Bike Envy

I dig my bike. Lenore looks good, and she’s been good to me. On the other hand, she’s a bit small and has a tough time carrying both me and a passenger.

Not to mention those Harleys are frickin’ sweet. A Honda’s nice, but nothing turns heads like a Harley’s classic looks. Softails, Sportsters… it’s not hard to see why Honda copied their styling. There’s nothing wrong with Honda-Davidson rides like my Shadow: they’re cheaper, they’re reliable, and many tell me they’re a lot easier to work on. At some point, though, you realize you have to have that American original.

Dead Rider

Arr, matey! Put the hammer down!

There’s not a damn thing I can do about it right now, and I doubt there’s an upgrade in the cards for next year, either, but I find myself drooling over just about every cruiser I stumble across. My karate instructor gives me a hard time for gawking out the dojo windows whenever I hear a bike rumble by, and the Wife swears I must have spotted a girl in a bikini the way my head snaps when we’re out and about. Which one would I choose? Good question.

All I know is I’m not a big Electra Glide guy. Those big touring bikes are workhorses, but by the time you put a full-size passenger seat and the big bag — effectively a trunk — on the back, they just lose their charm. A Road King Classic, though, with the sleek back end, the bags, and the fat front fender? Yeah, that works. Black, of course. Cost may limit me to, say, a Softail Classic, but hey, I’m sure I’d live.

Then again, if money were no object? I’d have to check out an Indian. Dump the tassels from the Chief Dark Horse and I just might love it forever. Or better yet, buy a real classic, hire a wrench to restore it if necessary, learn to maintain it, and ride it ’til it falls apart.

Meanwhile I’ll have to content myself with customizing Lenore. She could use a good set of crash bars. Maybe some highway pegs, too. I wonder how tough it would be to get the decals off the tank and put a different pain job on it? Maybe find a fat fender at a parts shop, or off a junked bike… Yeah.

Damn. Guess I best start selling some books and make some money.

About Mike Oliveri

Mike Oliveri is a writer, martial artist, cigar aficionado, motorcyclist, and family man, but not necessarily in that order. He is currently hard at work on the werewolf noir series The Pack for Evileye Books.

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