they take the bus?”
On reading the relevant news report, I discovered that my feminist critic had been exaggerating. The women of that town (with the aptly improbable name of Lhokseumawe) can still travel on motorbikes and scooters, as long as they ride side-saddle rather than straddling them.
"It is to maintain women's dignity and good image," said a town spokesman.
Reading between the lines, it appears that the town elders are worried that a motorcycle engine is some kind of giant vibrator that might induce illicit tremors in a woman’s loins and cause her to hyperventilate in public. Could this be true? I’ve never seen it myself, but maybe lady bikers are good at keeping a lid on their rapture.
Of course, if riding a motorcycle does arouse the lady-parts it ought to be banned in the name of road safety. You can't expect a woman who's writhing in ecstasy to keep her eyes on the road and her hands on the handlebars. It’s only a matter of time before someone’s boot gets rammed.
To get an informed opinion, I consulted my friend Bobbi Hatch, who has ridden a ’65 Panhead for many years. She assured me that neither she nor her sisters in the San Francisco ‘Dykes on Bikes’ society had ever climaxed on her crotch rocket:
“Our bikes are our buddies not our whores,” she explained. “Any woman who got herself off in that way would be suffering from the female equivalent of premature ejaculation.”
I consider her statement to be authoritative. The women in the Indonesian town are clearly the victims of an ignorant and despotic patriarchy. May they prevail in their struggle against oppression.
Having done my duty by condemning this iniquity, I don’t intend to give it further publicity. In truth, I don’t like motorbikes, which are noisy, vulgar machines favoured by the brash elements of human society. I’ve always thought the most civilised method of conveyance for a lady is the sedan chair. She has her own private compartment where she can polish her nails, powder her nose, and be perfectly adorned for her appointment.
Would it be possible to find porters in this day and age? I believe so. The human gaols are full of burly brutes who would jump of the chance of fresh air and exercise in a haulier chain gang. Just picture the spectacle of a page boy shouting “Make way for Lady Gaga’s litter!” as the diva was whisked off to her weekly therapy session. Pure pageantry, I tell you!
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