Everyone is Intelligent, Only on Different Subjects

The story of when I was in a motorbike gang.

Annie Trevaskis


A photo of me, standing proudly behind my Yamaha RD350LC — a red and white one.
Photo of Author with her Yamaha RD350LC because she doesn’t have one of her Yamaha 125, and this is the best she could come up with

I can’t remember how I met the gang or what on earth they were thinking when they took me under their wing, and we would cycle hell for leather to Matlock Bath every weekend.

A photo of Matlock Bath with lots of motorcycle parked in front of the shops
Image Of Matlock Bath courtesy of the Derby Telegraph

They all had much more powerful motorbikes than my little Yamaha 125, but they would pull in every so often to give me time to catch them up. My gang name was Wasp because that is what my motorbike sounded like: wasps in a cardboard box.

I was the only girl. They were my heroes.

Most of them had spent time in prison or juvenile detention centres, and they did not have a single O-level between them. I was an undiagnosed autistic A-grade goodie-two-shoes.

From them, I learnt the truth of the maxim that “everyone is intelligent, only on different subjects” when we spent one Sunday afternoon watching The Day of The Jackal. I am autistic (did I mention that) and hate being interrupted when I am focused on a movie. They kept interrupting. I kept biting my tongue.

Film poster of The Day of the Jackal
Film poster of The Day of The Jackal

“Which side is he on?”
“Is he speaking French?”
“ What country are they in now.”
“Is he really disabled or just pretending?”

Then came this one: “What year is this set in?”
“1962,” I replied serenely, perfectly masking my intense irritation.
“It can’t be.”
Me: sigh. “Why not?”
Him: “Because that motorbike didn’t come out in green until 1964.”
The other gang members concurred.

Everyone is intelligent, only on different subjects.

I suppose strictly semantically speaking, it should be: Everyone is knowledgeable only on different subjects. But they had their own intelligence. They taught me motorcycle-related tips and the joy of being accepted, just the way I imperfectly am. Thank you, guys, wherever you may be.

©Annie Trevaskis 2022. All Rights Reserved



Annie Trevaskis

I came, I wrote, I conquered. That last bit might not be true, but at least I am putting up a good fight.