Straight out of the great *cough* state of Indiana comes the the SNBW(Stupid Newbie Biker Wannabe) question of the week:

(Skippy*:) HI Zen! Tell me about your bike! I bought my first motorcycle ever – Yamaha VTX-1300R – last fall. Looking forward to warmer weather so I can take it out more often!

(Zen:)This one is a 100th Anniversary Harley Road King Classic(FLHRCI). I added custom Carlini drag bars, a 95″ big-bore kit, a Küryakyn Hypercharger Pro and I fabricated a suicide shift for it.

(Skippy:) What is a “suicide shift” (I’m not sure I want to know)?

(Zen:) You shift with your left hand, rather than with your foot. In my photo, you can see the chrome skull shift knob right under my hand. That lever is the suicide shift.

(Skippy:) I’m brand new to motorcycling. What’s the advantage of the suicide shift? Are there other mods I should consider?

(Zen:) You shouldn’t consider a suicide shift. You’ll kill yourself. That’s why they call it a suicide shift. On the list of most dangerous motorcycle modifications, adding a suicide shift comes a close 2nd to removing the front wheel.

(Skippy:) Oh. I don’t think I’d want that, then.

(Zen:) Probably not.

Another motorcycling disaster narrowly averted. Luckily, Skippy’s stupid question kept his mid-life crisis from becoming his end-of-life crisis.

Happy riding! (Indiana residents, please drive with extra caution next summer)