Things we think of while riding down the road

Archive for July, 2009

Interesting Rides

I love creativity with motorcycles. I love a good cafe racer, a clean bobber and a nice chopper. When I say ‘chopper’ I don’t mean one of those $50K jobs you see on TV from the dysfunctional family in New York or a star struck guy from So Cal, I mean a nice long bike built by a guy in his garage with some help from a few friends. But then I really head off the scale. Side cars.100_1295

My good friend and traveling partner Jeff got me hooked on Sidecars a few years back. He got himself a older BMW R80 with a rig and started loading it up. I have talked about Jeff many times, he is the McGyver of our group of riding friends. If your bike quits running, Jeff probably has the part to get you going again. If you forgot something on a week long ride, Jeff probably has it in some bag somewhere on his motorcycle. You know, as I look back over some pictures, you generally can’t see Jeff’s bike just luggage? Well, when he got a sidecar rig you could just see his brain spinning…I can carry this and this and this and this and I can’t forget that…I have always wondered where he found room for his daughter Amy?

Jeff and I have been to the big Griffith Park, California SideCar Rally more than a couple of times..the rally is partially sponsored by Doug Bingham of Sidestrider Side cars www.sidestrider.com and is always lets say..entertaining. We have seen some very creative rigs there and Jeff has gotten some very strange ideas for a new ride. Fortunately he has a wife with more sense than he. But, this really did pique his interest. Hey how can you not like a scooter with a VW van attached??scooter side car VW

Well, as things tend to happen to all of us motorcyclists when we get intrigued by something, we may get carried away a bit, in this case it’s carrying people away. Looking through the internet for interesting rides I came across www.motorcyclefunerals.com. After I stopped chuckling I thought “this is way too cool”. I pulled my wife away from her website work to look at this hoping she would like it as much as I did and in the back of my mind hoping she would think it a great idea to do here. No such luck. She looked at me, knowing what was going on in my motorcycle addled brain and said..”NO”. Back to her web work and that was the end of that. Hearse_1

Like I said, I was looking for interesting rides and really there are none more interesting I think than sidecars. Besides being utilitarian, they offer a lot of style, a lot of fun and everyone points and stares..in a good way.

So whether you are looking for utility, style or fun…a way to haul groceries, Fido or Uncle Quido..a sidecar rig may find it’s way into your garage. Hey, Uncle Quido would love to be there when you ‘fly the car’..especially with him in it

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Time flies when you’re having fun

Time flies when you’re having fun..or…How did I get from there to here..

I have a birthday coming up soon, at this point in life they seem to come pretty quickly, and I’m sure like most of us we reflect on our lives. What have we done and what haven’t we done. What did we want to do and what did we actually do. Where did the time go?

I have ridden nearly three quarters of a million miles on a motorcycle over the past forty years. From riding around the town I lived in, to desert racing, enduro’s, roadracing, cross country trips, commuting to work..and I have loved every mile. I have photo’s and memories, service bills and maps…but things have changed. Turn6Paul

Now I ride shorter distances for fun. I hang out with my other rider friends, we talk about the good old days, the Bonneville I rode, the Norton Mike rode, the trips Jeff took on his old BMW, how fast we were on the race track, rebuilding a bike over night in a hotel room…those were great days or as Bruce Springsteen sang,,,”the Glory days”

I still hang out at the biker bars, play some darts, enjoy my Guinness, talk story and compare broken bones. Yes, being a motorcyclist is a wonderful life..but again, how did I get here from there???aarp biker bar