Saturday, January 30, 2016

Rally Pins

I know that a few are missing and I'm still looking for them, hopefully I haven't tucked them away in too safe a place.  Up in the top right corner, the pie-shaped one is my oldest.  Dad, my brother and I joined a Dice Run put on by the Thunderbolts Motorcycle Club out of Plainview, Minnesota.  Dad and I on our 750 Honda touring bikes, my brother on his Norton Commando.  Bruno was the president and I remember him and that group very well, joining them for numerous rides.  More than one toy run, Poker Run, Dice Run, and then there was a huge convoy of riders that I joined, our destination the Wisconsin Dells.  State Patrol escort and the whole deal.

Curious, I easily found Bruno's Obituary online, his passing back in '95.  Mom and Dad joined Bruno and the Thunderbolt group on various Retreads rides.

My AMA pins up to year 7 are here in a row, the only other pins from my first generation of riding (pre-2004) are right in the center from our Aspencade visits in the late '70's.  Dad and I did it together, lots of fun and big adventure for the two of us.

All of the other pins are for the most recent years of rallies, the two I'm most proud of are my 1st and 5th year Wildcat Mountain Rally pins; I'm getting very close to another anniversary award and looking forward to it.

Sunday, January 24, 2016


 This fellow has them, at least he's got this one nailed down very well.......

Very Skilled

Dave shared this with us at Coffee yesterday morning.....go ahead, watch it more than once, we all have.  I can sometimes seem to make curved lines with a a straightedge, can't imagine how he can make properly curved lines freehand.  After the many lies and less serious fabrications around the big tables at Diamond's, some of us made our way downtown to Scooterville for Cabin Fever 2016.

A good crowd coming and going, anything for many of us to break winter's spell and dream of riding in the open, much warmer air.  Back a few years, I'd ridden a couple of times with the Minn-Max Twin Cities Scooter Club and many of their members drifted in and out while I was there.  The previous owner of my Morphous among them (he's still got his Scarabeo for sale).


 Jonathan mentioned the yellow Grom in the shop, so I had to poke my head in there to see that.


I had a pink one just like this Buddy.....and I do miss it......the whitewalls were a bit more demanding cleaning-wise than ol' Coop was comfortable with though.

Note the Corazzo sign..... items were all marked down and I hadn't paid much attention to anything on the racks for the first couple of hours that I was there.  Then and I have no idea why, the brown leather jackets caught my eye.  I so wanted to be Just Like David but it was not to be....nothing on the racks fit me.  I'm sure my checkbook was much happier that I walked out of the establishment with only the Hepco/Becker saddlebag units and w/o that very fine, so wonderfully soft and luxurious leather riding jacket too.  At this point, I'm STILL not in the Corazzo club and I was thaaat close.

Today's most exciting development has been the late afternoon turkey migration.  The birds have literally spent a good part of the day on a piece of the lawn that I plow to prevent snow drifting over the driveway.  It's essentially a grass parking lot and the birds, when they weren't picking the crab apples out of the tree, were out there foraging.

The first ones were quite orderly because they hadn't yet noticed me in the window.

Here are a couple of fliers, more in the middle of the pack, they decided the gate opening a bit too restrictive, flying over the fence instead.

 This last one is in flying form, ready to taxi, landing gear almost up.

This afternoon I see that we've got a single row of turkey tracks ......on the garage roof.

Friday, January 22, 2016

Like Clowns In A Volkswagen

Only moments before Peg managed to snap her shutter, most if not all of these goofy creatures (the wing-ged ones) were in the tree. 

Peg texted, "Like a Disney movie"

I received it today while with a customer, I shared it and his response was, "One shot and I'd have all my Limits."  Certainly another perspective.

What we wonder is.....well, we wonder a number of things.  Why don't their wings suffer in such tightly knit branch spaces??  How can our poor little crab tree's limbs support these tubbies??  When they spook, they don't fall out of the tree; they fly.  A Chickadee I'd understand, but how do these bowling balls with wings manage that??

More of life's curiosities......

Sunday, January 17, 2016

FIM Trials - Duluth, MN - 06/05/2005

We 3 drove up to spectate, a wet, cool day down here in southern MN and conditions were not that much different up on Lake Superior.  The Trials event was held at Spirit Mountain Ski Resort, the same place that Andy's Very Boring Rally is held.  This is a MN rally that I've not attended yet but will get another chance in 2018.

I have seen some of the indoor "trick" riding but I was astounded with what these talented riders were accomplishing on ground many of us would have been unable to stand on let alone ride over.  Mossy, wet rocks and mud.......challenging enough on the level.

 There were quite a few new and vintage, non-competitive bikes on the grounds being used as transport between sections by the spectators.

 Parking spots......

 We had to either walk between sections .....

or ride the chair lift.  As so often happens along Lake Superior, fog was present and thick in places.

 They were riding and able to use those upper gears in their transmissions.

This was the talented young Spanish woman.....with a vocabulary that put maritime laborers to shame once she was nailed with a couple of points here for dabbing.  It was probably OK, I doubt the judge on this one knew the language.

Saturday, January 16, 2016

Negative 1

Not a bad day to be the heated shop space.  Just came in from the garage, the moon is out big and bright, there's a fresh wind and the snow is crunchy underfoot.

Oldest daughter and I worked on her mobile Tack Trunk today, finishing just about the last bit of sawing.  Our next workday will finally involve some assembly, progress easier to document.  It was a few weeks ago that we were still able to work out next to the bikes in the non-climate controlled area but today, we moved into the heated workshop.  Yes, there's some sawdust but after we swept and Hoovered, the shop may very well be the cleanest it's been in months.

The Honda 400A has had a relatively rough life, suffering conditions far worse than it's less than 1K miles would indicate.  We'll see if we can't bring it back to some serviceable life and again, restoration, lower case "r" or upper case "r" not a consideration.  I want it to run and ride.

You'll note my recent sanction as a "Command Center".  Mike has put me on a map, not sure which one but I'm honored and will do my best to live up to expectations.  He's not shared the Secret Handshake yet but my assumption (and hope) is that I'll earn that tier of accomplishment over time, once I've actually proven myself.

Thanks for the faith Mike!

Saturday, January 9, 2016

Rally Plans For 2016

Well, we're in a new year, the days are getting longer and there's now another bike up on the lift.  That must mean it's time for rally, event and ride planning (actually this started weeks ago).  Reservations, registrations and tickets have been purchased.....already, so I guess I'm committed, right?  Two of these events involve motel stays, or at least they do for me so I'll take care of that before the month is out.  The remaining rallies will find me in my cozy tent each night.

These are the knowns and they'll happen like this......

May 1 - Slimey Crud Run,  Leland, Wisconsin

May 20 - 22  -  GR3,  Great River Road Rally, Soldiers Grove, Wisconsin, Madison BMW Club

June 3 - 5  -  Hiawatha BMW Rally, Money Creek Haven, Money Creek, MN - BMWMOCM

June 9 - 12  -  Rockerbox Motorfest featuring AHRMA Races, Road America, Elkhart Lake, WI

June 17 - 19 -  Minnesota Moto Guzzi Rally, Grand Marais, MN  MN Chapter of the MGNOC

July 8 - 10 - Iowa Moto Guzzi Rally, Elkader, IA   IA Chapter of the  MGNOC

Aug 5 - 7 - WMGR Rally, Lake Joy Campground, Belmont, WI  WI Moto Guzzi Riders

Sept 2 - 5 -  Wildcat Mtn Rally, Westby, WI  Good Folks

Oct 2 - Slimey Crud Run, Leland, Wisconsin

Hopefully there will be room in the schedule for another Lorem Ipsum gathering the 3rd Saturday in July and quite possibly a few other days strung together for another trip here and there.  With my 3 day weekends, attendance without using vacation days is convenient though I'm hoping to make at least a couple of these gatherings a day or so longer than is official.

Now that I've activated "Search This Blog" over on the right, info on any past visits at these rallies can be found.  They have all been visited numerous times in previous riding seasons. 

Friday, January 8, 2016

Not Always Cold And Clear

This weekend's outdoor NFL game is garnering quite the press....predictions are for cold and clear.  We aren't always like that up here though.  We've had a very mild though cloudy December, record setting on both accounts.

Last night our thermometer read +35, that's a temperature ABOVE freezing and it was snowing.  For some lucky reason, this time the atmosphere was colder than the ground surface temperature.  A few weeks ago it was the other way around and we're still battling some ice in places from that topsy turvy condition.

This morning we're living in a white lacy world.

Percival (Purs-Purs), always looking for company outside, soon was granted permission to ride on my shoulder while we photographed the magical valley.

As the cold invades this weekend, I won't be sitting in a stadium.  I'll get back to motorcycle maintenance, finish putting the new Helix battery in and get the new tire back in place.

Not sure what's next on the lift.....if none of them volunteer I'll have to make an executive decision.

Sunday, January 3, 2016

A wonderful Holiday week

Both Peg and I had the entire week off and celebrated by doing as little as possible, you should know that we excelled at it.  There was some entertaining hosted and celebratory time over Christmas weekend, mom's birthday was celebrated and New Year's eve just about as quiet as it's ever been.  A single beer, Durrell's My Family and Other Animals which has become tradition was as wild and crazy as it got for the last evening of 2015.

My goal has been to read, rest, nap, movie watch, get a bit of extracurricular work done, dabble at some motorcycle maintenance only when I was completely in the mood and spend very little time online.  It has gone mostly to plan and it has been glorious.  As Mike reminded me, staying home makes the time go slower and I did as much of that as I thought reasonable....not a bad place to be.  Tomorrow, back to the real.

Peg and Lauren have been busy solving Nancy Drew Mysteries, but the majority of Peg's time has been spent listening to audiobooks and knitting.  Scarves, blankets, socks and what I call wrist and ankle bands with Ben the recipient of an entire parliament of owl faces.

Fingerless wrist warmers.......

Featuring turtles, another one of Ben's favorite creatures.....

Socks that already have a big hole ......:)

Claudio has taken his sentinel duties very seriously these last few weeks and will sorely miss the responsibility very soon....

All the best to Everyone in 2016!!!

Friday, January 1, 2016

I-Cycle Derby - #68

It happened today, the 68th year in a row that Minneapolis motorcyclists went for a ride on New Year's Day.  Not all of us, just a very select few.  First time for me though ....and I didn't ride, only spectated, documented and cheer on those hardy enough to actually be on 2 (4 on 3?) wheels.

We had 12 degrees F when I left home and the car thermometer read 20 when I made it to Roy's Repair shop in Minneapolis.  Arriving just after 10 AM, the ride was to begin on the dot at 10:30.  Mike, Colleen and I had met earlier for breakfast and then met on the south side to help see everyone off on their ride.

A local station's satellite truck......

 I parked a couple of blocks away as did these other participants......these folks actually hauled their machines to ride.   Bumper racks, trailers......

An interview to broadcast history and the "why".....


The start was enduro-style, timed and staggered.



 Naturally there was a rugged V twin Ascot and rider there......


The Grom performed the only wheelie that was personally witnessed.......

Thanks Mike

 As always, young and old(er).....