Posted: 12/16/2010 - 5 comment(s) [ Comment ]

I hate this time of year. Not for its crass commercialism and forced frivolity, but because it’s the season when the food police come out with their wagging fingers and annual tips on how to get through the holidays without gaining 10 pounds. You can’t pick up a magazine without finding a list of holiday eating do’s and don’ts.  Eliminate second helpings, high-calorie sauces and cookies made with butter, they say.  Fill up on vegetable sticks, they say.  Good grief.  Is your favorite childhood memory of Christmas a carrot stick? I didn’t think so.  Isn’t mine, either.  A carrot was something you left for Rudolph.  I have my own list of tips for holiday eating.  I assure you, if you follow them, you’ll be fat and happy.  So what if you don’t make it to New Year’s? Your pants won’t fit anymore, anyway.

1. About those carrot sticks. Avoid them. Anyone who puts carrots on a holiday buffet table knows nothing of the Christmas spirit. In fact, if you see carrots, leave immediately. Go next door, where they’re serving rum balls.

2. Drink as much eggnog as you can. And quickly. Like fine single-malt scotch, it’s rare. In fact, it’s even rarer than single-malt scotch. You can’t find it any other time of year but now. So drink up! Who cares that it has 10,000 calories in every sip? It’s not as if you’re going to turn into an egg- nogaholic or something. It’s a treat. Enjoy it. Have one for me. Have two. It’s later than you think. It’s Christmas!

3. If something comes with gravy, use it. That’s the whole point of gravy. Pour it on. Make a volcano out of your mashed potatoes. Fill it with gravy. Eat the volcano. Repeat.

4. As for mashed potatoes, always ask if they’re made with skim milk or whole milk. If it’s skim, pass. Why bother? It’s like buying a sports car with an automatic transmission.

5. Do not have a snack before going to a party in an effort to control your eating. The whole point of going to a Christmas party is to eat other people’s food for free. Lots of it. Hello? Remember college?

6. Under no circumstances should you exercise between now and New Year’s. You can do that in January when you have nothing else to do.  This is the time for long naps, which you’ll need after circling the buffet table while carrying a 10-pound plate of food and that vat of eggnog.

7. If you come across something really good at a buffet table, like frosted Christmas cookies in the shape and size of Santa, position yourself near them and don’t budge. Have as many as you can before becoming the center of attention. They’re like a beautiful pair of shoes. You can’t leave them behind. You’re not going to see them again.

8. Same for pies. Apple. Pumpkin. Mincemeat. Have a slice of each. Or, if you don’t like mincemeat, have two apples and one pumpkin. Always have three. When else do you get to have more than one dessert? Labor Day?

9. Did someone mention fruitcake? Granted, it’s loaded with the mandatory celebratory calories, but avoid it at all cost. I mean, have some standards, mate.

10. And one final tip: If you don’t feel terrible when you leave the party or get up from the table, you haven’t been paying attention.

By Craig Wilson, USA TODAY


Posted: 10/18/2010 - 3 comment(s) [ Comment ]

Last Saturday, October 16th, Lucky and I decided to go to American Heat in Palm Springs.  We planned on going the scenic route ...  aka: Ortega Highway ... but the weather changed our minds.  We woke up to sprinkles and lots of wet roads. 

We left around 7:30 am and I know our new next door neighbors thought we were crazy!  First, they see us taking out the bike to ride in the rain and then they see us packing a blow up kangaroo!  Joey!

We met up with Terry (Wheels) and his wife, Cheryl in Temecula.  We were supposed to meet at a gas station, but Lucky and I were there early and hungry, so we grabbed a breakfast burrito at a small Mexican place acorss the parking lot.  I guess Terry must have seen all the CycleFish stickers and flag on our Road King, because in they walked.  It was still about 60 degrees when we left Temecula, so I'm wearing layers of clothing and leather from head to toe.  I hate being cold!  Took the 79 to the 371 towards Palm Springs.  A nice windy road with relaxing scenery.  I saw a sign that said "Bighorn Sheep Crossing" but I think that was a lie.  I've NEVER seen those darn sheep!

As we got up over the 371 to the 74, it quickly went from 60 degrees to 95 degrees.  Needless to say, I was boiling in my layers of clothing!  Pulling over to a retail parking lot, all four of us began to strip our clothes off.  Not ALL of all get your minds out of the gutter!

As we approached downtown Palm Springs, we noticed very few motorcycles on the road, and when we arrived at the American Heat venue (a closed off 6 block area on Palm Canyon Drive) we were surprised to see that there weren't many people at all.  Lucky and I had gone to American Heat about 9 years ago and it was packed with bikes.  This year, we were able to park right away and real close to the vendors.  Probably a sign of this sad economy.

We hooked up with Russ and Cindy (BikerCrap) and our other friends, Kevin and Bea.  Actually found seats at a bar called Hair of the Dog and had a few beers.  We also took a few pictures with Joey.  Joey likes Palm Springs!  Walked around the vendors and checked out the show bikes and did alot of sweating.  I still can't believe you can drive only 60 miles from 60 degree weather to 95 degree weather!  Only in California.

Found a burger joint and proceeded to eat a regular sized burger that cost $12.00!  We also noticed that the place normally charges $12 for a pitcher of beer, but for the "Welcome Bikers", we now had to pay $16.50.  Nice.  Time to head out, because now we are broke.

Terry and Cheryl had to go to a birthday party and Lucky and I decided to drop by and see the grandkids.  On our way home (in the dark), everything was fine until we got to the 241 Toll Road.  It was Halloween scary.  The fog was so thick, I don't think Lucky could see but maybe 5 feet ahead of him.  We were surrounded by fog and it was wet and cold.  God was watching over us as we rode through it and made it home safely.

Well, it was great to meet Terry and his wife Cheryl!  We had a fun time.  That's what I like about Cyclefish...when we don't want to ride alone somewhere, we find someone on Cyclefish to ride with!




Posted: 8/28/2010 - 0 comment(s) [ Comment ]

We started out from South Orange County, CA on Tuesday morning, August 3rd.  Weather was looking good, and I was "praying" for no rain in Sturgis when we got there.  Unfortunately, my prayers were answered...get to that later.

Out on the bike at 5am to Barstow to meet up with HarleyMan, Debrajo's main man.  DebraJo couldn't get the time off, so she was flying in to Rapid City on the 7th.  I had no back up on this trip.  Just two dudes against me.  Not cool!

We meet up with HarleyMan (aka Richard) in Barstow around 7:30am, eat breakfast, get our lottery tickets (oh, well, just me!) and on our way through the Nevada Desert in August.  Nice.  Not.  By the time we get to Mesquite, it's over 120 degrees!  We stopped at McDonald's for some water and I begged to just camp in McDonald's.  I don't know why we didn't pack water?  Who needs water riding a motorcycle through the DESERT?!

We survive and enter Utah and make a quick stop into the Zion Harley Dealer.  Water!  I notice how late it is:  4:00 pm.  I'm thinking, wow, we are lagging.  Duh.  Forgot the time zone change.  I was delirious from the heat.  Forgive me.

Stop for the night in Beaver, UT.  (Ha Ha!  I said "Beaver").  We stay at The Beaver Lodge which was quaint and very reasonable.  There was a little cafe a few buildings down where we could eat dinner.  We check in, get unpacked, shower, and ready to go eat.  WHAT?  Thunderclouds.  I'm actually happy for a little rain.  Relief from the heat we had.  But no...............Really?  It's hail!  Now if anyone here knows Lucky, he does not like to walk, not even the few buildings away to the cafe.  So we ride the bikes, in the hail, two buildings away, to the cafe to eat!  Man, that hail hurts.  I'm ready for a beer!  Wrong.  Forgot I was in Utah.  The kind waitress tells me "we have no alcohol, but I can get you a root-beer!"  You could only imagine the look I gave her.

The next morning was a little chilly.  Well, to me it was!  The boys were acting like they were having hot flashes.  Don't care.  It got up to 90 degrees and I still had my chaps and leather jacket on.  Go ahead, laugh at me.  I'm used to it.

The trip through Provo, UT was actually very pretty.  We were going to try to go East towards the mountains, but there was an ominous black cloud.  So we kept going North to Wyoming.  We ended up staying on the 80 and stopped in Rock Springs, WY for the night.  Visited the Flaming Gorge Harley Dealer.  Talked to a man from New Zealand.  Now that was an experience!  I didn't understand a word he said.  We just laughed and nodded our heads.  Damn Kiwis. (That was for you, Boof!)

That night we needed a drink, since we didn't get one in Utah.  Went to a bar that was recommended called "Porky's".  Good country music and Bud Light.  But we were so tired, we didn't party long.  Got hungry, though!  Decided on KFC.  Did we ever make a scene there!  Kept teasing the poor young lad working there and Lucky finally gave him a tip!  Maybe we were too tired AND a little too much beer!  You know the patrons were thinking "typical Bikers".

Thursday, we were very lucky dodging those thunderstorms through Wyoming.  Everytime we saw a dark cloud, we would stop, check the map and change course.  As long as we were going North or East, we were heading the right way!  We started on the 191 and I was freezing!  This time, so were the boys.  We stopped at a corner store (which was the only building around for miles) and asked for some directions to make sure we were on course.  I'll tell you this: people in Wyoming are the most helpful and friendly.  Everyone we talked to would tell us which way to go for sightseeing and which way was safe, etc. etc.  Good folks in Wyoming. 

We left the 191 and took the 29 East and that was beautiful.  It also started to warm up a bit.  Then to the 789 and had lunch at McDonald's and a family there told us to take the 16 and go visit a city called Ten Sleep.  Ten Sleep got its name by being ten sleeps (nights) between the Great Sioux Camps and the Platte River to the south, and the northern camp located near Bridger, Montana.  Looked more like a biker town to me!  After getting gas and water in Ten Sleep, we rode through Buffalo.  Did I see any buffalo?  No.  Lying town name.  Finally got to the 90 and hit Gillette.  But we still had energy and decided to ride for another hour into Sundance.  I'm glad we did.  It was nice small town and we stayed at the Bear Lodge.  Walked across the street (didn't have to look both ways as there was no traffic) and went to a bar called the Turf Bar & Lounge.  The bartender-cook-liquor store guy was great.  Yep.  He gave us our drinks, made our food, and tended to the drive up liquor store!  What a great employee!

Finally Friday morning, the day we ride into Sturgis.  Bikes everywhere!  Got to the Buffalo Chip and our Cyclefish Camping Area that was saved for us.  It was hot!  Why did I pray for no rain?  Set up tents and got beer and ice.  Now is the waiting game.  Waiting for all our CycleFish friends to show up!  But they wouldn't be with us until Saturday, so our job was to guard the CycleFish camping area.  By bedtime, Lucky and I are exhausted and Richard is sick of the Sturgis traffic and heat.  Richard wanted DebraJo by his side!  Lucky and I go into our tent for the night and a huge wind comes up.  I'm thinking tornado, but what do I know?  I only know about earthquakes!  Our stupid tent zipper breaks.  Looking back now, it's funny:  Lucky was trying to use duct tape to fix it.  Didn't work.  So now he's taking out his knife and making holes and getting string so he can sew it together!  Not working.  Finally, we get our tarp, thread it to the outside of our tent and hold it down with our cooler full of beer and ice!  Time to finally Sturgis!!

My next blog:  "Being in Sturgis".


More pictures in Lucky's Road to Sturgis Album!!!


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