There is a certain rebellious longing in me that has always had a desire to be unrestrained and wild. Not in a bad way really. No lawbreaking or substances involved. Just a desire to hop on a Harley and ride … fast, furious, free. Yes, underneath it all I harbor biker babe-itis.
So it shouldn’t surprise you to know that this morning on my way to work I was very intrigued by the grizzled biker, (with requisite beard, long hair and head to toe leather), sporting his B.A.C.A. jacket as we headed for the same destination … Starbucks. Whoo hoo. My chance to walk on the wild side and learn a bit about his organization. I like the idea that these riders have a reputation as rough and tough, not to be reckoned with, devil-may-care lawlessness, taking a strangers child under his or her collective wing and offering a tender heart and safe haven when feeling unsafe due to abuse. This organization has written bylaws, an oath and 4 levels of intervention, plus court appearance guidelines to assist and provide support to someone else’s child. I like knowing that these rowdies are ready and willing at a moments notice, to deploy "a ride, uniting as many BACA members as are able to attend. We will ride as a group to the child’s house where the parent(s) / Guardians will be present to assist us in presenting the child with a patch, stickers, and a Polaroid photograph of the child with his/her new biker family. If the child is afraid, it is our hope the child will use the photograph as a comfort to convey the message "I am not alone, and you don’t want to mess with my family." ( http://www.bacausa.com)
Our conversation after my initial "tell me about B.A.C.A" questioning:
ME: "Do the families really welcome you into their homes?"
TOUGH GUY (who really wasn’t tough at all and had a dimple that would melt your heart): "Look, we don’t force ourselves on them, the kids really like us, we go for them. Parents sometimes don’t know what they are doing is bad for the kid. We want them to know they can’t hurt a child and get away with it."
ME: "Do the kids really call you? Ask you to come over? Are they betraying the family ‘secrets’ ?"
TOUGH GUY (smiling, there’s that dimple again): "Yeah, we get calls all the time. You should see the smiles when we show up. The kid has been let down so many times that I think they can be pretty surprised when we follow through and show up whenever they need us." (note there was no response to the betrayal question … I think he thought I was a real dope at this point)
So that’s the gist of the conversation which obviously prompted me to check out the website
A few brief moments very well spent as the Starbucks barista prepared our orders, (my treat, it’s only fair to give back), and a great opportunity to learn something new. So once again, my inner rebelliousness is crying to be set free ’cause not only could I ride, I could also be a B.A.C.A. babe as well …