Since I first started riding, I always dreamed about owning a Harley. I bought Jap bikes that looked as close to a Harley cruiser as I could, took shit from Harley riders who knew I was a wanna-be but couldn’t afford one, to eventually shelling out the money to buy one. I’ve owned a few, put a lot of miles on them and basked in the history and glory of having an 850 pound American motorcycle underneath me. I was proud. Hell, I still own a Harley.
I always try to sum up what I like about something, and as far as Harley is concerned, I love the history. I loved that the gas Tank hadn’t changed since 1936. I loved that the bat-wing faring and saddle bag looks had been around since the 60s. At first glance, the bike I owned looked almost exactly like the bike my father, grandfather, and great grandfather would have owned. Honda’s and Kawasaki always seemed to have their finger in the wind, and constantly changed the look of their bikes. Not Harley. It seemed like an anchor of style in the rapidly changing motorcycle world. I loved the sense of tradition and style
They made small changes at first, that I liked: The ABS brakes — I guess thats cool, if you don’t know how to fucking use your front brake. Ok, I could get that one. Redesigning the frame: good call. Anyone who’s experienced bagger wobble at high speeds knows….
Then some douche bag in a board room started fucking with the look, and the other douche bags all voted that they agreed.
- A 6 gallon gas tank: more distance, yet you ruined the look of a bike that had beautiful lines (and history) to it.
- Cut the fender on the baggers, getting rid of that classic, traditional look that has been around for so many years.
- Rounded out the saddle bags. They look terrible now.
- Put a wind vent on the bat wing, to cut down buffering. Heh, buffeting. I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again. If you’re concerned with buffeting, then don’t ride a motorcycle. Fuck, its WHY you ride a motorcycle.
- I’m wondering when they’ll put reverse and air conditioning on them.
Lets face it, Harley doesn’t make the best bike out there. You’re buying history and tradition. If I wanted a more comfortable, efficient, fast and long-lasting bike I’d buy anything but a Harley. I buy them for style, and the fact that they’re made in America.
I picked up a cycle world this weekend at the airport. Harley went and made a new engine, and its fucking liquid cooled.
This may seem super picky and old fashioned of me, but the things I’ve loved about Harley don’t seem to be the things the MOCO loves anymore. They just made Harley and the Davidsons, which I guess is supposed to make me appreciate their tradition, but it didn’t work, at least for me. Plus, Harley and the Davidson’s was basically a bit full of shit. That’s not exactly how it happened…
They’re looking at a different demographic now. Harley put their finger to the wind.
On the contrast, I love how Indian has made a bigger engine, better bike and doing as much as they can to go back to their history, while Harley is looking to depart from it. Plus, its a better AMERICAN bike. I’m pretty much sold.
The fact that I can’t buy a dealer t-shirt that’s made in china for less than $40-60 bucks, or get a valve stem fixed on a tire than that I removed for less than $120 from Harley says a thing. I’m not their demographic. The MOCO has become bloated and out of touch, at least with me. They’re losing market share, and they don’t know what the fuck to do about it.
You can argue that it’s not the same history or blood lines as the original Indian, but I can argue that Harley was owned for 12 years by a company who’s focus was making tennis and bowling balls.
I think I’ll try Indian for a while.
Whew! I said it.
But then again, I’m an opinionated dick 🙂
This Friday. I’ve never been there: The grand Ol’ Opry, the Johnny Cash Museum, and a store from one of my favorite shows – American Pickers. I’m fairly pumped up about it. I’m going there for work, but the nights are mine, if they need be. A lot of history there, and I’m 3/4ths geeked up to see it. I’ll take some pictures.
Nobody wanted this trip: I did. I don’t necessarily like country music, but Nashville is a place where an American form of music started. Maybe this punk rock/Classic rock biker can learn a thing. I can’t wait to get a feeling for for the town.
Great and catchy song: The girl getting married in the video is Carlene Carter, daughter of June Carter Cash. Turns out Rock and Roll came out of Country music, if you go back to the roots.
As far as modern culture, I’ve always been a little late to the party. I barely care, and it’s always interesting to see what trends last. I think 90% of it is pure shit, but a few of it seems to stick after a while…
I think I dig this song:
I gotta think I could twist a throttle to this and enjoy the hell out of it somewhere on a ride, somewhere. It’s fairly jammin. I think the voices in my head on a long ride end up saying these things anyway. It’s why I dig riding on long rides: it brings you back to center.
Currant Nevada. I’d been here before, and posted about it: http://www.mrzip66.com/2008/07/29/currant-nevada/
I shot this earlier in the year. Currant is a ghost town that has haunted me over the years, always wondering what this place was all about. It’s out in the middle of effing nowhere, Nevada. From what I’ve found, it was one of 2 towns that were ever evacuated from nuclear testing from area 51 in the 60s. There’s always ghosts in a ghost town, and I always love to know the stories. From this place, I haven’t found any.
I posted this video on my youtube channel, and I got this yesterday:
the currant video.. I love it. I grew up there is went to school in ely… drove every day. so may good memories when my dad had it all the gangsters from Las Vegas used to come up there and hide my dad threw parties there that would last for weeks at a time and just before he died Jimmy Durante came up there and was the bartender for a few weeks I remember him so well now look at it the shell of what it was there used to be trailers there some of the hookers from the Mustang Ranch used to come there and work and staying the trailers my dad had because of all the Oil Workers my first horse there was a Mustang they caught right off the desert floor
Jimmy Durante tended bar here. Thats more than I knew last year. Pretty cool. I hit the guy up to tell me more stories, if he will…
If anyone can tell a story about this place, please email firstname.lastname@example.org
Along this fools Errand…
God, I love the Decendents. I followed them as a young, 18 year old punk rock kid and they throw out albums every few years that reflect where I’m at at life, and they seem to make sense. They’re my same age, and I gotta admit I dig their songs and lyrics. I don’t know why.
Life is fucking good.
I’ve always dug this song. Mostly, for the energy of it all. Reminds me of Jr. High….
If I could fix one single problem in my life, its this:
No, I don’t want to fix your computer.
Yes, I can. No, I don’t want to. Your 2003 Acer laptop isn’t a good time. Lets not even bring it up in a conversation. Just….Buy a new one. Don’t ask me. I can’t polish a turd.
I’m also killer at cleaning toilets. I don’t want to do that either for you.
There, I said it.
Taking the family to Disneyland tomorrow. 1 day at the beach, 2 days at disneyland, and 1 day at six flags. We’re all fairly hopped up about it.