Shootin' the Breeze

by "Bummer"

bummer @ abate

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May 2014

        Which came first?

    I’m sure many of you have sobered up to “steak and eggs” after an evening out on the town at an all-night truck stop. Fishermen on camping trips often have a hearty breakfast of “trout and eggs” over a campfire. And of course there’s the usual pork - “bacon, sausage, or ham and eggs” on many morning menus. But have you noticed that you NEVER hear of ANYONE having chicken and eggs for breakfast?

    I’ve often thought about this over my many years, usually when I crack open an egg in the morning and I have some left-over chicken in the fridge. And each time I do, I realize that for some reason I can’t quite put my finger on, it would just be too weird. And a chicken omelet would be plain sick! Well, I once included this into a file that I keep on my computer titled “Partial Thoughts” as inspirational suggestions for the future.

    Along with the “chicken and eggs for breakfast” question, there are many other loose snippets of information, thoughts, quotes, comments, and ideas that I sometimes call upon when I don’t know what the hell to write about. I dove into them a few months ago and combined some of them into the bulk of a column for which I received some tremendously appreciated feedback. So I decided to once again raid that file and see if you might like to read a few more that I had left over from that first conglomeration. Those attributed to others are theirs, and those that are not might be mine. But who knows what truly is or isn’t ours since we may have heard it somewhere and later just thought we came up with it originally. They say everything has been said or done before. Anyway, here they are.....

  • “AEIOU and sometimes Y? What’s up with that? Can’t “Y” make a commitment? I bet “Y” would never get a tattoo!”
  • “What is the sense of having your cake if ya can’t eat it too?” – Since I was a kid I’ve wondered about this....along with “Don’t be smart!”
  • “We’re expected to make mistakes. That’s why they put erasers on pencils.” – Anonymous. (I’d like to add that now they’re called “delete” keys.)
  • “Sometimes words just run away and hide....and I have a hard time finding them.” - Amazing vocalist Linda Ronstadt sadly referring to a symptom of her Parkinson’s disease and why she doesn’t perform much these days.
  • “I was worrying about my hot-tub not working, and then I realized that no matter what...the sun will come up tomorrow. And if it doesn’t, that hot-tub would be the least of my problems.” - I’ve found this puts things in perspective and can apply to anything.
  • “Every time I think I have nothing to lose, I find that I was wrong.”
  • “He turned to the bottle and stayed there.” - Reference to a possible character in a story.
  • “Ron MacDonald” – Possible name for a bad-ass biker character LOL.
  • “It sucks when you wake to find your nightmare is your reality. IE: You really DID get busted last night, and you really ARE in jail!”
  • “Nomadic tribe of bikers/apocalyptic gypsies” – Possible story line
  • “She had the beauty, wisdom, courage, grace, and inner strength of a goddess” – A character I’d like to know intimately.
  • “I took one look at her and all I saw was trouble.” – A few characters I HAVE known intimately LOL.
  • “The beautiful thing about learning is that nobody can take it away from you.” - B.B. King.
  • “When you come to the Pearly Gates, all you get to keep is what you gave away.” - Anonymous
  • “Some of the best times I’ve had were with absolute strangers.”
  • “I must be going: My work here is finished.” – Closing words for a column.
  • “It isn’t the guitar. It’s the guitar player.” – My father.
  • “It was a dark and stormy night and the rain fell in torrents, etc.” from Edward Bulwer-Lytton beginning his novel “Paul Clifford”. This first sentence of the novel goes on and on. Literature professors teach that it is the cheesiest and most amateur example of prose. I happen to like it! Snoopy must have liked it too, because he used this opening often as he typed out novels on the roof of his doghouse. In honor of both Snoopy and Lytton I usually begin my October Halloween stories with those words.
  • – Promoting women’s rights with “Go Topless Day” (usually held in August). Even male-chauvinistic pigs endorse this. LOL!
  • “If I had it to do all over again, I’d just make different mistakes than I did the first time and might not have as much fun.”
  • “I’ve always loved stories. And history is just that... stories full of people not much different than you and I, and the things they’ve done. And those stories are just waiting for us to find, to learn from, and be entertained by.” There are many more “Partial thoughts” still in there. And that file seems to be a living, growing thing, full of the heavy and sometimes asinine things that I’ve thought or took notice of. I still might end up using some of these ones in a column or two. In fact that “nomadic tribe of bikers” thing has intrigued me for years and might even end up in a book. Regarding that; I’ve often thought about those wandering bad-guys in the “Mad Max/Road Warrior” movies and their crazy machines. Talk about party animals! But my bikers would be a bit more righteous.

        Moving on to “now” (although I’m writing this in March), I had the bike out the other day for the first time in over seven months. And man, have I missed her! I always end up yelling, “OH YEAH!” out loud on that first ride of the year.

        Of course in the old days bikes weren’t as technically advanced, and because of this, they weren’t as easy to just climb on and go after a long, cold winter: Batteries couldn’t be kept on the bike and tended automatically while she slept because “Tenders” hadn’t been invented yet. And without “moving” electrical current, batteries might freeze and crack. You’d need to take them off the bike and keep them someplace warm with a one-amp “trickle” charger on ‘em that couldn’t turn on and off automatically. And the old carburetors sometimes were found to be “gummed-up” and had to be taken apart and cleaned. Points would often have to be filed and re-adjusted. Sometimes the push-rods needed to be adjusted too even if you didn’t use “solids” (which need to be adjusted often). You might have chosen to add some kind of gas treatment so she could sit all winter without water condensing on the inside of the tank and ruining your fuel. And sometimes ya even had to spray ether into your intake just to start the bike. Usually I’d wear out my right leg from all that kicking each spring. In short: Often that first start-up was a hassle that you had to plan on using-up a whole afternoon for. My traditional day for that was April 1st - April Fool’s day....a goal I tried to keep each year.

        But nowadays, it’s all entirely different. Usually, I just check the oil, the tires’ pressure, the tires’ tread, disconnect the battery-tender, turn on the key, hit the button and go! Of course oil-changing and over-all inspections and adjustments are always good preliminaries. But these days that doesn’t necessarily have to be anything lengthy prior to that very “first ride” of the season.

        Just remember: Whether you’re on the front OR the back of the seat, the prime directive in motorcycling should always be safety, unless your life is so pitiful that you don’t give a damn about tomorrow. So for you ladies out there who sit on the back, this is the ONE time that nagging your old man about something (like checking out the readiness/safety of the scoot) is entirely understandable and very much your business.

        As some of you might remember, both of my sons live in warm states. Ben is now in Texas and Jason is still in Louisiana. And both of them separately often tease me in the middle of winter by telling me, “Dad, I was out on the scoot yesterday morning. The temperature was about 65 degrees and sunny.” For those few minutes I consider moving south. Then I come to my senses and remember how much I love Ohio. In fact, by the time you’re reading this, glorious May will be here! May has always been my favorite month of the year, particularly in Ohio.

        May also begins bike events. Throughout the season, if you have any desire to support this organization....runs, rallies, benefits, cook-outs, and parties along WITH legislation are our specialties. And we’ve been putting on bike events to raise money for those legislative efforts for a long, long time.

        We’re fellow bikers. We are YOU! We are NOT just some bar, shop, or group putting on an event for a “cause”, or trying to make some quick bucks from the motorcycling community. We ARE, in fact, a “cause”. Most of the funding for ABATE comes from staging these events. So remember THAT next time you’re deciding what to do on a beautiful day.

        Every weekend during the summer there’s some kind of an ABATE event going on within 100 miles of you, if not in your region, then in another. And if it IS out of your immediate area, what better destination for a ride than to an ABATE event where you’ll be treated like a welcomed guest? (And make sure you wear an ABATE shirt or patch to let them know!) Look for our events (and for the events calendar) in this magazine and on our state and regional websites.

        Well, I must be going: My work here is finished,

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