Ego and Control

Incident 1. Location : College

Male Colleague : I have to go home but I haven’t brought my vehicle today. Can you take me with you as your home is on that route?

Me: Sure. Come.

Male Colleague : I will drive. You sit behind.

Me : *gets off the vehicle*

Incident 2. Location : University

Old aged Head of Department walking towards main road which is 1 km away.

Me on vehicle :- Sir, can I drop you to the main road?

HoD : Ok. *Looks at me while I,on driver seat, make no effort to get down* Err no it is ok. I will go.

Me :- Ok sir. *drives off*

Incident 3. Location: College

Same HoD again (who by the way comes in college bus) : Are you going to University?

Me : Yes sir

HoD :- Ok. I will take you to the University in your vehicle.

Me :- *thinking frantically to save myself from accident and embarrassment* Sir, so and so sir is also going. He will take you.

HoD :- Ok. Good.

Incident 4. Location : University

Another Male Colleague :- Madam will you be going back to college?

Me : Yes after 2 hours. why?

Male Colleague :- I will be going with you.

Me :- Ok. But I will drive.

Male Colleague :- No I will. You don’t worry. I will take you back safely.

Me :- *slips out then only to go back to college*

Every time any male colleague asks for a lift from me on my scooty (as a last resort otherwise they ask male colleagues first), he expects me to ride pillion while he drives. I guess the reason is that he feels uncomfortable sitting behind a female driver. I suppose this feeling arises from the deep seated desire of control, to be the leader, to be dominant and basically the infamous male ego.

The problem is that I too have the need to control inside me when it comes to my stuff, in this case my vehicle. There are only few people whom I trust enough to relinquish my control and let them drive while I sit behind them.  Moreover I don’t see what is the big deal in being the pillion passenger when you are the one asking for the lift? If you sit behind me I promise

# I won’t apply sudden brakes to make you bump into my back.

# I won’t talk on mobile while driving.

# Inspite of all the specimens we have on our roads, I will drop you off safe and sound.

Asking for a lift and then saying you will drive while I sit behind is unacceptable. And if you feel discomfort being the pillion passenger while a girl drives, then please go and ask someone else. My vehicle, I drive – Thats it.

Tell me my male readers – If you hitch a lift from a girl on a two wheeler and you have no other option, are you willing to be the pillion passenger?

Tell me my female readers – If your male colleague asks for a lift on your two wheeler, would you prefer to drive or ride pillion?

142 thoughts on “Ego and Control

  1. Hmm.. I too am usually possessive about my things, so I don’t think I’ll let him drive. It does look a little weird though when I see girls driving and guys riding pillion, but maybe that’s because I’m used to seeing it the other way round. But if there’s no option, males should be okay to ride pillion I think. After all, its them who need a lift right?

  2. I’m a guy, and I’d just ride pillion… its not my bike so why risk it? Very good assessment of the collective male ego. Reminded me of the days when I used to take lifts from my tuition teacher as a 13 yr old!! Tried to hide my face as much as I could… LOL…

  3. Hmm…

    I did that a lot of time till my girlfriend finally said no to it. I believe its a false feeling of chivalry.. you shouldn’t feel hurt.. I have offered lifts to girls who asked me step down and drove my bike..

    But if this arrangement doesn’t go with you.. you reserve your right to say ‘No’…

    Again lots guys never had any vehicle so never had the privilege to drive a girl home(if not her than theirs) so.. old habits die hard.. 😀

  4. Well i always stay as a pillion passenger when the vehicle doesn’t belongs to me..

    And i haven’t actually hesitated to be pillion passenger when a lady drives it.. after all they save me energy and time to Reach the destination early.. why would i jeopardize a wonderful opportunity like these 😀

  5. First of all I need to ask permission from my wife if it is ok to ask for a lift from a female driving a two wheeler. If I survive that, then yes I can ride behind.

  6. Oh, Iam not just willing to be pillion passenger when girl is driving, infact I love it. lol..seriously..I guess it’s high time you girls take control of things, including driving scooties with men behind you.
    But, Iam not sure when will I do it next as there are not much scooties here. 🙂

  7. If the intention is just to try out riding my vehicle, I ll allow them if I I trust them to be careful. But if their intention is to avoid being seated behind a lady driver, they might as well take a walk!! 😉 And it will be obvious to which of the two categories they belong!

  8. That is so silly! This ridiculous need for control! If it is my vehicle and I am giving a man a lift – I will do the driving..

    In cars, I have never had this problem, incidently.. Does it mean that the ‘visibility factor’ makes a difference?

  9. 1. Oh no, I do that too. Its only because I love riding and I hate being a pillion rider ! Not all cases; there are good men too 😀

    2. LOL, probably, that oldie is scared of all those harassment cases !!! It happens, in this current era, we guys have to be a lot careful. There are no one to voice for us !! 😀

    3. I really didnt get this. Why were you embarassed ?

    4. LOL, hes too scared to ride with you 😉 Dont judge that poor guy, probably he is not even insured !!!

    From a male perspective, seriously, its not always the ego. There are so many other factors. I personally do not mind being a pillion rider, and at times, I would love to take control of the vehicle but not the situation.

      • Yeah, thats always there. Even I would feel horrible if anyone asks me those questions. But my point is that its not always about the ego and the control as mentioned in the post, “I suppose this feeling arises from the deep seated desire of control, to be the leader, to be dominant and basically the infamous male ego.” Sometimes we judge a person so easily; but we could also be wrong, right ?

        • this is what exactly I thought , when I read the post..for everything people deem men to be , maybe others imagine too much..if the guy was that control loving etc etc he wouldn’t even ask you in the first place!

    • @Vishesh As I have mentioned, I was asked for a life as a last resort. due to reasons there was no one else going at that time etc.

      @Vimmuuu If I have an accident or if I fall down, I will be terribly embarrassed!

      • @Vimal I guess the best way to assure its out of ego is to ask them directly why wont u sit behind. Though i dont think they will answer me honestly. Judgment is not based simply on these dialogues. I know these guys for 4 years!! So I have a pretty good idea when they mean what right?

  10. Reema, You go girl!

    With this attitude it is better that they walk. Even today it is some kind of embarrassment for them to sit next to a driving woman in a car or a woman riding a scooty.

  11. Of course i will INSIST on driving myself. No two thoughts on that. God knows how can male ego’s be satisfied by controlling a vehicle!

  12. Um.. I have taken guys pillion – ehhe .. just one. The per capita scooter is so high in chandigarh, you dont really get an opportunity.

    Maybe the guys cant handle sitting behind a woman because of the distractions – they dont want to be in a vulnerable situation – where they find themselves pawing the rider intentionally or otherwise.

  13. makes perfect sense that you should always be in control of your vehicle regardless of the sex of your passenger. if an accident happens you’ll be in trouble, even if it’s not the fault of the driver of your vehicle! i’ve only ever driven a car so that hasn’t been a problem for any of the male passengers i’ve taken.

  14. A good walk will do them good! 😉 What say???

    Though i haven’t had this experience ever… I have given lifts and got it too as and when required… but i don’t think my friends or colleagues will ever DARE to tell me to get off my own bike and ask me to sit on the back seat!! They would never hear the end of it…. :mrgreen:

    • As I said to Vimal, I guess the best way to assure its out of ego is to ask them directly why wont u sit behind. Though i dont think they will answer me honestly. Judgment is not based simply on these dialogues. I know these guys for 4 years!! So I have a pretty good idea when they mean what right?

  15. I don’t mind sitting behind a girl at all. Provided that I know how she drives.
    And I am sure you don’t want me to tell you other reason males refuse to seat behind female drivers…… 😀 😛
    Many of times its ego, but many times its just respect 😀 (guess why!!!) They just don’t want to give a bad impression when they meant no harm 😆

    I know a girl who happily gives lift only if the ‘male’ agrees to her conditions, ” I will drive, you will not try to teach me driving and keep distance” (exception: me, coz I have a good excuse, “I am fat and I require more space than you think….”) 😀 😀 😀

  16. Hmm…they should meet my husband. He’l let me drive my vehicle, his and any other where driving is required. His life is ruled not by ego , but by Laziness. I ain’t complaining:D
    Though I do see a lot of female driving male pillion cases here in NCR.

  17. Pampering to the male ego at the cost of one’s vehicle is not worth it. Sorry if I sound harsh but I feel strongly about this. I personally do not think that this is about driving skills, it’s about ego. The only person I would trust with my vehicle for instance is my husband as I know he is a good driver. No one else. One would have to see someone driving over a period of time to know the person’s driving skills.

  18. Hmmm Interesting.
    My case is a bit unusual,

    1- I prefer to drive myself, invariably its a male or female. May be I am too much of a control freak as you put it. Or too much of a driving enthusiast as I put it.

    2- I don’t take lifts generally, Would walk invariably.

    3- I don’t mind sitting on a Non Driving seat with a female driver but not on a two wheeler, I find the idea that u will have to hold her for support a bit embarrassing and uncomfortable as the lady driving might not like it. (I dont know if I am able to get the idea across of this point)

    • Why do u have to hold her for support?? :O :O There is usually somethings in these scooties for the pillion passenger to hold! It is usually absent in bikes.

  19. Whoever asks for the lift should ride pillion.

    I mean, ever heard of anyone (be it male ya female) asking an auto driver to take him/her to the college/office and asking “can I drive”?? 😀 It’s as simple as tht.

    The only difference between a person asking for a lift and travelling by public transport is that the former is free of cost.

    Reema, maybe you should pose your question the other way round:
    “Tell me my male readers – If a girl asks for a lift from you, are you willing to be the pillion passenger?” 😀 😀 😀

  20. i don’t know.. i’ve got no problem..
    but it IS a general notion that girls are bad drivers.. which is untrue.. but hey, india is the land of myths 😛

    or maybe they just want to ride ur scooty.. why should girls have all the fun 😉

  21. i’ve had personal experience.. and glad my senior at college didn’t even try to take control.. i didn’t even give the poor soul a chance. i stood rooted with my vehicle.. my body language was enough for him.. he had to sit behind. (more than once)

    and he was a gentleman. 🙂

    i must say that my bro.. till he didn’t know how to drive was happy sitting behing.. but as he learnt himself.. he always wanted to drive as if he felt ashamed of sitting behind me. though it could also mean he wanted to practice and enjoy driving more.. but still.. it was never about the skills of the driver..

  22. Reema-
    Nice post.. 🙂 I have no issues in riding as pillion with a female driver.

    There are many instances when I have to go with my sister on her vehicle and she would drive and i let her do that sometimes. The reason is I am much heavier than her and she drives very unstably to balance my weight on the pot hole ridden roads. On good roads she drives and i enjoy the ride. 😉

      • The thing here is my sister is younger to me and if she wants to do something which can hurt her then I have to protect her and this word would have come even if it was a brother. In that case it would be “let him do that” 🙂

  23. Of course, your gaadi u drive it.. no two thoughts about it… But then it’s generalization.. I actually haven’t seen this happening in this part.. Guys do not fret much being pillion… I know so many of them who ride pillion on their sister’s, cousin’s lover’s colleague’s gaadi..

  24. Thats funny. I have seen many men as pillion riders on many two wheelers in Bangalore. And if I was to ask anyone for a lift its understood that I will not be driving, and it should be same the other way around.

    Why would you want to take on the responsibility of anything happening with a vehicle which is not owned by you??

  25. I don’t mind actually sitting as a pillion with a gal riding.

    Once (and only once) I let a gal ride my pulsar while was sitting behind…

    whats the big deal !!!

  26. I agree with your “My vehicle, I drive” sentiment, its perfectly acceptable.

    But speaking from my experience on road so far (no generalisations or stereotypes) – of all the times some other driver has come inches close to killing me, 90% of the times its been a woman driver driving a car. Women driving two-wheelers seem to have been more sensible as they like any other two-wheeler driver are concerned about their safety first but in a car I think a person (man or woman) either gets a false feeling of safety or just can’t control it.

    I don’t know about anyone else but when some car comes inches close to sending me to kingdom come while I’m riding a bike at 90+ km/h, it does freaks me out. So the women car drivers do scare me a lot, I just try to put as much distance I can between us when I see one on the road.

    So to your question: If I really had no choice but to take a lift from a woman driver, then if she’s driving a car I’d seriously think asking her to let me drive or I’ll just walk till I can find some other transport. If its a woman on a two-wheeler, I wouldn’t mind riding pillion out of some misplaced ego! 🙂

    This reminds me – one of my friends, when on 1-2 occasions I had to ride with him on his bike, has always insisted that I drive & he’ll ride pillion (its another fact that I’ve more control on driving than him) & last time I had to insist that he drive & I’ll ride pillion! 😉

    • thanks for expressing your view. I agree some women do drive very badly as I wrote in my road rash post but I think people can vouch for me as a good driver 🙂 🙂

      • Ha ha ha, like I said, I don’t have any problem riding pillion with a woman driving a 2 wheeler as I haven’t seen one drive a 2 wheeler badly! 🙂

  27. Never owned a vehicle, and have taken loads of lifts. One even resulted in marriage 😉 I think the owner drives, simple as that. Or mebbe men think its their ‘duty’ to drive women (crazy) 🙂
    Btw, Congrats on winning the Indyblogger award!!!

    • Welcome to my blog. Thanks! keep visiting. You can just add ur blog url at dashboard>user>my profile>website. SO u wont have to type it everytime u comment anywhere.

  28. So many of u hv said it already .. If u wanna me to drop u on my vehicle, sit behind me 😛

    These men are more worried abt what ppl might ask them if they see them riding pillion rather than being really bothered abt it themselves! I hate that attitude 😉

  29. Hmm.. I don’t mind riding pillion. If she wants me to ride, i will.
    Though i’ll ask whether i ride or she is fine riding herself.

    it’s funny to read so many responses 🙂

  30. Wow…this is unbelievable. How can anybody ask for a lift and then ask to drive their vehicle? These are some weird men!

    If i were uncomfortable riding pillion, i wouldnt go. But saying that i will drive sounds too ridiculous to me!

  31. I am not sure for how many men “driving” is really symbolic and not just stands for maneuvering the vehicle..hmm actually I am surprised you would allow this to happen, I dont see a reason why the person requesting a lift should have a say as to who drives 🙂

  32. ..skipped the comments.. too many of them..

    well when on asks for a lift, I just cannot think, how can he(well as its about ur post else i would have written he/she) ask to drive the vehicle as well..totally unacceptable..

    well I personally do not have a problem, though I don’t why, I am not comfortable asking for lift from females, well.. dont want them to think otherwise…

    and call it my gender bias, male ego or watever… I have not known a single good female drving a vehicle nicely..

      • just asked ’cause, from your hilarious recounting of life’s experiences with a scooty, all your friends, seniors, class mates etc seemed so very afraid to sit behind you. there should be some pertinent reason and even though you have emerged out of situations unscathed (touchwood), statistics might show your pillion riders regularly getting into hospitals and emerging all swathed in bandages. (emni bol-lam. tumi mone koro na!)

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  35. Very interesting comments! Dunno what led me to this link , but the article and the comments made for a very interesting read.
    I have not had too many opportunities to ask for lifts on two wheelers , from either gender, but if the owner is a female , it never occurred to me to ask if I could ride. Infact, back in college, a rather petite girl asked me for a lift , and then insisted on riding my motorcycle all the way back to her place.And yes,inspite of being common in Pune, there were stares, but you notice stares only if you want to. With my wife though, if we are taking the scooter somewhere, its natural for her to ride because I find it uncomfortable to balance a scooter compared to my bike, and she is a good rider, knows the bylanes, and like a typical girl, can ride, talk to me, window shop, dart through narrow lanes at the same time!

  36. Just stumbled across this today.
    Infact, I never learnt how to ride a geared bike properly, and my wife was riding a Hero Honda Splendor since her college days. With 67,000 kms done, she still has it.
    I must be the first guy who was taught riding a bike by his wife! 😀 ,
    My friends earlier used to feel odd when she used to take me around everywhere , but now no issues. I personally never had any to begin with. I am happy to be a pillion with a very good rider.

  37. I have ridden pillion with a woman or a girl at least once a year during my life. I have also ridden quite long distances as apillion with a woman and I feel no embarrassment at all. The women does NOT neede tp have a good figure and can be any age. Several times I have been on pillion with women 2 to 3 times my age. If more men rode pill;ion behind their women folk there would bne fewer motrcycle accidents.

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