I've had a revelation, and it's come in the unlikely form of a Yamaha YBR125. I bought it as a cheap-as-chips mode of transport for commuting, and already it has surpassed expectations.
Having just completed my first week commuting on this little bundle of joy I can proudly announce that it has returned 121mpg, costing just £7.50 in petrol for a week's travel to and from work - that's only £1.50 a day!
So despite having had an exhausting week at work, and with temperatures climbing into the region where I generally want to hide in the corner being a sweaty mess clutching yet another pint of homebrew, I've still managed to arrive home with a big silly grin on my face.
OK, the little YBR is never going to set anyone's hair on fire with only 10bhp on tap, but it keeps up with the traffic, and slips past it when it comes to a grinding halt. Plus with ridiculously low road tax, insurance, and parts costs I really feel this is one of the best decisions I've ever made. With the added benefit of being yet another subtle way in which I've been able to opt out of the rat race.
I love being able to do anything different from the masses; I love being just that little bit different and sticking two fingers up at the sort of convention that has the majority scrabbling to have everything bigger or better than the next person, whether it's a super-frugal motorcycle, not watching TV or having a TV license, or simply not caring that I don't have fancy foreign holidays.
The decision to run such a vehicle wasn't taken lightly, and I've lost count of the hours, days, and months I spent agonizing over the whys and wherefores of all the possible permutations of vehicles that would make the most sense. The 1200 Bandit remains - there's no way I'm getting rid of that yet, and running the two bikes is still half the cost of one small car. Besides, riding something with all the performance of a wilting lettuce all week means that the big fella is guaranteed to scare the shit out of me when I take it out at the weekend. Commuting daily on a big bike makes you become blase to its performance capabilities and too easily you find yourself being very naughty indeed without even trying, until one day you catch yourself being a loony and the realisation hits you that the sense of immortality that you've built up around yourself could very soon come crashing down around your ears leaving you trying to convince either the cops or St Peter that "It wasn't my fault, guv..."
So as well as being a smile-inducing, wallet-friendly two fingered salute that allows you to arrive at your destination calm and collected, this featherweight little 125 is also a much needed reality check that could ultimately extend my life expectancy beyond what it has been of late.
So the big revelation is that oddly enough, it doesn't have to be fast to be fun. My acceleration-fuelled adrenaline-junkie alter-ego can quite easily be controlled with the alternative thrill of trying to not slow down for the twisty bits to avoid the tedium of trying to regain speed again.
It's sometimes said that good things come in small packages, and in this case I think it might just be true.