Squid’ is a contraction of “Squirrelly Kid”, and comes from So Cal racers who were also involved in the Surfer culture.
Though the term is now widely used to describe street riders of questionable cornering skill, questionable judgment in demonstrations of horsepower and braking, questionable judgment in the protective clothing worn, and very questionable judgment in his/her friends, the meaning was actually developed at the racetrack.
Back in the day before track days (an organized event to allow anyone with a motorcycle and the price of admission to gain familiarity with a racetrack and learn to ride faster, more safely than on the street) were common and new racers frequently had no track experience – hence their unpredictable behavior and unsteady lines led to them being labeled “squirrelly”, as unpredictable surfers (or surfing conditions or surfing equipment) were also called.
From there, the term made it to the canyons of Southern California (a popular means to risk one’s hide while demonstrating riding skill at speeds well over the posted limit), then out to the rest of the world that reads about So Cal in magazines and apparently strives to be just like So Cal.
Squid’s are sometimes defined by action, not necessarily experience. Cruiser riders can be squids, too, IMHO.
Some actions include:
1) Going 100-plus MPH down an interstate highway with nothing but a wife-beater shirt and shorts on. Optional: girlfriend with tight shorts and bikini top. Nice to look at, but stupid nonetheless. Also included: anyone who feels like completion of an MSF class is a substitute for safety gear.
2) Someone who feels like they need to rev their bike over and over at each stoplight. This goes for both sport bikers and “loud pipe” cruiser riders as well.
3) Someone who has to swerve back-and-forth in their lane when starting off, like a NASCAR driver warming up their tires.
4) Kid who feels like they’re amongst the crowd since they bought a liter-bike as their first ride. They’re usually the ones in the back of the pack, scared to turn and duck-walking at each stoplight.
5) Young wannabe on a Sports Bike who makes snide comments to the 70-year old on a Gold Wing (who’s been riding since he was 20 and returned from Vietnam). Again, the young rider can be spotted later in the back of the pack, scared to turn and duck-walking at each stoplight.