My first bike was a Suzuki GS500E that I used as a daily driver in college (maneuvering and parking on campus became SO MUCH easier).
I bought the bike used, knowing absolutely nothing about motorcycles. So I took the MSF course, got my license, and immediately starting daily driving it. At this point I hadn't done any maintenance yet, and I really hadn't inspected the bike very thoroughly.
So this one day, shortly after getting the license, I pull up to the stop sign heading out of my neighborhood and I get ready to make my right turn out onto the road. As I make the turn, the rear wheel slips out from under me and suddenly the bike is almost all the way down on it's side. Now this was a sport bike, with pretty decent ground clearance, and it was far enough over that the foot peg was folded up pinning my boot. As this is happening, literally the only thought going through my head is that I REALLY didn't want to lay down the bike. So instead of getting myself clear to avoid injury, like any sane person might have, I did my best to get the bike back up. I shifted myself as upright as possible, and gave the bike as much throttle as I could. Somehow the rear end caught traction for a moment, the bike jumped upright, lurched forward, and then the rear end lost traction again and fishtailed back and forth like you wouldn't believe. So now I'm heading down a narrow 2-lane road, with deep ditches on either side, with oncoming traffic in the other lane, and with my rear end sliding back and forth threatening to high side and launch me into an oncoming camaro. By the grace of God, the rear wheel caught traction while parallel to the front and all at once I was speeding down the road like nothing had happened.
As soon as I could pull over, I parked at a gas station and inspected my tires. I don't know if the previous owner did non-stop burnouts, or just rode a lot of miles in a straight line, but there was zero tread left in the middle of the rear tire and seemingly brand new tread on the sides (this explains why the bike caught traction when it was nearly on it's side, but kept losing traction as soon as it was upright). Both tires were also significantly under filled.
This whole situation taught me a couple of important lessons:
1. God definitely has my back
2. NEVER take your tires for granted
3. ALWAYS thoroughly inspect a used bike before riding it
I've had a couple of other close calls, but I think this is the only one that's particularly interesting.
Never attribute to villainy that which is adequately explained by stupidity.