The Dancer in the Shadows

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Forms of the Iron Horse

The most common use of the phrase "Iron Horse" refers to the steam locomotives that replaced horse powered overland transit. That always seemed strange to me as a kid because the trains bore no resemblance to horses at all. I found it seemed to fit motorcycles much better, as riding motorcycles and riding horses took many of the same skills, and had similar feelings and appearances.

At the time, many of my older friends who rode motorcycles were calling them "Iron Horses" as they shared a background of horseback riding as well, and perhaps had not realized that the phrase already had a connotation in wider use referring to steam locomotives. Growing up around them, I adopted their use of it as well, and still often refer to my motorcycle as my "Iron Horse" to this day.

And all of this drifted through my mind because I rode my motorcycle to work today.

--- The Dancer in the Shadows

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