Went to a Harley dealer open-house last weekend (free food & Beer). After looking at the other bikes for a while, sat in the shade with a couple of obvious old-timers (grey hair, 1000 yrd. stare, permament wrinkles around the eyes from laughin' at themselves, greasy broken fingernails, ect.) and discussed this subject. The general consensus was that it usually takes about 7-10 yrs of riding before they really begin to get it: that in the words of the Bishop of The Church of The Divine Amplitude "We're all in this together! So help your Brother Biker!" (The Congregation answered with shouts of "Haleuja!", and "Turn it up!" and "LOUDER!") Then we discussed road conditions, good travelin' routes and bars. Also the proliferation of Women bikers. It was universally agreed that we liked the trend.
Scary thing: my 54 KH was, by more that twenty years, the oldest bike there. NO other flattys, NO iron head XL's, NO pans, and ONE alt-Shovel. At least it was a rigid. G
P.S. I have known some REALLy good Women mechanics, and some really moronic male ones.