I type this from my home computer having swapped one cold state for another. It seems the temperatures were nearly identical between California and Florida. Maybe I was just glad to be home but although it seemed the same on thermometer, it felt warmer here in Fort Lauderdale to the point I drove home from the airport with the top down.
Okay, so the heater was going. I'll admit I can be a wimp with the cold.
Baby showers and motorcycles.
As I mentioned in my previous blog, the girlfriend and I were in Oxnard to attend one her very close friends baby shower. Everyone knew everyone, except for yours truly of course and I was surprised when called to compete in a baby food eating contest.
It was orange, mushy and cold. I'd rather not talk about it anymore than that. Ever again. Never.
The ladies at my table thought I'd won the thing, but the brother of the father-to-be and a close friend (naturally) were declared tied winners.
I'd say that the whole thing smelled of a fix, but at that moment in time I couldn't smell anything but smashed orange stuff. Carrots maybe.
You see, I'm talking about it again. This could seriously scar me.
The shower was held in a private club located on a marina.
I'm not sure how many male readers of the blog have attended baby showers, but it is an interesting thing to behold. It seems to me that all of the activities are geared towards scaring you away from having children. My theory would be airtight except that most the women attending, at my table anyway, had at least two children already. Maybe its to flaunt whats in store for the new parents at this point in time when they're pretty much commited to having the new addition.
This babyshower included identifying baby food without tasting, smelling or being able to read the label. Do we really ask children to eat this stuff? Even behind clean shiny glass it looked appealing as poop. Speaking of which, that was the second contest!
A tray of opened diapers that had candy bars melted in the perfect spot to replicate a baby's best efforts was taken from table to table and you had to guess which candy bar it was by looking at it. This was done just before lunch with the mystery chocolate looking very convincing. You can't even imagine how tempted I was to wait until all eyes were on me and start eating the candy bar out of the diaper, but I was on best behavior to give a lasting impression that was more charming than fear factor.
You may remember the expected highlights of the shower was seeing the gf's friends new motorcycle and watching the playoffs in the bar with the other male attendee's.
The motorcycle wasn't bought and consequently never brought. We watched the football game on an old bigscreen TV that liked to flick on and off during the most exciting moments of play. This along with the coffee we were drinking made it one of the more unusual playoff experiences. Conversation was good though.
The friend (who was supposed to bring a new R6) and the girlfriend.
Wheres the motorcycle lady!
Today, on the way to airport we saw at least six motorcycles, four harleys and two sportbikes with the most unusual sight being the full faced helmets worn by two of the cruisers.
Not quite under the radar
Being at home, using my own computer and getting to read the latest motorcycle news didn't give me the warmest feeling I'd hope for though. The new EPA laws is starting to hit the more mainstream press with the Daytona Beach News covering the story thats guaranteed to grow with controversy.
Reported by several motorcycle magazines, the Tighter Clean Air Act emission standards, which is based on California's law similar law, went into effect on Jan. 1 for motorcycles manufactured in 2006 and beyond. Modifying exhaust systems or anything that would affect the motorcycle performance can bring fines up to $10,000. It also limits owners to one customized road machine in a lifetime that doesn't meet air quality standards. That bike cannot be sold for five years.
Many chopper and custom motorcycle shops are fearing the worse with sales already seemingly affected.
"If the law's enforced as it's written, we will be devastated. We do a lot of kit bikes," said Brigit Duncan, owner of Custom Works in Daytona Beach. "We've lost about 80 percent of those sales since we started letting people know about the law three months ago. But it was the right thing for us to do."
This'll impact all riders of all types of motorcycles.
This is assuming you actually you have your motorcycle to ride, legal or not. More details are coming out about Mid-West Choppers, the custom shop most famous for the first 9/11 motorcycle auctioned off last year.
The Register Mail reports the former owner Chip 'Miyler testified that a portion of the down payment money he received from customers - either through checks or the transfer of property, typically motorcycles that Miyler in turn sold - was used to cover the overhead of the business rather than order the parts needed to build each specific motorcycle.
"The business was in the red and as soon as the money was deposited, it was gone," said Miyler, admitting Mid-West Choppers was overdrawn and writing bad checks.
At this point unsatisfied customers have no chance of getting the 'dream bike' ordered and can only hope there's enough cash from motorcycle parts and money to get back deposits after creditors are satisfied.
What a shame.
So a quick check of the weather shows a high of 73 degress with a mostly sunny day. Looks like perfect riding weather to me. Just as well my company observes martin Luther King day!