Meeting People via Motorcycle Style . . .
I took off Saturday about noon for another shakedown run on the panhead chopper. I already had about 35 miles on from the morning coffee run to Clarksville and around. I headed toward Nora Springs to check out the annual Buffalo Days Car Show, chow a real buffalo burger, and have a cold High Life. I then made a loop through Osage on backroads - and snaked up to the Town Pump in Mitchell, Iowa. It was hot and balmy - the corn is knee high - all the streams flowing fast and full to the top of the banks from recent rains. Mitchell is a little hole-in-the-wall town with trailer houses wedged between stucco shacks. There's a few nice homes, manicured lawns with new F250s (but these residents work somewhere else) 'cause there's no opportunity in this place. I came blastin' into town doin' 65 in a 25 and coasted up to The Town Pump. A guy named Mick runs it - his original bar in Osage burned down years back, and he bought this place since it's all he knows - and he's good at it - a real, original bar owner type. Just as I got my stuff off, the front screen door swang open and out popped Jay - In a slurry vocabulary of jumble and stumble . . . "Holy fuck - look at that - sweet MF'r - damn, shit - I ain't seen . . . Fucken Aye - It's like it rode right off - n David Mann painting ! How much???? I want this fucker. Fuck. Man. I'm just standing there taking it all in. The door flies open again and the skinny, scratchy voice barmaid comes out next. "Jay, you get the hell away from that man's motorcycle . . . Get back !" But, as I talked with Jay, he's led quite a life - all by his own doing. Married, divorced, jail, married, divorced, on-the-run, back again, out and back again. His very own panhead confiscated. His whole life pretty much on the edge - probably due to that bottle of warm beer in his hand. Once I got him settled down - he was real cool to talk with. Jay knew a lot about old choppers since jockey, girder, devil's tail, stroker, flanders, jammer and wishbone were words that came up. I was impressed ! I didn't hang around long, but I thought about him on the way home. If I hadn't been riding that chopper - we might not have met. Maybe see Jay again sometime - maybe not. You meet the nicest people on a Harley.
Posted by Noot