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Bummer's Monthly Musings

Bummer, who's an ABATE institution, writes one of the most widely read articles in the Outspokin' each month. Now he's also right here on the web! Welcome to the Computer Age, Bummer! ~ Enjoy!

 

 

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Shootin’ the Breeze 

 January 2004

by Bummer

Email: bummer@abate.com

 

HAPPY NEW YEAR!!! Well, we made it thru another one huh? Like most of ya, that means I’ll be writin’ the wrong dates on my checks for a while. I worked the ABATE booth at a local swap meet the other day and saw a bunch of people I haven’t seen for a while. One was a fella named Skunk who rode a sweet old knucklehead chop with a girder front end. He built that bike a long time ago and I still remember the nights in his garage as he wrenched on ‘er. One night we took a break and headed down to the Bottle and Cork [the local watering hole]. Now, Skunk is a pretty big dude, but he’s mellow as hell. The bar was really crowded and there were a lot of strangers there that night. As sometimes happens the smallest, meanest lil’ asshole with a chip on his shoulder decided he was gonna proove himself by pickin’ on the baddest lookin’ dude in the bar, which just happened to be Skunk. After ignoring this jerk for a long time finally Skunk had enough when the weasel nudged up beside him and spilled his drink. Skunk just looked down at him in disgust and said, “You owe me a drink man.” “Hey buddy, YOU spilled it. YOU replace it. I was just tryin’ to get served.” “Listen man, I don’t want no trouble. Ya spilled my drink. Buy another and it’s forgotten.” The guy acted like he was reachin’ for his wallet and sucker punched Skunk in the gut. Thing is, Skunk was ready for him and the lil’ guy’s fist just bounced off! [Did I mention Skunk was an apprentice bricklayer? He toted brick and cement block for a livin’!] Without missing a beat Skunk bonked the guy on top of the head like he was hammerin’ a nail. The guy fell to the floor as Skunk turned and asked the barkeep for another drink. Then he turns to me and asks, “Now what were we talkin’ ’bout Bum?”

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Bummer's Shootin' the Breeze Page!
 

After a few months I moved away from Skunk and we rarely see each other now, but we remain good friends. One of the things that make lasting friendships is experiences shared, and we shared quite a few. Usually this requires knowing someone for a long time, but not always. I’ve met people in ABATE that I’ve only known a short time and see rarely, yet I consider them good friends. Probably because we share so much in common. I plan on seein’ a few of these people at the seminar coming up the weekend of Feb. 7th. If ya never been to one and yer interested in goin’, take my word for it: It’s a great time and very worth the effort. Hell, it’s worth it just to see the expressions on the staff and other customers when a classy hotel is taken over by bikers for the weekend! There’s even an indoor ceement pond! Gettin’ back to the swap meet, as we stood lookin’ at some old timer’s parts I noticed Skunk handling a thru the tank fuel valve that would only fit a knuckle, a flathead or an early pan. “Still got ’er huh?” “Oh yeah. Been restoring her for the past few years. Had a hard time findin’ parts, but just about got it all done now. Had a hell of a time with that frame, but I de-raked it.” I kinda wish he would have left it as a chopper, but didn’t say anything. Before we parted I mentioned that night at the Bottle and Cork and he just smiled. “Ever find out who that lil’ guy was?” “He ended up becoming an assistant district attorney!” Now the lil’ sucker can pick on everybody.

Hope to see ya at the seminar,

         That's me, dammit!~Watch here for next month's installment!

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“I forget. Think we oughta move? This guy might be dead.” “Ya think?” Then he prodded him with his boot. When he STILL didn’t move Skunk looked at me and we finished our drinks REAL quick. As casually as possible we headed for the door, but by the time we got there we heard someone scream, “HE’S GOT A GUN!!” and dove out just as Mighty Mouse fired off a few rounds. Now, at this point I’d like to take a moment to mention to those of you who have never been in the situation, that being shot at brings you closer to God. Havin’ a gun pointed at ya wakes ya up, but bein’ shot at makes ya feel awful sorry for a lot of things ya done, and sorrier for things ya didn’t do. Actually BEIN’ shot is something all together different, but I don’t wanna go into that here and now. Skunk’s old pickup was clear across the big parking lot and as we scrambled to our feet it seemed even further. We hadn’t even taken a few running steps when the fella ran out the door behind us and raised his gun, but before we got any further we heard a loud “Click”. I kept on runnin’, but Skunk stopped, turned around and started yellin’, “ONLY A DAMNED SISSY USES A GUN IN A BARFIGHT!!!” and proceeded to disarm the lil’ fella with a few slaps to go with it. The only thing I wanted to do was get the hell outta there, so I yelled to Skunk and we finally left. Now Skunk, [not his real name] pulled out the gun as we drove away, looked at it and said, “Looks like I got a new gun anyway.” Don’t know what became of it and don’t wanna know. All I know is he kinda earned it I guess. Although lotsa people in the bar knew us, we never heard any more about it. We headed back to his garage, had more than a few drinks and sat there talkin’ way into the night. Gettin’ shot at does that to ya too. It makes ya wanna talk.

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