2010 A Strange Year In My Head

I’m not sure how to describe the past year. It whizzed by and I’m not sure I can remember it. All I can think of is that it was a healing year. A year of recovery. I’m still affected by the fatal accident that took the life of our friend during a motorcycle trip on April 24th, 2009. The realization of how fragile life is, still has me in a strange spell. Back when I had nothing, I had nothing to lose. I lived life with more swagger then. A little more in your face attitude. Since Diana came into my life and helped me get the things I wanted my attitude is different. The combination of having so much combined with the knowledge that it can all be lost in a split second has made me live life too carefully. The in your face guy was replaced by the scared guy. Scared to lose what I have gained. Hopefully I can get my swagger back. Hopefully I’ll remember how to say “Screw it! Let’s Ride!”

Although I still don’t enjoy riding as much as I did prior to the accident, we did a lot of miles this year. We did a lot of fun things! Diana and I felt a little more experienced in 2010 and struck out on our own a few times. We rode the Blue Ridge Parkway both in the spring and in the fall; just the two of us. We went to Gettysburg Bike Week too. Diana lead a chapter overnight trip to western Maryland. She earned her Road Captain patch. She impressed the heck out of me when we were challenged on the road with life threatening road and weather conditions on two occasions.

The economy sucked ass. Although I am one of the lucky ones who is still employed the ominous recession is depressing. Friends keep losing their jobs. A year ago Diana and I worked feverishly to remodel her townhouse to put it up for sale. We would travel out of state on weekends to do as much work as possible in 48 hours. We removed wallpaper with a steamer, we put in new flooring, we painted, we wired, we did everything until we were too sore to move. Unfortunately the house has been on the market all year and has not sold yet. We could lose it to foreclosure. It has messed with my credit. I have experienced the the unpleasantness of collection calls for the first time in my life. If we manage to sell it we don’t make a dime off the sale. It totally sucks how hard we worked and it seems like it was for nothing. It’s heartbreaking.

I took an active role in the the 2010 Delaware and Maryland State HOG Rally as the Volunteer Coordinator. It was an interesting experience. My fellow First State members came up big in the volunteer area to make sure I didn’t fall on my face. I’m sorry the rally itself didn’t turn out to be the event I was hoping it would be. I am inspired to take the lead on planning a better HOG rally in the future… but not 100% committed to the concept at this time. More like 95%

The year went by fast. We did a lot of riding and other things with our HOG chapter that left us exhausted by the end of the summer. I got depressed and almost decided to step down from being Director. My friends helped me get my head out of my butt, pick myself up and get psyched up for my final year as Director. It was a good year for the chapter. We set participation records all year long! Especially at the big events like our annual picnic and holiday party.

I know this year will go by fast. I have new experiences ahead of me that I am eager to jump into. I look forward to doing more writing, possibly working on a HOG state rally proposal and even getting more involved with the motorcycle community on a deeper level.

2011 Choppers & Bobbers Calendars

choppers and bobbers 2011 calendar

What’s better than a 2011 Chopper Calendar or a 2011 Bobber Calendar? A 2011 Choppers & Bobbers Calendar with photography by the world renowned Michael Lichter! Order your 2011 Choppers & Bobbers calendar now! Or just order the 2011 Chopper Calendar… it’s up to you! Click on the pictures for ordering information.

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2011 Vintage Motorcycle Calendars

2011 vintage motorcycle calendar

Time to order a new 2011 vintage motorcycle calendar to keep straight all the dates you have for bike shows and swap meets. Click any picture for ordering information or click here to see all motorcycle calendars available for 2011 at my Amazon store. Harley-Davidson Calendars and Hot Biker Babe Calendars also available.

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2011 Biker Babe Motorcycle Calendars

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Time to order your 2011 motorcycle calendars complete with smok’n hot biker babes and custom motorcycles. What could keep you straighter in the new year? Click on any picture for ordering information on that calendar or click here to view all motorcycle calendars at my Amazon store.

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2011 Harley-Davidson Calendars

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The year is coming to an end folks and you should order a new 2011 calendar. That way you can schedule your runs, rides and events and you won’t miss a thing. There are several Harley-Davidson calendars available for 2011. Click on any of these pictures for ordering information. Click here to go to my Amazon store and view all the 2011 motorcycle calendars, some come with hot biker babes!

Official Harley-davidson calendar 2011

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American Biker – Book Review

American Biker by Bill hayes

I received an e-mail from Beverly Roberts of Flash Productions asking if I would like to review a new book. Of course I wanted to; that’s what I do (among other things). I received a copy of American Biker signed by the author Bill Hayes! He inscribed the book to me:

To Jay!

This book is dedicated with love & respect to the entire biker culture!

Motorcycle Hall of Famer, Keith Ball, refers to Bill as “The world’s most literate biker”. Bill has been living the lifestyle and writing about it since the 1960’s. Not just a journalist writng about the lifestyle but a patched club member giving you the inside scoop on the biker culture, no holds barred. Full emotional double barrel truth from the author’s perspective. A perspective true American Bikers will respect. Bill is also the author of The Original Wild Ones: Tales of the Boozefighters Motorcycle Club. I believe Bill is a member of the respected Boozefighters MC. The BFMC is one of the oldest motorcycle clubs in existance and most renowned for their acts at Holister in 1947. The Boozefighters MC were the original Wild Ones; the inspiration for the first biker flick: The Wild One. A new era was ushered in and Bill’s book the American Biker is now here 67 years later to give you: The History, The Clubs, The Lifestyle and the Truth

I’m a HOG member, not a patched club member. I don’t live the lifestyle but I envy it. I am fascinated by it and anything to do with motorcycles. I’m an enthusiast, not a biker. At least I don’t think the likes of Bill Hayes or Sonny Barger would consider me a biker. I read this book with some mixed emotions on whether I liked it or not. After reading it from cover to cover it inspired introspection on my part so I have to say it was a great book! Many a book can be good and educate you, but how many books challenge you and leave you thinking deep thoughts about what it is you hope to accomplish in your short time on this planet as a special guest in the biker culture? That is the affect this book had on me.

I can’t help but try to compare this book to One Percenter by Dave Nichols. Dave is the Editor of Easyriders and Bill has been a columnist for Easyriders. Both authors cover many of the same topics giving a history lesson of how this phenomenon of the American Biker came to be. The style of the two books however come across totally different. I reviewed One Percenter and likened it to a text book. It is put together well and published by a Motorbooks Publishing, a fairly large publisher. American Biker comes across less polished but with more edge. This is not the product of large corporate America. This book is the product of a small independant publishing company dedicated to the truth about this culture. This book was written by a man who has seen this culture from the inside and had a burning in his gut to tell you the truth about it with passion from his own personal view! And so he does! As I read it I felt like this old school biker had grabbed me by the ear, sat me down, told me to shut up and schooled me in everything related the the club culture. I imagined us drinking a few beers as he lectured me on the way it was and the way it is!

Now we have at least two books covering the history of motorcycle clubs. If you are an old school biker like Bill Hayes and Sonny Barger you don’t need to read a book on this subject because you know. You were there. Then why write the book? I think the first reason is to educate people like me. If at all possible we don’t need a bunch of RUBs running around on Harley-Davidson motorcycles thinking they are the American Biker. We need to educate these new bikers on the culture that they grew from. They need to understand how this sport and this fraterntiy came to be so they can respect it. Secondly the Old School Bikers of the 50’s and 60’s who created this lifestyle, who molded this image, will pass. Bill Hayes has done this country a great honor by documenting the lifestyle for future generations of Americans. It would be a shame if the original red blooded American Bikers passed without a book like this to share the truth about American Bikers. Thank you Bill Hayes!

Although I make a few cents commision if you buy this from my Amazon store I feel obligated to tell you-you can buy it for less and get a signed copy from Bill Hayes through the following website: www.americanbikerthebook.com