I have established a vehicular benchmark of sorts, having recently bought a motorcycle. Since I am 65 and the bike is an eleven-year old cruiser, I figure we can age in place. Make stately trips to the coffee shop for Seniors Discount Day, or to the pharmacy for–what was it? Oh yes, memory pills. But more about the milestone. Along with the motorcycle, I own, in no particular order, an old car, an old fishing boat and motor, an ancient rototiller, a gas mower and a chainsaw. Many other machines remain unbought, but I figure that with the motorcycle purchase, I am at entry-level status in the club of Male Motor Addictions.

Each one of these vehicles requires careful thought, time, and accessories. They must be diligently researched before purchase. Much information and opinion will be gatherd from friends, colleagues and Grandpa Google. Once purchased, these vehicles must be tightened, WD-40′d, cleaned, sharpened, tuned and accessorized. Not to mention the actual use. This all represents a vast commitment of money, time and attention.

Where would all this collective concentration be diverted to if vehicles were at the margins of our male psyche instead of at its very pulsing, throbbing center? It is a sobering thought. We could learn ballet. End poverty. Fix that back door hinge. Read stories to our kids.

But maybe motor obsession is part of our male destiny, and we can’t fight genetics. I don’t know. I’ll think about that one while I’m riding my motorcycle.