As long as I'm grouching about current styles in motorcycle clothing, let me say that a current style in bikes, that is to say, "chopper chic," sucks too. Choppers used to be cool because they expressed the ideas and feelings of an individual rider or builder; they were a rebellion against convention, an honest expression of self. Thanks to formulaic TV shows and a public that flocks to anything bright and shiny like raccoons to a tin can, choppers are now becoming so pervasive that they are rapidly becoming caricatures of themselves.
You can only produce so many Harley-clone engined, pre-fab chassis, flame painted, skull festooned bikes before they become about as unique as a Honda Shadow. You can only sell so many millions of chopper branded t-shirts before no one with any appreciation for bikes would be caught dead in one. When I see 300lb women at Wal-Mart pushing shopping carts full of junk food while wearing a West Coast Choppers t-shirt or an OCC t-shirt I'm thinking that cool has pretty much vacated the premises for those two brands.
Motorcycles in and of themselves are special machines, possesing a aura that makes them more than just machines. To use one as a fashion statement is perhaps worse than wearing a contrived leather biker jacket with an advertising agency generated brand name emblazoned on it.
The guys at a web site called Chopper Flop would seem to agree with me or I agree with them. Either way, their "Cool Guide to Chopper Style" is right on the mark, one of those things I wish I'd written except that I'd have been meaner and more ornery about it than they were.
I'm not so sure the Chopper Flop guys are not just trying to capitalize on a small backlash to chopper chic by selling t-shirts but this is America and it's our nature to squeeze a fad for every $ we can so more power to them. Heck, the day Wal-Mart calls and wants to do an official "Forty Years on Two Wheels" line of t-shirts I'm selling out just like everyone else. I'll have to draw the line at putting a skull, Iron Cross, or flames on the shirts though. I'm thinking "Oscar the Grouch" on a Bultaco would be more fitting.