Thursday, June 14, 2007

I'm Off Again

Up to Noo Yawk for an evening of fun & frolic with the NudeCritics crowd. In order to justify the trip to my employers, and blag a ride on the company shuttle plane, I have to do some (ecch!) work tomorrow, but until then it's Breakfast at Tiffany's on some rooftop on the Yupper West Side.

Meantime, try to talk me out of this thing, Go ahead: Try.


Just looking at it, a thin line of drool forms on my chin.

32 comments:

bobby lightfoot said...

5500 is a lot of vitamin supplements and soy products.

Did it work?

thestoic said...

Have fun, boyo...beware the dreaded wasps of Columbus Ave.

pi said...

It isn't a Vincent Black Lightning.

(Nor is it a BMW R/GS, which is the two-wheeler that's been giving me fits since I foolishly sold the 800GS some years back. But I think maybe we have different dreamscapes here.)

JC said...

Don't forget the old saying that there are two types of bikers: Those who have had accidents, and those who will have accidents.
Will you stop by the "Knight Deposit" for ole' times sake?

bobby lightfoot said...

Aye, JC- wiser words never spoken.

Thing is, every guy's gotta have his motorbike moment. I had mine when I was 17 and on my own for the first time and got me a James Deanish '70's Honda CB 160.

Used to rock that fucker on the two-lanes upwards of 90. Three weeks in, when I was starting to flirt with triple digits I realized I was going to kill myself or worse, go quadraplegic. That'll put some spittle on your chin if you get my drift.

Doesn't change th' fact that every guy's gotta have his motorcycle moment and Jing's got kids so he'll probably make it through fine.

Andre said...

Is that the famous Prefab Sprout Steve McQueen motorcycle? If so then that's more than enough justification.

Anonymous said...

NEddie - don't forget the helmet - only Gary Busey didn't need his brain (but I haven't seen him blogging, either)

Jim 7 said...

Gee, college reunion, followed by motorcycle lust? Next you're gonna be looking up old girlfriends on the internet.

Have you seen the Scrambler?
http://www.cycleworld.com/article.asp?section_id=12&article_id=98

A used modern one is about the same price and won't strand you. But the heart wants, etc.
Don't forget the OilDry...

Kevin Wolf said...

Neddie, I hope the gathering is great fun. Unable to attend, I found out about it too late and at this point feel I'm a mere arrivant over at Newcritics, anyway.

And buy the damn cycle already.

Gray Lensman said...

Enjoy the Triumph. I've been riding 'scooters since about ought-fifty-something and I have never had a spill I couldn't walk away from. I had a '67 Triumph T100C which was the tough little brother of yours. It was almost perfect and very beautiful.

Riding a classic motorcycle is an exercise in self-restraint. Wear a hat and pay attention and you will be fine. It's the most fun you can have with your pants on.

Neddie said...

Wear a hat and pay attention and you will be fine.

My thinking exactly, Gray. I'm 46, not 16, and my Need for Speed left me long ago. I'm going to be the elegant geezer tooling along at the speed limit and enjoying the landscape, not some wanker trying to wind it out in fourth.

JC said...

I should have kept my mouth shut. I have now unwittingly cast myself in the role of the dweeby killjoy.
I have enjoyed riding motorcycles and various other motorized two-wheeled vehicles in the past, often drunk and without a helmet. Most recently in Key West, about 7 years ago. But those occasions were only for brief periods of time, such as conferences, vacations, etc. Having one at my disposal at all times is a different gig altogether. There are too many other things that I do and enjoy that might be jeopardized by even a not-so-serious accident. I couldn't face the world without running, bike trips, tennis, and swimming. Also, if I had a bike, the temptation to go fast would be strong. How rational would I be once I had the opportunity to let it rip? In addition, although Neddie and I are the same age, each of my 2 kids are, respectively, a decade younger than each of Neddie's 2 heirs. So, although the odds of having a fatal accident aren't terribly high, a little less than 1 in 1000, I'm not sure I like those odds now with tykes around.
It suddenly occurs to me that the bartender at the establishment I mentioned in my previous e-mail had a bit of a MC dust-up. Yes, he lived to tell the tale, but, from what I recall, he had sort of a limp, didn't he?

Neddie said...

I think I did eight things today that are actuarially more dangerous than riding a motorcycle. Let's see: I took four cabs in New York City, I crossed many, many streets, often against the light, I drove my truck with a very slight buzz after a dinner that included a beer, and I flew on a jet-plane.

The thing is, JC, that, as I mentioned before, I really am not in this for the Speed Factor. That does not fascinate me. I would use this bike for the commute, yes, at times of the day when I'm at my absolute soberest, and perhaps for weekend jaunts to faroff places.

What attracts me to this particular bike is the year of its manufacture, not its power and pickup. If I wanted that, I'd be contemplating a Japanese crotch-rocket, not a 1964 Triumph TR6. This is (as pi intuited) about different "dreamscapes"; this is about owning and proudly displaying an artifact from a year that I consider a pinnacle of civilization....

The poet Larkin may have put it best (quoted from memory):

Sex was invented in Britain in 1963
Between the end of the Profumo Affair
And the Beatles' first LP.

That bike is from 1964. That's what fascinates me. If not a Triumph TR6, then it would be an Aston Martin, or a Mini-Cooper, or an E-Type Jaguar. I love that era, and think that we reached some kind of a high-water mark then.

JD said...

I knew an *exemplary* young man who owned a Triumph once. Long reminiscent sigh....

bloom said...

yes

Neddie said...

Molly? That you?

Happy Bloomsday, kid!

glue birl said...

Jeddie, Get that cool bike, but don't fool yourself that you're not going to want to open that baby up to see what it can do.

Blue Kid got a scooter for Christmas and when I took it out I was all safe and motorin' along at 20 for about 10 minutes. Then, I'm like... I need to see what this thing can do!

I got it up to 50 which felt like I was flying. Then I imagined hitting a rock in the road or something and headed back home.

JC said...

OK, Neddie, I think I've got it now. Your purchase of this bike has nothing whatever to do with sex. No, no, speed, speed. I meant to say speed.

Dennis said...

*sigh* Now you got me to reminiscing about my beloved Bonneville. That was back in the mid-Sixties when I "knew" that I couldn't be hurt or killed.

Davis X. Machina said...

I, too, had a Triumph itch. They're the only motorcycles that look like motorcycles...

Get a copy of Ted Simon's Jupiter's Travels, his round-the-world-on-a-Triumph book from the late '70's.

And then buy a bike that won't spend most of its time on the workbench, in pieces.

bobby lightfoot said...

Nah, you'll be like me with th' Red Lady (vintage 1979, of course) and the best times you have with it are when it's on the workbench in pieces.

You'll go to chat rooms and you'll find all the places on th' interweb that sell the _exact_ NOS parts and you'll have that thing looking like it did when "A Hard Day's Night" was a new release.

And you'll probably end up a decent motorbike tech. My dream now is to be Herbie Hancock's Rhodes technician. In 1972.

Neddie said...

Welp, I just got back from buying it.

I do get the sense from the guy selling it that it's going to be the kind of thing that'll strand me somewhere right when I least need it. "A tinkerer's bike," he called it.

But: completely rebuilt engine, new carb, rebored cylinder, yadda-yadda... I should get some useful, worry-free time out of it. And, Bobby, it already looks like it did when AHDN was new. Absolutely perfect.

And sweet Jesus, what a fuckin' cool bike! And when he started it (first kick) the noise it made was this unearthly roar that was the most testicular thing I have ever heard -- and I'm a guy who's many times plugged a concert-tuned Les Paul into a Marshall stack turned up to 11 and slammed a fist-A chord. Like that.

Now...the wait. I don't get it delivered until Sunday, and I have to take a three-day bike-safety course down at NOVA Community College before I can apply for a license. (Don't have to, but it's part of the deal with Wonder Woman.)

Gray Lensman said...

Congrats on the Triumph. For at least your own peace of mind for a while, wear a small backpack with tools, clutch cable, throttle and brake cables, and a short length of rope in case it refuses and you can get someone on a bike to tow you. The Mikuni carb should make that unnecessary. The only reason mine wouldn't start was if I washed it in the car wash and the points would get wet under the pretty little cover on the side of the case.

About the tools: unless the restorer has changed the fasteners, you'll need some metric and some Whitworth wrenches for the various parts. My T100C also had some SAE bolts I think. Google the bike and print out everything you can find about the TR6. The more you know...

Have fun!

Neddie said...

GL: The bike tech's way ahead of you; he's already ordered me a set of Whitworth wrenches.

And, the bike came with original manual and parts list. Those Brits knew from technical documentation back in them days -- hold me back, I'm GBC bound!

I'm thinking of saddlebags, which will contain the items you list.

Gray Lensman said...

Jolly good, old chap!

My KLR650 and I will be thinking good thoughts for you while we're cruising through Rocky Mountain Nat'l Park this weekend, Grand Lake to Estes Park.

I'm smiling over here...

Intensity Collins and His Fast Action Jalopy said...

Congratulations are in order, Sir! Live to Ride, Ride to Live! Mister! Arm curls and the leg lifts! 2-wheeled freedom! naked to the horizon! hot horses of greasy temptation! no more middle of the road namby pamby power steering! Miss Marshall Stacks looks and smiiiiiiiiiles right at you with her globes (and she will - easy - no double or triple takes - Eyes on the Path) . . . . Peel off slowly and see what real Triumphs lay ahead when you just ease on down into the throttle nice and slow. Live to Ride, Ride to Live! May the Road Rise With Ye!!

mark smeraldi said...

A propos of loving the era and the artifacts which appurtain to it, I find it significant that 1969 was the last year of the "good" Triumphs. All downhill since, eh? I refer you to "Vincent Black Lightning" by Mr. Richard Thompson.Looks like all the right stuff was done (especially the Mikuni) I'd guess there's years of smiles in that machine. As an owner of old & new Ducatis I say; DO IT

Jim 7 said...

Congratulations, and as we said at my dad's Esso station, Happy Motoring.

billy pilgrim said...

Jealous over here Neddie.

I've had the bike jones since I rode a friends kawasaki 400 in high school, finally got a little Yamaha city bike, sold when I offsprung.

But now the toddler enters teenhood, and the call of a hog becomes louder every spring....

Face it. some people will never see a bike as anything but a future accident. Others see them as transportation, keys to a bit of freedom, youth, etc.

But sometimes, there's just a pure visceral glee in riding in the wind, hearing the noises of travel as you wind through the landscape and lean into those turns...

I'm with you. I'm 45 and will never skip a brain bucket again on a bike; the speedy crotch rockets are so not what I want.

But still the heart wants what it wants; and someday soon I hope to join you, in spirit at least, on the highways.

pi said...

I knew it.

Neddie, at our age it's not one's own speed or control that's the main problem. It's everyone else on the road.

Stick to good daylight and less-crowded roads. Please.

Neddie said...

Stick to good daylight and less-crowded roads. Please.

That's the beauty of it, pi.

My commute is entirely on uncrowded country back roads. Not till I hit Ashburn does it even begin to get crowded, and by most standards even that ain't very much. Couple of red lights. That's about it.

JC said...

Speaking of "Mr. Richard Thompson," he will be at the 9:30 Club on Friday, 6/22.