26.1.15

It's riding time again

"KSU at 11am Sunday at Johny Rottens?" "Sounds good." Linda's friend answers. We'll call her Miss Kitty, that name is as good as any. Weather and temp look good for a launch. She just brought home her brothers 2008 Harley Davidson V-Rod and is anxious like a little school girl to ride it. She understands the rule already. Ride and Have Fun. Boom. Linda and i roll into long gone Johny Rottens, after bundling and layering the leathers. I like to be comfortable. I see Miss Kitty has neither UnderArmour nor leathers, so i ask. "You gonna be ok? Warm enough?" She replies in that sweet Alabama drawl that is as real as it is cold today "Well heck no. I got me a big ol warm engine in between my legs to keep me warm." We all enjoy our morning chuckle at her seriousness. We roll easterly along the south bank of the St. Johns River, then work our way north on 415. Miss Kitty says "man o man the road work up this way is rough." I tell her, "This will provide you the opportunity to practice your skills." She laughs, saddles up and gets to practicin. She'll ride like a man some day. Another skill to practice is riding in and out of the world famous Foxhead in Osteen. A cold adult beverage hits the spot after that test. Now. On to the jungles and a road i call Tale of the Gator. Reed Ellis to Enterprise Rd to Green Springs. If you don't dig this trip, you don't belong on a motorcycle.
the spirits of wild and rough characters that enjoyed this corner of tranquility still roam here in the jungle... stay tuned.

17.1.15

Old Man Winter

Too cold? Or Too Old? That is the question. Whether tis nobler of the the mind to suffer the slings and arrows of these brutal Florida winters and ride old Snoop Skoot, like the wind, or, to bundle up against the cold, stay in the comfort of the homeplace, and thereby end the shivers?
I've riden in winters so cold, I've had to wear every set of gloves I own, and still had frozen knuckles at the end of the ride. But now I'm of an age, that I test the outside temps by feeling the window panes, then jump back in the warm and toasty sack and dream of the days when I ask, Too hot or too old...? lovetorideridetolove

14.1.15

life?

It's one of those ageing things they don't warn you of. Going to funerals. The longer I live, the more funerals I attend. They don't get easier. I have heavy funeral baggage, just like most. In fact I had to quit attending the Chapter funeral runs last year, it was too overwhelming.
Last Saturday I said my final goodbyes to one of the good ones. A good friend's wife and high school sweet heart, who loved life and let her light shine brightly every day. Yes, they were motorcycle peoples, but oh so much more. They moved away from my neighborhood a few years ago, but I still would see them at Chapter functions and although her brutal disease was already affecting her, she still smiled the biggest smile in the crowd. Her eyes would light up upon making contact with yours, enough so to reassure you that everything was ok.
At the ceremonies a lot of they're Chapter brothers and sisters came to pay respects. When I hugged him, I just blubbered up, as did he, and words were worthless. We agreed we loved each other, then I moved along so he could be hugged by other sad friends.
The procession filled the roadway as far as one could see thru teary eyes forward and backwards.
She loved her black cowboy hat with a silver band and would just be so snappy looking as to always light up an event. So, one of her Chapter sisters brought hats for all the sisters and they asked me to snap a memorial pic. I did. It is perfect. just like she was... rip...

4.1.15

"Attention. Atten...Hey is this thing working?" the new 2015 Chapter Director Mike Goudreau quickly asks Harold. "Flip the switch." and so right on cue the new year begins Schog Style. "Attention, attention. All right this is the first un official ride of the new year. First stop is JJ's. Then John has a route thru the jungle to get us to the Leesburg dealership. Pass the signals back, ride safe and have fun." And boom, we saddle up in the middle of 35ish rare'n to go bikes and riders and smoothly but powerfully parade out of the Seminole County Harley Davidson Dealership parking lot. I can't tell you how good it feels to ride in a pack of bikers that know how to ride. The Seminole County Hogs create a presence on the road. In control and on their way. Boom. Dats it.





We roll west on Hwy 46 across the Wekiva for 13.4 miles to our first stop at J. J.'s Package. I quickly skoot my lovely sweetie into JJ's, knowing this crowd has really worked up a thirst. The beer is cold and not as affordable as one would think, being out here in the middle of nowhere. But the good times are advancing. We like it so much here, lets stay for another, then just roll hard to the party? Works fer schog...


Feel da love...
Ain't it grand how just one cold adult bottle of sunshine and the smiles are rockin from cheek to cheek. After too many cloudy days, today is always sunny in the jungles of Florida. We are having such a nice visit and decide to have just one more, then roll hard to the party. Assistant Director JT has a route riddled with motorcycle treats. Guaranteed to get you high.







I am the luckiest man alive today, because i have the love of my life, who has been gladly (?) handcuffed to me these last 39 years, along on the ride. She's pretty picky about what rides she goes on. She has mad skills with the camera. While riding 1200 miles on the Grand Circle back in 2010 she perfected her craft. She will wiggle left, then twist right, then lean way over with the camera close to the rear tire for that just right angle. Then i have to twist left and wiggle right and stay smooth. But her work is well worth it. Here are her two best shots of the day on the road.
Sharon D. Johnston

Sharon or the bike. The bike or Sharon. Wow. Which looks mo betta? It is the best compliment i can give is that she rides like a man...












J. J. is one of the first Directors of SCHOG, "many years ago", he says. But he still rides like the wind.


And then we got high, then we got high, then we got high. JT guides us north and west on all the hwy 44's to Thrill Hill Road in quite Eustis. Florida bikers understand why this area is Thrill Hill in a way hmm, say Coloradoans can't. This is a brutal 18% grade, tree-lined, small country road that requires throttle up all the way in the sky up over 140 feet. Chug, chug.? Is that my carburator coughing in this thin air?? 
Whew, lets get to http://www.gatorharley.com/
 the absolute hardest working man in show business and great fan of schog, is tuning up for an afternoon of rock n roll.
You will never ever see BF snorin, This picture is historic... Snore on BF, well earned...

then boom. just like that he rocked the day away. schog has a long and valued friendship with the BF Band. They've played just for us at State Rally and at our Christmas party. This day was not a day for the same old same old songs. BF played good times rock and roll with a fever and the crowd responded. 

Long live rock and roll...

the crowd kept on a rockin, but this old man was ready for a putt. we rolled easterly to the shores of Lake Dora and the county seat at Tavares, with our good friend who is back riding again.
Seeing the joy of riding reminds us of why we ride.
so remember.
ridetolovelovetoride





19.1.14

"Chilly?" Yes it was not quite 50 degrees by 9 a.m. and in Florida, that's chilly. It's also January 4th and time for some Chili at the Annuall Crime Line Cookoff and 3rd Annuall Matt Miller Motorcycle Skills Challenge.
Let the tasing begin. 5 Dollars, for all you can taste and a large bowl of Seminole Counties Special Chili, "are you kiddin me?". I'm in. Breakfast is an adventure this morning.

We, SCHOG's and the rest of the civilized world, loves our local Bahia Shriners and the outstanding service they provide.
 http://www.samswopecharityride.org/
Sam Swope is a man among men and his generousity with his time, energy and spirit is unmatched.
Our very own Seminole State Boosters are still grinning from ear to ear over being Number One  and the BCS Champs. Oh, and their chili was hot hot hot...

Dirty Jim, the chef, does not back down from a good old challenge and came to play seriously this year in his quest for the top award of Peoples Choice."50 lbs of braised and seared ox tail, 10 lbs of roasted, hand sliced Jalapenos, topped with smoked guida cheese and boom, this years winner." he gladly boasts to us.
 

Here is Dirty Jim, before the competition begins with the top chefs for the Seminole County Harley Owners Group. Oh yas. The SCHOGS proudly reclaimed the Peoples Choice  Award for the 3rd year in a row. Sorry Dirty, better luck next year...


Dirty's partner and leader in radio crime is Russ Rollins who everyyear strives to be the most unique chili master. Yes he is trying to look like Elmer Fudd and his lovely is whacky. O, and a little help from Mr. Willow Tree in the kitchen helped their Drunkin Rabbit Chili.
Russ and team went on to win "Most Unique" award for 2014. the fact that he is bestest friends with the event organizer is beside the point...
 




Lots of fun good spirited completion was had by all, but of course the Peoples Choice went to...SCHOG
 
 

and, as icing on the cake. which county do you think finished in First, Second and Third place in the motorcycle skills challenge??
SEMINOLE COUNTY.



whew, what a day. time to answer the call to couch and to burp up chili memories of one chilly/hot day...
 

22.12.13

waiting

Waiting to be engaged, or Engaged to be waiting?
That is the question of the day? Seriously? Ok, then. the law loves these curiosities. Playing with concepts, but I believe it to be dangerous to play the waiting game, period. Waiting is no longer an option, no longer a task in the American Dream...

20.12.13

a note to cagers

Just a note to all you cagers on the roadways of central Florida last Sunday, who were slightly delayed or inconvenienced by a large group of bikers rolling east and north.
 I, on behalf of Seminole County Harley Owners Group, locally and affectionately known as SCHOG, for said delays hereby apologize, and would gladly give you back those lost 3ish  minutes if I could. You see, Sunday was our annual Veterans Home Run up to Volusia County. For the last 7  years, SCHOG gathers up all it's beautiful women (of which we have plenty), t-shirts, socks, hats, and niceties to make these heroes from yesteryear a little more comfortable, during their stay at Emory L Bennett Veterans Nursing Home in Daytona Beach. The SCHOG Ladies gathered all the supplies and filled up 120 goodie Harley Davidson bags, and made sure each 118 of the men and both of the women residents got one. The SCHOG men, manned the grills and ice chests full of liquid refreshments. First veteran I speak to, tells me, "Oh yes, this is a grand day and I've been looking forward to you guys and your bikes for a long time." Boom. Smiles all around. Most of the residents were already at their favorite lunch time table with their friends ready for Biker grilled burgers and dogs. The Home staff had already eaten and now assisted the residents. Before lunch is served some residents rolled around the parking lot checking out the 100 thousand dollars worth of American made iron and wheels that rolled in just to honor these heroes. They shared tales of "my first bike was a ...", and riding memories, brought honest smiles to their eyes and hearts. It's a well known secret in SCHOG'ville that this ride gives us back so much more than we give. These heroes are my heroes...lovetorideridetolove...