Exploring the Unknown

Exploring the Unknown

Sunday, November 5, 2017

Interview With A Biker - Nicolas Jacques By Adam McAuley

1981 Suzuki GS650 GL
Pic © Nicolas Jacques
What many people see in the media and what they immediately think of when they see a biker is the hard-core biker gang biker, but not all bikers fall into this category. The world of motorcycles is a broad and diverse one that can accommodate nearly every type of person such as speed enthusiasts, thrill seekers and even entire families on one bike. For this interview, I interviewed my boss, Nicolas Jacques. He is the owner and head chef of Chez Moi Chez Toi, a very popular Indian restaurant in Lac Brome. He owns a 1981 Suzuki GS650 GL, a classic styled motorcycle that, for him, has both nostalgic and functional benefits.


Pic © Nicolas Jacques
I felt it was important to determine whether had a reason as to why he had chosen this specific bike, maybe he had done extensive research and determined that this was the exact bike that he needed or maybe someone had influenced his decision. As it turns out it was his first bike and it was more a matter of price and how well it ran with the added benefit of it being aesthetically pleasing to him, which are sensible enough reasons for buying a bike in my opinion. When he bought the bike, everything was in pristine condition with all the original parts still intact, the only modification being the green vinyl wrap on the gas tank. Nick then when on to explain that since the purchase he has only needed to bring it into a shop for some quick tune ups and small miscellaneous things.

Pic © Nicolas Jacques
His decision to become a biker was not one that was influenced by anything in particular either he simply just decided one day, with his friend, that they should start biking. It is this idea of spontaneity that is the main aspect of Nicolas’s biking experience. Though Nick appreciates the community aspect of biking he prefers to just “hop on and ride.” He explained that he doesn’t ride with friends maybe one or two on occasion, he mainly enjoys just riding alone and going where he likes to go when he wants to go. He finds himself making up excuses whenever possible to ride his bike, for example he’ll hop on his bike and ride for hours just to grab a coffee at a new restaurant a couple towns over. For him riding in a gang defeats the purpose and freedom of riding. The idea of spending time scheduling and meeting with friends and riding together in a gang takes away from Nick’s spontaneous riding nature. 

Pic © Nicolas Jacques
You wouldn’t know Nick was a biker just from looking at him, when he isn’t on his bike or in his gear he doesn’t seem like what one would generally consider to be a biker. So, I asked if people are ever surprised or standoffish after having learned about his hobby. He explained that in general people don’t make assumptions or act differently with him. Nick went on to say that he doesn’t really think of himself as a biker until he is on his bike, for him it’s like an escape, a chance to be free and not think about anything else except the road ahead of him. He explained the one thing he finds that connects these two worlds is the spontaneity.

Pic © Nicolas Jacques
Having done this interview, I got a different perspective on the world of motorcycles that many people don’t consider. When someone says biker, most people might immediately picture a stereotypical biker, but the reality is that anyone can be a biker. My interviewee is a hard-working chef/successful restaurant owner but when he’s on his bike he is a spontaneous lone ranger who enjoys the freedom, open air and the thrill of the ride. Anyone has the ability to be a biker, how one looks or what one does for work, isn’t what defines them as a biker, the only thing required is a bike. 

Acknowledgements


I would like to thank Nicolas Jacques for taking time out of his busy schedule to answer my questions and cooperating with the project and letting me share his biking experience.

About Adam McAuley


Adam McAuley studied at Champlain College Lennoxville located in Quebec, Canada. Interview With A Biker - Nicolas Jacques was written as part of a class project for a course titled Zen & The Art of Motorcycle Studies in the Department of Humanities.

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