If it wasn't for bad news...

we wouldn't know what good news is.

Our car is dying. It might last a couple of months or a couple of weeks, but either way we are going to lose our main mode of transportation. It's a 1998 Dodge Neon and has recently blown it's third head gasket. Aside from that, the engine is making an awful grinding noise and the transmission is giving out. Replacing both would cost us a cool two grand and honestly, I don't think it's worth it. It's time to move on.

In the meantime, my bike is still in the shop getting it's tires put on. Next time, I'll have the tools to take off the wheels because this is wacky. There is no way that it should take a week to get the tires changed. It sure as hell would take a lot of wear and tear away from the car and save us the trouble of driving around in a vehicle that sounds like it's going to explode.

So, today (the gorgeous day that it was) was spent doing this...

Test drive

While I felt like this...


I'm sure there is good news out there...somewhere...right?

A very important interview

I have a lot of strong feelings towards what Billy Lane has done, I'm sure we all do. Mike Odom has a very important interview on his site with Byron Morelock, the brother of the Gerald Morelock. I'm not going to get into it here, but please...take the time to go over and give it a read.


Today I rode...

and it was rather unexpected.

The day started with what was supposed to happen yesterday. Had everything gone the way it was planned, Selene would have had her new tires on and I would have had the rims polished. Of course, we all know what happens to the best laid plans.

Me and Joey went down yesterday with full intentions on removing the wheels, but that changed once I realized that I didn't have the proper tools. For the first time ever, Selene was up on her jack and fully stabilized. That entire ordeal took about an hour and a half and a whole lot of creativity, but nothing more then a forceful shove would knock that bike over.

With that done, I pulled out my socket set and quickly realized that all my sockets were too small for the nut holding the axle in place. Also, none of my adjustable wrenches would fit. Dejected, we took Selene off the jack and vowed to return the next day with the proper tools. That meant a shopping trip and a full day delay to my plans.

Flip to today and us browsing Sears and Canadian Tire auto centers which taught me a lesson: tools are really expensive. You see, I don't skimp. I refuse to buy cheap tools because I fully believe that you get what you pay for and if something is going to fail on you, it will do it when you need it most.

A quick bout of frustration and a phone call later; I find out that taking Selene to the dealership and getting the tires done there is actually cheaper then me buying the tools. Done deal. I can always ask for more tools for my birthday or Christmas.

Half an hour later we are at the storage place with Selene's battery and are quickly putting her back together. It took a few pushes of the start button and some nice words, but she sleepily came to life and was more then happy to navigate the hallways to the garage. I quickly gear up and hit the road.

-9 C (16 F) with the wind in mid March, I'm riding and it felt good. Free once again. It was hard to believe that the night before it had been snowing enough to cover everything. I got Strange looks from everyone, but at least they were looking. I guess it's hard not to notice the only bike on the road.

At the dealership I got the usual comments: Hardcore, crazy, committed. It was all in good fun and I love seeing the looks on their faces when I ride up and walk in.

So, there you have it. My last couple of days all summed up nicely. I don't have any pictures because I quite simply forgot to take any...oops. Brand new camera and I don't get any shots of my first ride of the season...heh. I promise to get pictures when I pick her up. I'm sure Selene will be more then happy to show off her new set of shoes.

For the love of...

Is this ever going to stop?

Happy Anniversary

Well, here I am, one year later. I'm still a biker nut, I still have my sanity and things are actually going pretty well.

To celebrate a little, I've updated the look of the blog. If things don't look quite right, you'll have to bear with me. I'm still going to be making little changes here and there and I'm really hoping to turn this into a three column blog, but I have no idea how to set that up. If anyone has any ideas, I'd be glad to hear them.

Time was on my side yesterday, so I got a chance to get down and work on Selene for a while. The biggest thing I have left now is the wheels. Once they are off, I'll be able to clean them and get the new rubber put on. My lease on the storage unit is up at the end of March, so I'm hoping that the weather is going to be agreeable and let me ride her out of there.

Speaking of the weather, it's been super mild here with lots of rain. Needless to say, we have lost a lot of our snow. Can't say I'm sorry to see it go. The faster I can get back on two wheels, the happier I'll be.

Look what else I got...

I've got Selene's new rubber. This white stuff can't melt fast enough...

New toy

look what i got...

The K100D combines 6.1 effective megapixels with a host of advanced technologies, to deliver high-quality digital SLR photography and user-friendly operation to all levels of photographers. The K100D packs an array of advanced, user-friendly features — including the PENTAX-developed Shake Reduction (SR) system, high-precision autofocus and auto sensitivity control, into a compact, well-balanced body to accommodate a wide range of shooting and playback requirements. Its outstanding overall performance makes high-quality digital SLR photography effortless, fun and exciting for all users in all situations, from casual travel snapshots and memorable family pictures to highly specialized applications.

Let Them Ride

you know, there isn't much that will really set me off. i have my moods and i have things that i get mad about, but this kind of thing really irks me. i have a real problem with society's belief that we need to be protected by everything and that the government needs to govern that.

in New Brunswick they (meaning our political leaders) are trying to amend our off road vehicle act. this amendment would do the following:

all children under 14 years of age are banned from riding off-road vehicles if this new legislation unveiled by the provincial Liberal government, is passed.

personally, i think this is utterly ridiculous. i'm all for staying safe and if we didn't have a helmet law, i would still wear my helmet, but enforcing a law that forces me to stay safe? come on... i dread the day we become a dumbed down bubble wrap wearing society...

the new tire hunt

the hunt for new tires has been going on for some time now. the stock Dunlops that are on Selene have well over 13,000 km on them and are quite worn. the rear tire also has a plug that was the result of a nail picked up in Quebec. the search has been a battle of brands and prices, meaning i want a good brand at a good price. the Dunlops were great, but i want something better.

i've been all over the net and have even debated about buying my tires from the states and having them shipped to Canada. Cruiser Customizing always has great deals and were actually selling tires at 40% off regular price. i really didn't think i could get a better deal then that.

before i ordered, though, i figured i would check out a couple of local places and give them a chance. i'm all for sinking my money locally.

okay, tires sizes:

front: 120/90 R18
rear: 170/80 R15

tire brands:

Pirelli MT66 Route
Avon Venom
Metzeler ME880

i still chuckle at the fact that i had Pirellis on my Kawasaki 440LTD, but i digress. a few calls around town gave me these average prices (both tires, tax not included, in canadian funds):

Pirelli: $351
Avon: $396
Metzeler: $498

Cruiser Customizing was giving me prices of (in US funds):

Pirelli: $225
Avon: $340
Metzeler: $347

it was really looking good for Cruiser Customizing. i could get a damn good set of tires (Metzeler) for a heck of a lot less then any local place. even with the duty and exchange factored in, i would end up saving money.

then i called the last local place on my list. a place that i'd never seen before due to the fact that they are a little out of my way. a little place called Levesque Recreation. i hit them up with the brands and a few minutes later, they came back with prices:

Pirelli: $261
Avon: not listed in their books
Metzeler: $375

here is the real kicker...those are the straight prices with taxes in. sold! i couldn't believe the price difference.

i went down the next day to check out the shop and double check the prices. they are a small outfit with a small stock of helmets, tires and some parts. they do mechanical work on practically all makes and models (i could see a H-D and a snowmobile being worked on in the garage). there was also a beautiful boxer running around and investigating everything. he was behind the counter the whole time, but would stand up at the counter staring at you while chewing on whatever he could get his teeth on. i'll have to snap a picture of him when i pick up my tires.

so there you have it. it really does pay to shop around. it's a lesson that i have to learn time and time again. i'm famous for impluse purchases...ask joey...