Sunday, June 27, 2010

In the shadows

Do you ever have those moments, moments of clarity. They're usually associated with hobbies, building, creating, or something one is completely passionate about. Those moments are very elusive and it can take anywhere from seconds to years to realize those moments. There have been 3 things in my life that have let me experience those moments, playing and writing music, building Jeeps, and now motorcycles. When I had my Meanstreak, the vision was clear, I knew exactly where I wanted to go with it. Then before I knew what happened, that was taken from me and I had to start over. I knew I didn't want to the same thing again, not because I didn't like it, far from it, I loved that bike. I wanted to do something different just because I had the chance to. I had the opportunity to try something different, a different experience. I knew I loved riding, putting on miles, just being in the wind. No destination, just a direction. So I figured this time around I wanted to try American made so I got a Sportster last December. I've spent the last 7 months racking up the miles(almost 8000 miles so far), enjoying every minute of it. At the same time I'm looking at everything, learning as much as possible, trying to figure out where I want to go(build-wise), there's so many cool builds out there, what do I want, what fits me? Now maybe I'm just a lunatic, but one of the things I think about while riding is what I want to do to my bike next. Ever since I got into Harley's it's been elusive, I'm new to them, trying learn about them, etc, I spend alot of hours just thinking, lol! Then tonight I was out for a solo ride, nothing very long, right around 70 miles of backroads this evening. I'm cruisin' down a deserted backroad just before sunset, I looked to my left and there it was, that moment of clarity. It was riding right next to me, the vision of what I wanted, right there.. in the shadows.

Sorry to leave everyone hangin', but I'm not revealing anything until it's actually underway, to let the proverbial "cat" out of the bag would jinx it from the get go.

My rant for the day.

I got up late this morning, not a little late but a lot late, lol! It was damn near noon by the time I pryed my head off the pillow, oh well, that's what Sundays are for! I headed downstairs for my morning ritual of coffee(lots of it) and internet. While I'm cruisin' the web, I decide to see what's up on Facebook. Now I'm not a huge FB fan, I don't play the silly ass games and I don't accept random friend invites, but it is a great way to keep up with family and real friends. There's a young man that I'm friends with on FB, he used to live up the street from us and is like part of our family, his status was funny and without quoting directly, he commented on something you'd only find in America and that America was a great place. A girl replied that obviously you've never lived anywhere else because America sucks. EXCUSE ME! This girl is a whopping 16 years old, What did she do, spend a week in Europe? WTF? This really irritates the shit out of me, you're 16 fuckin' years old, still wet behind the ears, haven't done shit to contribute to society in general, and somehow you have the right to say America sucks! Oh wait, you do have that right, because this is America, everyone has that right. People, family, friends, sons, daughters, mothers and fathers spilled their blood so you have that right. You pompous little bitch! Trying going to another country and speaking out against their government and see what happens. Oh and before I go to far I should say I have lived in another country. I didn't just visit on a vacation with my rich family, I served America and lived in South Korea for 3 years, not exactly a vacation. It was a life changing experience, not only did I gain a greater appreciation for America, I gained a greater respect for other nations and their beliefs. We could learn alot from other countries if it weren't for our politicians and I mean both sides, conservative and liberal, politicians are thieves and liars, only concerned about who's greasing thier pockets instead of doing what is in the best interest of America.

America is a great nation, but we are not without our problems, there are so many things that need improvement, things that would make America better. But to say America sucks is just wrong in so many ways. Although you do have that right, because America is a free nation.

Here's some random suggestions-
You want to come to America illegally and take advantage of what America has to offer? Here's an alternative, if we catch you we don't deport you. You serve in the Immigrant Militia. We send you to the hottest combat zones that America is involved in and if you survive and serve America honorably for 5 years you automatically gain citizenship, voting rights, and everything America has to offer, with one exception, you may never be president, you weren't born here. Oh, you're a woman, tough shit, we believe in equal rights here.

You want to own land in America and aren't a citizen? Too bad. Aint gonna happen. That is a privilege reserved for citizens.

You think America sucks and you're an American citizen? Well guess what, today is your lucky day! We will give you a one way ticket to the country of your choice, denounce you as an American citizen, and ban you from ever returning to America. Pack your shit and get the fuck out, you are not welcome here.

Am I being insensative? You damn right I am! America doesn't need sensitivity training, she needs some backbone! You say I'm not being politically correct? Damn right I'm not! Being PC is a fucking joke, it's just figuring out cute ways to insult someone or something. Be an adult, look at reality, and call a spade a spade.

Did I offend you? Yes? Good. Maybe you needed to be offended, just like I was when I read that 16 year old girls comment. I may not agree with it, but I will defend her right to say it because that's what freedom is.

Are you from another country reading this? If so, don't think that I'm anti everyone that's not American. The fact is, I'm not. I have a great deal of respect for other nations and cultures. America has had and still has great allies in other nations and we would not enjoy our freedom if it wasn't for them. I would expect any citizen of another nation be as patriotic towards theirs as I am mine.


While we on our ride today we stopped at a diner in Marysville, Kansas. They usually play surf music and other stuff from the 50's and some stuff from the 60's. Not really what I'm into, but in the middle of all that they played one of my favorite songs from my youth. "One" by Three Dog Night. I think I first heard this song in '73 or '74, but I'm not sure, it was a long time ago and I haven't heard this song in ages. I still like it.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Another great ride!

Finally after what seems like endless rain we had a dry weekend! My wife and I saddled up and hit the road. Instead of picking a destination, we pick a direction and go. Today's ride would be north by northeast, a direction we haven't explored much yet. Today was also one of the hottest days yet this summer, going through one town we saw 99* on a bank clock but it still felt great to be in the wind. Going our chosen direction today meant that we were going to be riding mainly in Nebraska. That's not necessarily a bad thing, but the roads in Nebraska leave alot to be desired and Nebraska is also a helmet mandatory state. So I put on my half helmet, my wife in her fullface(which is normal for her, regardless where we ride)and we headed into the "Corn Husker" state.

Our first stop was for gas and water(got to stay hydrated in this heat!) at a truck stop just north of Beatrice, Nebraska.

Next stop was at Frontier Harley Davidson in Lincoln, Nebraska. I usually don't have alot good to say about dealerships, but Frontier is an exception. I bought my Sportster from them, and unlike any other dealer I've worked with, they treated me great and made sure I was going to be happy with my Harley, top notch customer service.

As soon as we walked in the front door, there was the bike I have been lusting after since I first saw it. The Harley 48. I absolutely love this bike, who knows, maybe sometime down the rode one will be in my garage, lol!

Now if you're ever in the area it's is definitely worth a stop at Frontier even if you're not buying anything. They have one of the coolest collection of vintage Harleys, here are just a few of my personal favorites.

A HD snowmobile!!

How about an HD dual-sport!

From Frontier we headed east on highway 2 to highway 75 south and a fuel stop in Auburn, Nebraska. There was some kind of rodeo going on. I'm not much of a fan of redneck games so we kept moving.

Another stop just for the hell of it in Table Rock, Nebraska. Not much here.

Ok, that's not fair, Table Rock is small, 350-some people, but this was a better picture, lol!

Back in Kansas!
The land of great roads(quality, not twistiness)and choice! The helmet came off, although my wife kept hers on.
We had a great ride, covered about 272 miles in about 6 hrs. The southeast corner of Nebraska has some very scenic roads, but I don't think they spend alot of money on highway maintenance. It was amazing how the road condition changed at the state line. If they'd spend more money on their roads they would probably get more vistors to an otherwise beautiful state.

Saturday, June 19, 2010


No riding today. At 7 this morning it was sunny and looking to be a nice day. By 8am a severe thunderstorm rolled in complete with damaging winds, torrential rain, hail, and of course thunder and lightning. Luckily our house was not damaged, but we have a hell of a mess in the yard to clean up. Things could have been much worse, the worst part for us was no power for about 3 hours. Here's some pics of the aftermath.

A few miles..

I haven't gotten many miles on this weekend yet, but there's still a day left! My wife and I did get out yesterday for a bit. I tried my hand at taking some shots while in motion, they didn't turn out too bad for a first effort.

While we were out we stopped by a local indy shop, Henry's Chop Shop in Frankfort, Kansas. The guys got a lot of talent and is building some very cool stuff!
kick ass bobber!

Another cool chop!

Sporty powered golf cart!

Friday, June 18, 2010


Cheap beer headache.... Got home after a long hot day at work(I work in a metal shop) and man did that Keystone taste good, today I pay for it, lol! Drink a bunch of water, pop some aspirin and ride, that's my hangover cure.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Rainy days suck.

Especially when they're on a weekend! I'd rather be riding!!

New addition

Not to the "stable", but to our family. We've had a few pets over the years, but they've always been outdoor pets. My wife has never liked the idea of an indoor dog or cat, me on the other hand wouldn't mind at all, so I've always respected my wife's wishes and never pushed the issue. Last winter things changed. I have no idea why, but for whatever reason my wife allowed our son James to bring a kitten into the house. He and his ex-girlfriend had adopted a kitten together and somehow managed to convince my wife to let them do kind of a joint custody deal with the kitten (Bella) spending time at our house and at his girlfriends. Now my wife has always claimed not to like cats much, I have to call bullshit on that, lol! It started with her bringing little cat toys home from the store, I'd say "For not liking cats, you sure are trying to spoil her." my wife would reply, "I don"t like cats, I just don't want her to be bored." I call bullshit again, lol!  Myself on the other hand have always liked cats, they're independent, playful, mysterious, and I love watching them stalk whatever it is they're after. I can spend hours playing with cats or just watching them do their thing.

Over time Bella was spending less and less time here and more at her other house which was ok by us, after all it was their cat. Unfortunately the other home is in the country next to the highway and Bella got out and got too close to the highway and got hit by a car. While we were all saddened by that, that's just the way things go sometimes.

During the next few months my wife would want to stop by Petco, don't like cats huh? LOL! After not finding many kittens I figured she had given up on her search. A few weeks I came home from work and when I walked in the house my wife was acting weird and James was sitting at the table just giggling. I knew they were up to something, but couldn't quite figure out what. It took me 2 trips into the kitchen to figure out what was going on, there I saw a little pet carrier, litter box, and food and water bowls. For an early Fathers Day present, they got me a kitten! Meet Tigger-

Would you turn off that damn flash!

Still a little camera shy

Tigger is a female Abyssinian mix that they adopted from a local animal shelter. She's now 11 weeks old and is one of the most playful kittens I've ever been around. She's not much of a lap cat, she'd rather run and play, but that's what makes her Tigger, she bouncy and fun! But when she's tired she has no problems climbing up on you and passing out. As for my wife not liking cats, I still call bullshit. When we walk in the door from work the first thing my wife does is call for Tigger and spends a few minutes playing with her, don't like cats huh? LOL! I'm just as smitten with Tigger and am very happy to have her as part of our family. A big thanx to my wife and James for a wonderful Fathers Day present!

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Sunday Ride

The best way to end up a great weekend is to ride. So that's what we did, my oldest son, James, and my wife and I saddled up for a great Sunday ride. We got a new camera so James took on photo duties. There's not alot for words so I'll let the pics talk.

What a weekend!! Technology is such an amazing thing. The year I got out of high school(1984), our school got it's very 1st computer, our class was on it's way out so we didn't get any time in on it. Fast forward to 1999. We got our 1st computer and I started learning my way around it and the web. I got a long way to go, lol! Anyway, now I can "Skype" with my son, Jayson, in Spain, complete with video, draw things in 3D and numerous other things thanks to computers and the web. Where is this going you may ask. Well, let's back up a few years. From 1990 to 1992 I was stationed at Ft. Riley, Kansas. When I got out, and through numerous moves and jobs, I lost track of all of my friends I was stationed with. That is until this past March. We were visiting my son Jayson in Gulfport, Ms and Jayson said, "Did you know a guy named Jay when you were on Ft. Riley?" I was shocked, I told him yes I did, he was my best friend there and we lost track of each other over the years. Jayson said, "He's looking for you on Facebook." Within minutes I was back in touch with my best friend that I had lost contact with 18 years ago! Technology is amazing! We continued to communicate via Facebook and this past weekend he traveled to my house for a reunion. A little back-story, when I met Jay on Ft. Riley, he didn't ride, but I did. He wanted to learn in the worst way so I taught him. After all these years, he still rides! Although he didn't ride his bike here, I have 2, so no problem!! Now Jay rides a CBR1000, time to teach him the way of the Harley!
Jay learning the Harley
Jay on my Harley and me on my Vulcan 900
Jay and I cruisin' through Marysville, Kansas
Getting back to the house after the ride
A little clownin' and bs'n
Enjoying beer and BBQ!
No clue what he's taking a picture of, lol!

As with all good things, they must come to an end. This past weekend was a great one, reconnecting with Jay was priceless. We definitely plan on getting together more, especially since we're only 680 miles apart. Plans are already in the works for a halfway meet up sometime this summer, I can't wait! A promise was made, we'll meet up at least once a year till one of us dies. To some that may sound strange, but Jay and I are serious. They say you can count your true friends on one hand, I'm honored that Jay is one of them and counts me among his.