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The reason I ride Harleys is simple.

First ride back from Phoenix to Yuma on a hard-rode '66-'67-'68 Frankenstien XL -- a summer night in 1972.

I flew along in the dark, the buzz numbing my palms, my right foot and my cajones, the canal knats kamikazing on my goggles. I was grinning like a chesire and damn sure nothing in the world could be any better.

I was just west of Gila Bend when it happened -- a single brilliant streak of hot white light cut the sky open, east to west, almost in a perfect line with the highway. From the contrail fell millions of tiny sparks drifting toward the horizon.

I pulled over to watch the display fade. Setting there in the desert, smell of the hot iron and oil rising up, the stumble rumble of that XL filling my head -- it hit me. I was free. I could snick into 1st, turn and ride anywhere I wanted. With my old army surplus knapsack, $200 in my pocket, and the XL between my legs, I could see the world -- no one could stop me. That moment changed it all.

If I close my eyes I can still see that white hot light. It was a map for me and my Sportster. I've gotten lost along the way a few times, but she knew I'd be back, and I am -- the light is still there to guide me toward the horizon.

I've worked hard, and now have earned the right to own a pair of Harley's. I do all my own maintenance, repairs and custom work, and I wouldn't have it any other way.

I ride anytime, anywhere, for any reason, in any weather as long as I can can stay upright and the ice ain't too thick.

I wear a full face helmet because I want to -- complete with a *Helmet Laws Suck* sticker.

My favorite T-Shirt reads -- No, it Ain't a F*****g Rental.

My favorite M/C parts shop is Lone Rider in Moab, UT, because the owner treats you with the same amount of respect you show him, no matter how long you've been riding.

I will wave at anyone on two wheels -- I don't care what you ride as long as you do, and I will defend to the death your right to do so.

And yes, I know your YamaKawiSuki has 12,000 rear-wheel horses, can do wheelies even when its turned off, will run forever without so much as an oil change or a loose screw and costs less than an official Harley Bar and Shield Oil Dipstick... I'm happy for you..

But when we both pull up to the light, our motors idling, and all the soccer dads -- and some of the soccer moms -- sneak a look at those bikes, I'll take heavy odds few of them are fantsizing about roaring off on a ride whose exhast note can't even heard over the rumble of my BT.

Yeah, you'll beat me to the next light -- but I win hands down when it comes to the life.

In the end, what really matters is, as the man says, that you love what you ride, and ride what you love -- all the time.

<)JIN!(>

wordshop1

01 1200C
01 FXSTD
 

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Welcome to the forum,wordshop1!

Thanks for the fantastic intro, I swear I could smell the hot iron & oil of that Sporty!!

A person with your passion & experience can be an invaluable asset to this forum,hope you post often.

Cheers!
guido
 

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Believe it or not, the road to Yuma thru Gila Bend hasn't changed all that much.

Nothing like night riding in the desert with the spirits talking to you.
 

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Welcome, your story brought back memories of many rides on my old amf sporty, I could smell and feel that bike . I have an flht now, but every time I go into a Harley dealer I go look at the sportsters, my dream is to get an older sporty and strip it down and try and restore it, I do my own basic maintance ,fluid changes adjusting etc, but am not a mechanic, although I think I could do it. Everytime I see a sporty for sale on the side of the road I stop, I would like to find one with the old syle oil tank. I think 2 bikes is the way to go, no wait a 600cc thumper enduro would be nice and maybe a Ducati ,ok four bikes would be ideal. saferiding,rickpoco
 

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Welcome to the forum, Wordshop1. You should write for American Iron magazine.
 

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Wordshop1, I don't reckognize your handle from the other forums. I read a few others but choose to participate in only this one, by far the best, second only to none! But one in particular, geared to motorcycles of all kinds, seems to attract people whose sole passion in life is geared towards bashing Harley-Davidson owners. It would give me great pleasure if you were to post this incredibly awesome evaluation of your yourself, as well as the countless other devoted Harley owners of the world, on that board. It is the American bike forum of cycleworld.com To others here, let's give WS1 a great round of applause and a hearty welcome.

BTW, the arguments there can be very entertaining, however, they also get vulgar and nasty.
 

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Great story telling !!

Agreed ,by far the best intro . Makes my own
one very trivial indeed . However , back in 72
I was still in diapers so to speak and in the eighties when I was sorta eligable riding a scoot , there was a dramatic change of
atmosphere . Always remained a fan of the 70's though (for some reason associating it with the reek of stale beer and the sound of Grand Funk Railroad and Ramones and casual saturday night fights ) . Bad excuse I know but still ...I am glad there's still people with a story around on this world .

Rik
 

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on the other hand though ...

I may look like a soccer dad , (no split beard and long grey hair ..the Johny Mariner type and all that) but .....

I don't think I need a T-shirt to state my bike ain't a rental ...I let it speak for itself ..haven't seen rentals that aren't 100% stock lately ;-)


(sorry , couldn't resist ;-)

Okay , I think shift to the tech forums again for a while now.


rik
 

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Harley-Davidson's clothing line does'nt make you look like you're wearing a snowmobile suit!:D :D :D
 

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One of the reasons I like this forum is it seems like folks here just like to
ride H-D.I really haven't read any *** bike bashing which shows me
people here have class as to let people be.
Ride safe
Masher
 
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