Wednesday, May 21, 2008


I don't know if the price of gas is chasing people to the local scooter shops, or if the fact that scooters are cool is the reason, but the little gas saving fun-mobiles are popping up all over this area.

This past weekend was very nice and warm, and it seemed that everyone that had a motorbike or scooter was on the road. We took a little family drive and stopped at a fast food joint, and I was blown away by how many Harley's and metric cruisers rolled by with the riders in the slouched, bad to the bone riding position. Everybody was posing and looking sharp, and to tell you the truth, I thought it was awesome.

There was also a glut of really sweet scooters rolling through town to the ferry terminal on their way to the Garden City scooter rally in Victoria B.C. Canada. I was amazed at the number of vintage scoots buzzing by, with some folks dressed in garb making the look very authentic. Even Mod Kevin made it to the rally on his Lambretta, and he looked perfect in his parka and puddin' bowl helmet.

My weekend was cut short by having to pull a shift at work on Sunday, so it looks like I'll have to wait till next year to join the fun.

On the homefront, I worked on my current scooter project, and made contact with the guy that has the WWII military Cushman Airborne scooters. I hope to see him on Saturday and have a look at these gems. And as old motorbikes go, Oilcan Kurt has got his Simplex Servi-cycle in the paint shop now, and I have offered to help with the restoration project. There is something about being involved in bringing an old bike back to life that really appeals to me. Maybe its the heavy smell of epoxy paint hanging in the air...I'm not sure.

Anyway, I need to get my camera fixed before I can share some photo's of what I've been up to, and that should be done soon. So, until then...

Have fun,


Blogger irondad said...

Don't you hate it when work gets in the way of fun? More of our students are touting the price of fuel thing as a reason for being there. I just hope they take this riding thing seriously.

11:17 AM  
Blogger Mod Kevin said...

Since you've told me about the project I can't wait to see it. You'll have to stop by some time again when I'm home.

3:39 PM  
Blogger Bill Sommers said...

I hope to think that these folks will take riding seriously. I do understand the appeal of riding in relation to the cost of fuel too, but in the end maybe the riding bug will bite these people and riding will be a way of life from now on.

Mod Kevin,
I'll try to get by whenever work doesn't interfere with my free time. That isn't often lately either.

Have fun,

5:11 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Bill I wish I had your skills to even be INVOLVED in bringing a bike back to life.

Hope you're getting plenty of riding in this season.

8:05 PM  
Blogger BBC said...

Bill, it's okay that you didn't allow my comments, it's just the truth as I and others know it is all and you don't have to agree with it. Not everyone likes and agrees with the dilbert zone, after they get to management levels, but the comics are spot on.

The only people/friends that I don't offend at times are a few of my most intelligent ones. I've never not allowed a comment but what ever.

Scooter and motorcycle popularly is really nothing new, you have just become more aware of them is all.

As for the price of gas, I'm all for it getting much higher, it will force needed changes being as America is so spoiled and only pays lip service to the health of the planet.

I've spent my weekend at home so far, away from all the traffic, oh, and fixed my band saw. BUSTED AND FIXED

I bought a new camera about a year ago, you can have my old one if you need one, nothing wrong with it.

1:26 AM  
Blogger BBC said...

It hasn't been about just riding a scoot to me for some time. It's been about pollution and trying to save the planet.

Lots of folks may get into scooting but don't think that your group will grow a lot because of it.

That isn't what scooting is to them, it's about pollution, and those that just want to save on the fuel bill.

It doesn't mean that they are going to be interested in clubs or clicks. They have other lives, they'll just be using them for their transportation is all.

I have little time for clubs myself even though I've been biking and scooting all my life. Have fun with your little club though.

7:42 PM  
Blogger BBC said...

but in the end maybe the riding bug will bite these people and riding will be a way of life from now on.

Only if it is forced on them, haven't you noticed that Americans like to be spoiled?

7:44 PM  
Blogger Bill Sommers said...

My skills really aren't that great, but my enthusiasm for jumping in and getting dirty is. I'm happy in a shop environment, and believe that greasy hands and coveralls are a beautiful thing.

Billy B.
Thanks, I might just take you up on the kind offer of the camera.

I've actually been aware of the popularity of motorcycles and scooters since I've been riding consistantly for over 30 years. It's my amazement of the new wave of enthusiasts that gets me all jacked up. Be it for fuel saving reasons, or the love of two-wheeling doesn't matter. They are riding, and that is a great thing to witness.

Thanks for dropping in. I don't normally bump comments, but I wasn't sure where you were coming from, and I know some of my readers would have questioned the content, and I wouldn't have had an answer. I'll see you soon.

Have fun,

8:40 PM  
Blogger BBC said...

Thanks for dropping in. I don't normally bump comments, but I wasn't sure where you were coming from,

Well, I am complex, and complex people are often hard to understand.

6:42 PM  
Blogger Kano said...

I'm re-thinking this gas price problem and not seeing it as a problem at all. Anything that would encourage people to throw less carbon into the atmosphere has got to be good thing. European society has adjusted, so can we. I love seeing the noticeable increase in motorcycles and scooters!

2:20 AM  
Blogger American Scooterist Blog said...

Bill, I'm looking forward to your new project. In light of what Bill C wrote, the idea that buying a scooter or motorcycle to save fuel use is really a false economy. Unless people trade in a car or park it and cancel the insurance on it, there's really no savings relative to what they're trying to achieve. Spending thousands to save a virtual percentage (large older car to a smaller newer car) is bass ackwards. The same with getting a bike. The difference is with a bike chances are more likely its discretionary income funding the bike, so while those monies might've been spent on a big screen tv with no cost balancing return percentage for example, they're now used to fund a tool in order to see a usage return via the cost of operation. If a new rider understands that, its one thing. If that rider doesn't, or comes to realize it next time the insurance bill is paid, guess what, new two wheeler may likely get sold before the averages in loss become much greater. False economy.

The much larger point, and one I'm convinced most "higher thinking" folks tend to miss is that its not what one drives or rides as much as it is the distance per day that matters most. Commuting in a high mileage car to go twenty plus miles both ways each day still means you've used your vehicle for forty miles a day and 200 miles per week! That's around ten thousand miles a year not considering the fuel wasted in traffic jams where mileage decreases substantially. Also, the longer the distance necessary to be travelled, the less likely there are alternative routes in case of emergency. Add in the cost of a designer coffee and a skone for the long ride in (maybe both ways?) and you've spent another tank's worth of fuel money per week. The lost time in the morning, the lost free time in the evenings, the extra wear on the vehicle, the emissions produced over those forty miles per day including the emissions spewed sitting in traffic jams etc, just don't add up. Oh, did I mention the higher costs of insurance and risks incurred by those high daily commute miles?

If people used some common sense, they'd move to within ten miles of their work. At worst they could bicycle that distance and use NO gas. But assuming that we have to curtail emissions with more stringent controls and higher mileage cars only admits we're not even asking the right questions. Questions which ask Why it is we refuse to face the simple fact we've become presentation addicted and we have to make up for it by living in neighborhoods and houses which are on the edge of what we can afford instead of places in which our discretionary income puts US back in control of prices of commodities. When you can afford something and you realize you don't have to buy it, you're operating from a position of power and real personal wealth.

Bill, I believe it was necessary to respectfully respond to the other reply because the answers are clear. But we need to be asking the right questions to get to them. (phone number for your use only-> 320-229-2736


8:56 AM  
Blogger Bill Sommers said...

Man, it's good to see you again. You are right. It is good to see all the two-wheelers on the road. Whatever the reason.

You nailed it in all the ways that I wasn't able to. The "answers are clear," and the response from you is appreciated. Thanks for the number.

Have fun,

9:19 AM  

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