The quiet syndrome. Just a reflection of a stereotype.

Sometimes I wonder about people. No, I often wonder about people. You see, last week I went for a wander down the highway, to enjoy the twists and turns of a forested landscape. Hours later, in need of a break, I rolled my Harley up into a diner that reminded me of a time I’ve never seen, but only heard of. A simple time. A greasy spoon and bouffant hairdos. The glass door jingled a bell as I pushed on through into aromas of grilling food and the faint sound of a juke in the corner playing some country tune. The stool at the bar-style counter seemed broken in just right. The waitress, after a bit of counter-wiping in thought, measuring me with shifty glances through narrowed eyes, gave me a dutiful smile and sashayed on over. I returned the smile to the pretty lady, and she had already read my mind as she filled my cup with hot black joe. No words were shared, only a few polite grins, and that is the issue I always seem to have. Heads turn wherever I go, some eyes roll, some smiles do twitch, whispering and girly giggles reach my ears, and some of the alpha-males seem to puff up the chest a bit, so in answer to that I hide my smirk. However, I can always feel judgement being cast my way, especially in church country. I stay clean-cut and healthy. Leather chaps. Boots that do jingle a bit due to the zipper on back. The worn jacket that has seen the miles. People look at me, wary of my presence. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not complaining. In fact, I prefer it this way. However, I cannot help but wonder if this is the biker-syndrome I live with? Does the general public still hang onto the stereotype? Or is it just me? Don’t trust the quiet man in six-feet of leather. So I sip my coffee. I listen. I was always that way; I was trained that way. I enjoy the various sounds of silence while mentally taking notes for my work. I use my writing to convey my thoughts. Do I live in a fantasy world? Yes. Because there are more monsters in reality than in fantasy, just take a look at the world news. Anyway, right here, this is where I talk. And to finish the diner story I will just say that after a bit, the waitress and I did enjoy casual conversation about this and that. Her name was Maya. Yep, Maya the waitress. It’s funny how if you have the guts to get to know a quiet person, a friendship can result. And a biker is a friend for life. Thank you for listening.

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