Jun 1, 2014

Love is fickle.



See how wonderful my new sprocket and chain look?  Not even a mile on them.  My trusty buddy, Runkle, had his 12 k tuneup in August 2013.  It was expensive.  Then I heard I needed a new sprocket and chain, which was another $300.  Imagine my dismay.  I spent about $800 that month just to get Runkle serviced and up to par.  Crazy time. Especially considering I'd done regular services, kept the chain oiled, and basically babied the little runt.  It made me so mad I parked the runt, hooked it up the the battery charger and covered it so I wouldn't have to even look at the thing.  I'm whacked like that.  For months I've been riding in the fields by my house on the Polaris, ignoring Runkle other than the occasional lifting of the cover to see if there are families of mice enjoying the comfort of my beautiful but ignored Runkle.  

Yesterday I pulled the cover off Runkle and found a few mouse turds and some dead flies.  It wasn't a pretty sight.  I dug out my motorcycle pants and realized that in the months I'd been ignoring Runkle I'd also been ignoring any hint of exercise.  My pants wouldn't button.  My shiny BMW jacket barely zipped, thanks to Pepsi, brownies, and too many margaritas.  The one bright spot is that my BMW socks fit perfectly.  Things were looking up.   

I tossed what gear would fit onto my plump form and jumped on the bike to ride around the block.  I didn't even bother putting my side bags on.  I just rode.  About a mile away I thought I should be a little more concerned about ensuring the bike was ride-ready and safe.  I headed back to my house and checked the tire pressure and did a fast check to make sure no wires were eaten by the mice who thrive in my shop.  Everything appeared fine so I hopped back on the Runkle runt and waved goodbye to Trout.  

We rode about  hundred miles past fields of wheat, strawberries, cows and farmland.  Along the way we became reacquainted and dare I say, we even fell in love again.  It wasn't long before I decided Runkle's been a good pal but love is fickle.  Love is fleeting and love is often filled with betrayal.  

It was on this glorious first ride of the season that I realized I love riding but I'm craving something more.  Something new, peppy, and fully of spunk.   I'm thinking I need a 2015 800GS.  But, I'm also thinking Runkle reserves one last summer.  Besides, I spent so much on service, I deserve to ride it like I stole it.  

Stay tuned for Runkle's summer adventures.  Ride on.  


May 16, 2014

Not a Badge Bunny....at the NAMOA Conference

So today I find myself not working...well, not getting paid.  I'm manning the Chris Kilcullen Memorial Ride booth a the North American Motor Officers Association Conference in Wilsonville, OR.  I've never experienced one of these events but I ould highly recommend attending!  There are various vendors and it's a Badge Bunny's dream come true.  I'm not a Badge Bunny, so really, I'm a little put off by all the badges and hunky men.  I mean how much stength do I have??   It's a shame each and every one of these guys is  a police officer.  I mean, there's nothing wrong with that at all...but I keep reminding myself:  Not a Badge Bunny...oh look at that one....wait...not a Badge Bunny...HOLYCRAP!  Look at THAT!  He's on a BMW.  He's...wait...wait...not a Badge Bunny.

So, this is what you are missing...over 100 motorcycle officers from the Pacific Northwest and a few from Canada.  The officers are competing in a few different areas.  One is "follow the leader" which sounds just like the title.  Follow the moto and try not to hit a cone, put your foot down, etc.  The other thing, which I've become totally facinated by, is a little game of "let's hook two bikes together and see how well two moto officers can run an obstical course.  It's totally neat.  There's also some free riding areas and courses where the officers can just run the course and improve their skills.

Here's a video of some motors guys from Vancouver showing their stuff....


There are so many bikes here it will blow your mind.  Motorcycle police bikes in all shapes and sizes..and so many different departments from Oregon, Washington, Canada and apparently Idaho.  I've seen some Bend, Portland, Multnomah & Clackamas County,  Bellevue (WA) to name a few.


There are also some vendors here on site, though the major vendors are going to be back in Lake Oswego later tonight...where I hear there may be some free drinks (didn't have to tell me twice, I will be there!)   One of my favorite things here is the Polaris Sportsman WV850.  Check out the tires on this baby.  Serious stuff.  And, since with my Polaris I've been putting air in the tire almost weekly...I've got a serious case of the "I wants." There is a Moto Guzzi vendor here sporting an awesome looking retro bike that I'd be more than happy to take for a spin.  (Don't tell my BMW).  

If you are in the area of Wilsonville, OR tomorrow, that's the day of the big serious competition.  It's open to the public so you should come on out and enjoy the show.  It's a like a bee hive...all this stuff is really awesome.  

Not a Badge Bunny,

Jess



May 9, 2014

Oh the mistakes I've made...

I've finally got a break from that awesome job I recently took in order to have more free time.  I've been working 15-20 hours extra a week...wait a minute...there's a problem.  That was NOT the plan.  So I feel inclined to give you all some free and mostly worthless advice.  Are you paying attention?  Here goes:

When you realize you may have made a mistake, go ahead and un-make the mistake if possible.

Pride is the one thing that is NOT going to keep me off my bike this summer!  This new gig is either feast or famine.  Working like a dog is awesome because it keeps you in the greenbacks...but this motorcycle riding blogger would rather be kept on the roads or trails, crashing through life one funny motorcycle story at a time.  So I'm re-evaluating again.  Yep.  Silly me.  It will all work out and if not, I have a fall back plan.  Anyone have enough money to support me and my dog?  I don't do laundry but I can cook a killer rack of ribs.  You wouldn't even have to meet me.  Just send cash.  (Wow, I just wrote the best singles ad ever!  I'll have to make sure the men aren't lining up on my doorstep!)

The good news is I've got some time to kill this next week.  I was going to take the cover off Runkle and ride like the wind...but this is what Oregon is currently greeting me with:

Anyone wanna ride in the storm?  Not me.  
I'm all about riding in any weather but I do not want my maiden voyage in months to include a downpour that will require me to wear a life jacket.   The sun is trying...pushing and pulling...and failing miserably.  Pretty soon I'll have to just risk it.  I won't melt.  I may drown, but I won't melt.

Cheers to the two people reading my blog.  Love ya, Mom and Dad!  




Mar 17, 2014

Where to begin....

So I'm alive!  I quit my job and just started a new one today...which is why I find myself in a crappy hotel in Sacramento.  After a full day of going over policies and procedures, I'm ready to hit the road back to Oregon.  But alas, it's not meant to be.  I'm here for the week.  And, turns out the guy making the hotel reservations (as cool as he may otherwise be) is a cheapskate.  First, nothing is nearby except the office which is a bit of a walk.  Wait, maybe I should start with, FIRST, the company car I'm supposed to be using is being used by someone else.  So, I'm on foot.  The nearest place to eat is around the corner, over the overpass, down the street and through the woods to Grandma's house. Second, the room has two beds...which is a good thing since I pulled the fancy cover back (famous for being infected will all kinds of crap) only to find a blanket beneath that looks like it hasn't been washed for years.  I'm talking HAIR and all kind of stuff.  I actually grabbed one thing with a piece of toilet paper to see if it was squishable.  The other really cool thing is there's a wet spot on the floor.  I can't tell what it is, and don't think I'm going to lean down and sniff that stuff.  Let's just say as I was walking down the breezeway I took a second to look behind me and make sure there wasn't a bloody print from my shoe.  It's THAT kind of place.

Beyond that, I've checked for bed bugs, hidden cameras and bodies under the bed.  All clear.  Well, except that my skin is itching and there's a good chance I may go into shock from all the dust.  Did I mention I'm allergic to dust mites?  Yeah.  Awesome.  Good call on quitting the solid 40 hour a week job with excellent benefits so I could go private.  I'm sure it will all work out.  I mean, after all, how much worse can it get?

So, I'm in this new job because in part, it will give me freedom to take multiple weeks off if I so choose so I can ride my moto!  So excited for that part.  It's a good thing.  I would love to stay and chat about where I'm going to ride but I need to get a black light and some rubber gloves.  

Cheers for now.




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