Thursday, July 31, 2008

"EASY RIDER San Remo, Italy, Jun 17 After dining with friends, Keanu Reeves dodges overeager fans on his motorcycle"

Photo taken from July 7, 2008 People magazine.
My post title quote came directly from their photo.

I first of all must say, I did not even know Keanu was a biker.

Secondly, I think he looks like a total F'n dork in the suit with helmet and bike. Maybe that's why it looks like some of the girls in the back ground are laughing at him.
I know, I know, giddy with exitement. (BARF).

Thirdly.... Don't get me wrong here. I own a Sportster, and love Sportsters, but for a star of his calibur, a "stock" Sporty???? WTF???

I saw this and thought it was interesting.
Just food for thought.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

A Visit to Orange County Choppers - Road Trip

The regular monthly gathering of Chapter NJ-F (F Troop) of the Gold Wing Road Riders Association (GWRRA) was held at the Empire Diner in Freehold, NJ on July 27, 2008. After the gathering, many members and guests rode to the Orange County Choppers (OCC) headquarters in Newburgh, NY.

We rode in three groups, each with a leader and drag rider. Most members communicated via CBs to keep the groups together and informed.

I had seen the guys from OCC in June, 2004 when I was at the Americade Rally in Lake George, NY. At that time they were becoming well known through their TV show, American Chopper.

The motorcycle community was split as to whether they were amateurs who got lucky or genuine biker craftsmen who knew how to create a masterpiece chopper. I think that most were amazed that they caught on so fast and made a bundle of money doing what backyard mechanics had already been doing for 30 years.

Sometimes when I attend a motorcycle rally, something unexpected happens. At Americade 2004, I found out that the Orange County Chopper (OCC) cast from the Discovery Channel's American Chopper (now on The Learning Channel), was going to be in the area. This was not an official Americade event. It was thought up by the town fathers of Bolton Landing, a town 10 miles north of Lake George. They felt that they needed to do something to attract some of the 60,000 or so Americaders and get them to spend some money in their town. Turns out that a few emails and a phone call did the trick and the whole cast of Orange County Choppers (OCC) showed up for a 4-day run to meet with their fans and sell a few autographed T-shirts.

The Teutuls: Paul Sr, Paul Jr, and Mikey have to choose carefully their visits to rallies to allow them time to build the theme bikes required on their TV show. They skipped Laconia that year and instead did Bolton Landing where they brought 20 of their most popular theme bikes. Here's a picture of Paul Jr signing my OCC T-shirt. My wife, Jane, stood in a long line to get these shirts signed.

The Teutuls were just getting started then. They still had a small shop but millions of fans were watching them on TV every week to see that next theme bike being built and to hear the yelling and screaming as Paul Sr and Paul Jr clashed.

Years passed and they built a bigger and bigger reputation. Now they were in a huge building in Newburgh, NY that contained a showroom of their merchandise and products. Tucked in the back of the building is a small factory where their choppers are built in the glare of TV lights and multiple cameras taping everything going on in the creative process including the antics of the Teutuls and their employees.

Many motorcyclists now visit the facility. It's almost a motorcycle mecca. In fact, our group from New Jersey was only a small part of the riders present that day.

I took a few pictures of the new digs for OCC. The place is quite impressive. I have written descriptions and captions for each picture. Take a look.

If you'd like to know more about choppers, take a look at my Choppers article, my Chopper Gallery, and my Choppers subject. I also wrote a book review, Orange County Choppers: The Tale of the Teutuls - A Motorcycle Book Review.

If you decide to take a trip to Orange County Choppers, you won't be disappointed. Just don't expect to see any of the Teutuls there on Sunday, the day we chose to visit.

First picture ©2008 Jane Ann Kern; second picture ©2004 Walter F. Kern

Your speed...

Click on the picture to enlarge it.

Thanks to those of you participated in my scientific study from the "How Fast Did You Say?" post on thursday July 24th!


Tuesday, July 29, 2008

The pre - England Run 2008

Op Zondag 20 juli is er nog the pre-Englandrun gereden
vanuit de Oranje Nassaulaan te Utrecht.

Het weer was aanvankelijk goed maar het werde slechter en slechter zodat er spijtig genoeg een aantal senioren moesten afhaken en een klein groepje "diehards" toch van start gingen.

De bedoeling was om eerst een flinke rit te rijden en in de namiddag rond 15.30 uur een samenkomst bij eetcafe - restaurant De Jonckvrouw te Austerlitz alwaar ook niet "Engelandvaarders"
welkom waren.

Maar eerst rit die ging vanuit het Utrechtse ri. Nieuwegein-Tull aan 't Waal- de dijk op en de pont over richting Culemborg alwaar een uitgebreide koffie-met-appeltaart stop werd gehouden, omdat Pluvius het water met bakken tegelijk naar beneden gooiden.

Daarna ging het over de dijk ri. Amerongen en zo via Leersum en
de Treek richting Austerlitz.

Daar werd bij De Jonckvrouw onder het genot van enige gezellige Bollekes De Koninck de Engelandreis aanstaande doorgesproken. TT Hans onze Toercommisaris heeft het een en ander geregeld en reeds wat voorbeeldplannen uitgestippeld.

De bedoeling is dat wij donderdagmiddag vanuit de Groenekanse Veldlaan om ca. 13.00 uur vertrekken met een groep van 9 D.V.M.A.-"Lidjes". We rijden vervolgens binnendoor ri. Hoek van Holland alwaar de Brittanica om 22.00 uur zal vertrekken ri.Harwich alwaar wij om 06.30 uur aankomen en om 07.00 de ferry zullen verlaten om vervolgens ca. 160 km verderop ri. Kent >

Maidstone > Friars te rijden, alwaar het 1e kamp zal worden opgezet.

Daar zullen wij het gehele weekend deelnemen aan
de 24 th International* West Kent Run 2008.

*Het is dus een internationaal gebeuren met ca. 350 deelnemers

uit vele europese landen. Daarna kunnen wij tot en met 07 augustus

het programma zelf invullen met bijv.

een bezoek aan o.m. de oude Brooklands kombaan waar nu een museum gehuisvest is, bezoek vliegtuigmuseum en kustplaats Brighton. Op donderdagnacht 23.45 uur echter vertrekt de ferry Hollandia weer richting Hoek van Holland vanwaar wij de thuisreis zullen aanvaarden.

Het wordt m.i. best een spannende trip en
daarom spreek ik dan ook de wens uit
dat alles maar goed mag gaan.

We zullen het gaan zien!
Het zal ongetwijfeld vele verhalen en fraaie plaatjes opleveren...
Motoring George Spauwen

Star Wars...... Weekend review

Star Wars stole the day.

There are Trekies, and there are Star Wars nuts.

My son is a Star wars nut. He has Star Wars collectibles, and ALL of the movies. He's got multiple sets, special editions and so on. Although I don't really get it, I did enjoy the movies, and I can appreciate them.
When my son found out that the Science Museum here was having a Star Wars exhibit, he was dying to go. So, Mrs. M. and myself got tix to go and brought the young ens with.

We started out with an Omni theatre movie about movie magic, and technology, primarily based on star Wars, but not exclusively. Got to see ton's of stuff blow up. That was cool. The movie screen is Ginormous, and round so you feel like you are watching everything around you literally.
Kinda can make you motion sick if you aren't careful.
Then we went onto the exhibit portion where they had actual characters, costumes, and real props used in the Star Wars movies.

All in all, we had a great time. I especially like spending time with my family doing stuff like this, even if I'm not the Star Wars freak that my son is. I know it made his Universe, at least for one day anyway.

Here is a mix of photos that I took of things I thought were cool. I didn't want to post them all, as I took a ton of them, and barely caught everything they had.

Excuse some of the quality. I had to shoot through glass.