My grandson lives 800 miles from me, so needless to say when we're able to be together, we want to make the most of it. Reid is 5 years old and all boy. He's crazy about Zombies, Motorcycling and me. His love of dirt bikes comes from a very short exposure that up until recently, had been limited to setting on some of my old trials bikes in the garage, or watching me ride around the yard...from a safe distance. This past summer that changed when I spotted him holding one of my old helmets, down out of sight, as he watched me ride around in circles from his position in a doorway. That action said to me, "I'm ready to feel that for myself!" Short story is that I carefully coaxed him onto the spot between me and the handlebars, we made a few slow rounds, then faster a little faster and just like that, he was in love.
When he got back home in Tampa, he obsessed over the experience. He talked of nothing else; spending hours watching motocross videos and drawing pictures of me and him racing around some imaginary course, each on a brightly colored bike of our own.
I could not not stand it. Here's a LINK to a little video of the moment that both of our lives changed in an instant, when he came for a visit a couple of weeks ago and dragged me (as usual) out to the shop to sit on the machines housed there.
Later that same day... LINK
Sunday, June 11, 2017
Thursday, November 08, 2012
Tuesday, October 30, 2012
It’s been about 30 years ago that I first attempted to master the game of Golf. I’d bought a gigantic red leather bag full of odd clubs and talked my old buddy Cornbread into giving it a try with me. Cornbread was my regular riding buddy and that was a great (albeit weird) time in our lives when we were all about riding our Harleys. I rode mine everywhere I went. It was a early shovelhead engine in a slick little 57 model straight-leg frame. It had a dual-disc lowrider frontend, with no rake or stretch. What they might call a “Bobber” today. It was little, bitty for a Harley and you couldn’t haul anything on it but yourself. So I did what anybody else would do; I bought a second one. It was a big, ex-police, Full Dressed Harley that you could pile the stuff on and travel. I figured it was perfect for hauling two sets of golf clubs and it almost was.
This huge black and white monster had two sets of floor boards and I discovered that you could plop the bags on the rear boards, strap ‘em up the sides and tie the whole thing at the top to the back rest. Going down the road, you never knew they were there. Flawless.
So it was that on the first try we loaded up and set our sights on Paris Landing State Park. We arrived without incident, unloaded and parked off to the side of the parking lot on the hill over the clubhouse. We’d had a great time to this point, but alas, the fickle finger of the golfing gods intervened (just as they always do). We played poorly, quickly hooking and slicing away the two dozen balls that we’d bought (thinking they’d probably last us a couple of years). We spent the next several hours tromping through the woods looking for balls with which to extend our day, while blue-haired old ladies glared at us as they played through.
We struggled on with this pattern through 9 holes, when I didn’t think I could stand any more of those Spalding Easter-egg hunts. On the ninth hole, as we approached the Clubhouse for the turn to 10, Cornbread sliced one off high and hard into no-man’s land lying in between the two fairways. He was gone for a while and I should have gone in to help, but my spirit was pretty well broken by then and I was hoping he’d emerge without a ball so we’d have to leave. When he came staggering out of the woods 20 minutes later, he had his shirt folded up like your Grandmother carrying potatoes from the garden. “I found the mother-load”, he declared as he dumped the shirt full of Red-striped balls into the top of his golf bag. That did it for me and I told him that if he expected me to cart his bag back home, he’d follow me back to the motorcycles, post haste.
It was as I attempted to load the bags onto the bike that things really turned sour. Rushing through the procedure, I must have flung the big red bag with a little too much gusto because it struck the starter relay (poorly located on the frame, over the footboard) hard enough to bend the metal cover into the electrical contacts within. The result was the starter engaging, IN GEAR and without a rider. WOMP, WHOP, WHOP went the starter while propelling the 600lb scooter along on two wheels and the big crash bar like a tricycle. Meanwhile I’m trying foolishly to dislodge the bag, while Cornbread was hanging onto the sissy-bar as we were all dragged across the parking lot. We went a good 30 feet before the front tire connected with an ancient yellow Datsun Bluebird Sedan, right about its front passenger side fender.
That old Harley must have slammed that fender a half dozen times before I managed to beat the cover off that relay, with what I believe to have been a 6 iron. I swear that even the relay cover was slicing hard to the right as it careened across the parking lot…….Anyway, as Cornbread and I struggled to get our breathing under control, we silently agreed (with a mere exchange of looks) to get the heck out of Dodge.
We took the back roads out of there and eventually stopped to regroup. I felt kind of bad about the damage to the Datsun, but heck, it had plenty of other dents to match the one I’d just left, although none of the others were marred black with Avon Speedmaster rubber. I was leaning there considering all this when I heard Cornbread hit that first red and white range ball into the Springville Bottoms cornfield that we’d stopped beside. It was the best golf we’d played all day. FOUR!!!!
Monday, October 17, 2011
Wednesday, September 28, 2011
Here's a photo that came from the Trials Event at Fearless Charlie Nash's place a couple weeks ago. On Friday me and Charlie took turns (he took a few more than I did) running along behind his Grandson Jesse as he booked it around the farm on his new Electric motorcycle. He needed a little help keeping it upright, but he was doing his best to master the thing. It wouldn't take long; by the next day he was flying solo, even picking himself up on the few occasions he landed on his ear. My hat's off to the little guy, as well as to his old grandpap for putting little Jesse on a path that'll become one of the greatest parts of his life. Love you Charlie
Sunday, June 12, 2011
Thirty-five years ago at about 4:30 in the afternoon, I went down to the little league ball park to coach a group of 10 year olds in a mid-season baseball game. It wasn’t my first and it sure wasn’t my last, but it was a little unusual due to the fact that I’d gotten married earlier in the day. Yes Tammy and I had just enough time to leave the church, go home and change clothes, before heading out to the game. It wasn’t a great honeymoon and certainly a lot less than she deserved, but she was a good sport about it. Like a lot of young couples we didn’t have a lot of money, so a trip to Hawaii wasn’t in the cards anyway. Through the years, we’ve done a lot of things like that and while it doesn’t sound real romantic, it did make for a great story.
I’ve got a pile of great stories; that’s one of the many benefits of having so many years with one special person. Happy anniversary honey and thanks for staying in the game with me so long. You’re the All-Star on our team.
My little girl has been out of the country for a year now, but in two weeks she's coming home. She’s and her husband are actually moving to Nashville and while that’s not all the way to Humphreys County, it’s closer than I ever thought she’d get. The photo is their new place in West Nashville and it may not be the Belle Meade Mansion, but it’s a pretty sure bet that all her neighbors will be talking English. Auf Wiedersehen Deutschland, your loss is our gain..