Greetings all.  I had a question pop into my mind a couple of nights ago when I was watching a movie called “Wild Hogs.”  Incidentally, if you haven’t seen or heard of this movie, it is about four guys who ride motorcycles on the weekends; and as they quickly approach their midlife, they decide to take a cross-country trip from Ohio to California.  Along the way, they run into a little trouble with some “real” bikers. Overall, I think it is a good movie, but that isn’t the reason for this blog.  During the movie, one of the main characters, the real biker bad guy, refers to the foursome as “posers,” a term used to describe people who pretend to be something they are not.

Now if we look at life and all the activities that are open to us, you have those who live certain activities and those who do them. What I mean by “live” is these people fully invest themselves into a particular lifestyle.  You see this in just about everything from motorcycling, to RVing, to firefighting, to the military.

So my question is if you don’t “live” an activity does that make you a poser? I emphatically say no! Let me explain.  

If you know me, then you know that I am in the military and have been for many years, but for most of those years I’ve been a reservist.  The definition of a reservist is a person who participates in military duties one weekend a month and two weeks a year. Okay, now if you really know me, you’ve seen my schedule and know that I am required to perform my reservist duties far more often than the minimum requirement.  Even when not on duty, I am expected to perform certain tasks due to my grade and position.  Now does that mean I am “playing” Army versus the soldiers who do it for a living? Personally, I don’t think so; to point out, I am as skilled as those who serve on active duty, and I am required to do the same job as them.  The difference between a reservist and an active duty member is I have an opportunity to obtain a commercial position while simultaneously serving my country, albeit not full-time. In addition to serving in the military, I am also a volunteer firefighter.  Does this mean, then, that I am not a professional firefighter?  Hell no it doesn’t.  It simply means that I am willing to do the same job as a paid firefighter but without financial compensation; I attend official training sessions and participate in drills to keep my skills sharp–I just don’t do it every three days.

Moreover, there are people who RV full-time and there are those who do it on the weekend or whenever it is convenient for them. They are still expected, however, to adhere to the requirements involved with operating an RV; the only difference is most of the time they live in a home that is attached to a concrete foundation.  Which brings me to motorcycles: you have people who ride all the time, others who ride seasonally, and others who ride when there is a parade.  The skills necessary to obtain a permit to ride a motorcycle legally are the same for all, regardless of how much one rides.  While each rider strives to maintain the proper skills in a manner that best fits his or her busy life, every rider is expected to control his or her bike safely at all times.  Personally speaking, I typically ride seasonally, more specifically, from March to November.  In fact, I try to ride my bike whenever the weather permits, which means I am not always looking for the ideal sunny 80-degree day; on the other hand, I won’t pull out the bike if the weatherman calls for rain all day, but I don’t mind riding in the rain if the potential for it is low (30% or lower).

To emphasize, just because someone doesn’t devote all of his or her energy to an activity doesn’t suggest that he or she is a poser. The aforementioned activities are obviously open to all, and those who opt to participate in them do so in a manner that works for them.  I don’t consider these people posers, or weekend warriors, or pretenders for that matter; instead, I consider them doers.  All doers, in my view, should be congratulated on getting out and engaging themselves in something other than sitting on the couch and watching the paint peel while simultaneously feeling the width of their ass expand.

What do you think?  Do you think people are posers because they don’t devote full measure to a particular activity, and if so, why?