A term that is popularly thrown around in motorcycle communities with increasing frequency nowadays is that of being a “Motorcycle squid”. However, many people misunderstand the meaning of the word and often use it in a wrong context. Thus, it is important to know the correct usage of the term. So, what exactly does it mean?
Motorcycle Squid: What it means and how NOT to be one
Who is a motorcycle squid?
A motorcycle squid is a slang term, so having a definite meaning for it is not easy. However, there are a few traits by which you can easily identify a motorcycle squid when you see one.
In simplest term, the phrase is used to define someone who is riding a motorcycle with lack of common sense. The urban dictionary defines a motorcycle squid as someone who over-estimates his abilities while riding a bike, and is over-confident of his abilities despite lacking any relevant skills.
Motorcycle squids not only pose danger to themselves but to other people they share the road with as well. They are irresponsible rides, with no regard for law and general traffic rules, and have no concern at all about the safety of themselves and that of others. They give a bad name to all riders. They fail to realize that their bike-riding styles may have negative consequences on other people.
Where did the term originate from?
The origins of the term “squid” to describe a particular type of motorcyclist are not clear, but there are varieties of deductions about its place of origin. Squid could have generally come from irresponsible motorcyclists who lay splayed on the footpath with blood oozing out, making them look like these tentacle creatures.
It was generally a term used by surfers for new suffers who sometimes had no control over their surfing. It is believed to have originated as a mash-up of two words, like squirrelly/squished and kid. The relevance of the term led to it being used in the motorcycle communities.
The term “squid” is often described as an acronym for various phrases, a few of them being;
“Speeding Quickly Until I Die”
“Stupidly Quick, Underdressed, Ignorant and Dangerous”
General Characteristics of a Moto Squid
Although the following are not always defining traits of a motorcycle squid, these are the behaviors most commonly noticed among those who qualify as being a squid on a motorcycle.
However, one must remember that it isn’t just one factor alone that is enough to label someone as a squid. For example, many squids are young motorcyclists, but it doesn’t mean that any young person who rides a motorcycle is a squid.
- Motorcycle choice:
Most squids are seen to have the Suzuki GSXR or the Yamaha R1 and R6. These motorcycles are generally bought because they “look” fast, smart and powerful. Even though a squid merely uses his motorcycle to visit the grocery store or his friend’s house fifteen minutes away, he will use these particular brands just to show off. Some squids use race tires for their motorcycles in spite of just having to ride around in their locality.
This is more of a defining trait. Squid riders generally tend to be rash and irresponsible while driving. They attempt stunts and wheelies in crowded traffic areas or on other roads despite having no expertise in the area. They will often attempt to overtake other riders, not even stopping at blind turns. On straight roads, they tend to accelerate to speeds that are over the permissible limits. Many squids often have no control over how they ride, eventually crash and then have their Squid Card forever.
Squids generally shrug off protective gears and are often seen riding at insane speeds without helmets. This doesn’t mean that only fast riders without helmets are squids. Many moto squids tend to leave out helmets if they feel hot. They have a belief that they are invincible and that accidents only happen to others. They are also seen riding just in shorts and t-shirts, giving the excuse that it is a “hot” summer’s day and therefore no protective gear is required.
Sometimes, they wear things that exist just to make them look “cooler” than the next rider. Wearing sunglasses that match the color of the bike is one such instance.
How to prevent from becoming a squid?
Here is a look at how one can prevent from becoming a Motorcycle squid.
- Be well trained:
Take a training course to learn the ins and outs of motorcycling. 92% of motorcycle accidents occur by people who are taught by family and friends and do not take a formal training course. Take the training course on the bike that you are going to ride, and not on a friend’s. Know all the driving rules, remember them and follow them well.
- Wear protective gear:
No matter how short your trips or how confident you are as a rider, wearing protective gear always helps. Even though your rising skills are perfect, there may be unforeseen circumstance where you might lose control of your motorcycle and fall. Protective gears protect you from the maximum part of the injury.
- Be responsible:
Keep not only your safety in mind, but that of others as well. Accidents take lives, causes damage which takes thousands of dollars to repair. A moment of being careful can save a lot. Don’t over-speed, don’t overtake especially at turns.
Now that you know what a squid is, try your best not to be one.
Here are just a few examples of Squids on Motorcycles: