Friday, June 06, 2008

This Is Not Your Father's Motorcycle!


My title for the post is a take-off on a highly unsuccessful adveritizing campaign a few years ago. Oldsmobile was trying to appeal to a younger demographic group. It failed. Twenty-somethings just won't buy an "old man" image of a car.

At the other end of the spectrum a lot guys in my age group are wearing ratty looking jeans to the office, growing beards, and sporting ponytails half way down their backs. Not only are they dressing exactly like their mothers wouldn't let them dress when they were young, they're buying and riding motorcycles. They probably smile inside, remembering Mom's hysterical screaming. "NO! You can't buy a motorcycle! You'll KILL yourself!"

They might have once dreamed of bikes with names like Triumph, Ducati, Jawa, Harley Davidson, Indian, Moto Guzzi, all American or European machines that their dads before them had learned to love, often while stationed in Europe during and after WW-II. The Japanese invasion, the names Honda, Suzuki, Yamaha, and Kawasaki, were still off in the future back in those days. But the day came when my own mother got the opportunity to scream "You bought a WHAT? A motorcycle! You'll get killed! Mark my words. You're going to KILL yourself.

Well, I'm still here, although my best friend about 35 years ago killed himself on his brand new motorcycle.

I don't know who owned this machine. I don't know who made it or where it's from. It sure didn't look like the motorcycles of my younger days. I was intrigued by the styling, trying to compose absract patterns of the red and the black, both intense colors, against the pastels of yellow. blue, and pink. I had no desire to ride it.

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