It’s a feature, not a bug

My first bike was a little, 250cc Honda Nighthawk I bought new from the dealership. Soon after I got it home, I discovered it was hard to get into neutral while the engine was running. It would just jump over neutral going from first to second, or second to first. As it was a new bike I took it back to the dealer to get that fixed. I found the guy who sold me the bike and told him about the problem. He said, “It’s supposed to do that.” This sounded suspiciously like the old IT line of, “It’s a feature, not a bug.”
“It’s supposed to be hard to get into neutral?” I asked the guy, making no attempt to hide my incredulity. “What’s the point of that?”
“Well,” the guy explains, “You don’t want to be in the middle of an intersection, staring at an oncoming 18-wheeler, and hit neutral trying to go to second.”
I wasn’t totally convinced, but I left without having them tear into my transmission. That was several years ago.
I was making a long left turn a few days ago at a large, multilane intersection. I indulged in one of the bad habits I’ve allowed to develop and upshifted with the bike in a peg scraping lean. Or a least that’s what I meant to do. What I actually did was pop into neutral. It’s amazing that such a small thing could change the situation so completely in less than a second. With no power going to the ground, and the bike leaned over, I had no control.
There are only two ways to stand a bike back up. Tighten the turn, or increase power. With the transmission in neutral, I couldn’t get power from the engine into the bike. I was already scraping the peg, so I couldn’t lean over any more to tighten the turn. Fortunately, the bike had enough centripetal energy to stay on its wheels until I could find a gear and get power to the back tire again.
The sales guy was right. It’s not a bug. It is a feature—one I don’t want to do without.

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