In This Issue:
The Little Weather Quickie for the Week of Dec 5-12, 2011
Monday 62 showers late, Tuesday 64 few showers, Wednesday 63 rain, Thursday 53 p-cloudy, Friday 51 cloudy, Saturday 49 am clouds, Sunday 50 m-sunny, Monday 54 am clouds (as per www.intellicast.com on Monday 12/05/11)
Gaston County, Mecklenbury County
A bunch of Good Elves!
I enjoyed mysELF this weekend, how 'bout you? One of my favorite traditions has become going on at least one toy run in December. For several years now, however, I haven't been able to be a rider due to other gifts of my life - The Carolina Rider! As much as I love riding on those chilly runs, I'm having a blast from other vantage points. This past weekend was filled with especially wonderful moments in Gaston and Mecklenbury Counties as I and our cute Carolina Rider "Elves" handed out hot (really hot!) chocolate, cookies, doughnuts, and good cheer to chilly-but-cheerful riders.. I so love being around you Gaston County folks! You are all so truly warm and enthusiastic and man, you come out for this toy big run! The parking lot at Ranlo Church of God just bursts with Elves in black (and some in red!) Toy hauling trucks and love-giving hearts were filling up too for hours before and during this beautiful annual ride!
Charlotte CBA Toys for Tots Ride ... check out the bicycle strapped to the front of this motorbike!!
Some of the Charlotte HOGS partaking of the hot chocolate supplied by Harley-Davidson of Charlotte
The Charlotte CBA ride for Toys for Tots is always fun to be a part of for me. As a Charlotte native, I just love being in the parking lot of "the old Colesium" and then there's all the great riders who show up for this other huge ride of The Carolinas. Some individuals make their way their on their own but then there are the long lines of clubs who come roaring up together that just get my heart beating good. Sunday I was impressed by the showout of members of The Charlotte HOG Chapter....but, I'm pretty much always impressed by that dedicated group of riders!
It's always a hoot to see the toys strapped to the bikes. Kinda softens the hardness of the rolling iron (....but, don't worry, not so much that all those bikes aren't still kick-ass bad!)
In the end, I, like Jane, am not sure how many bikes were in either ride but I'm certain there were some big beautiful lines of bikes running thru Mecklenburg and Gaston Counties this past Saturday and Sunday....
Contributors to The Carolina Rider and The Carolina Rider Scene
And, speaking of Jane - please check out her Event Report on our HOMEPAGE and photos in our GALLERY. What a great year of stories and reviews and photos and reports from the many folks who have touched us through The Carolina Rider. Thanks Jane for all you have contributed! And thanks to Stealth for his continued commitment to his column Stealth's Custom Corner and his new columns coming for 2012, Stealth's Test Rides! And finally, more thanks to Jason Taylor for giving us a nibble each month in GatorBites and to Hollywood for his column Hollywood Helplines. Hollywood is taking a little sabbatical from his column but we're certain you'll hear more from him in the New Year!
Ed's Iron Butt Ride
This month I had a delightful opportunity to interview a rider who undertook something that we can all truly admire but few of us will fully accomplish - an Iron Butt ride! Talking with Ed Benson and his wife Joy and sharing Ed's story is a true honor and joy. The full story is on TheCarolinaRider.com.
There's something pure and lonely about a solitary ride. What you've got to offer and what the road throws back at you. A necessary challenge at times driven from the gut and inspired with the zest of living to the fullest. The motorcycle your comrade against (and for) the worlds that the two of you invade and retreat from. Whether a short buzz up to the corner pub or a long stretch of endless mile markers, a lone rider experience has a savory sweet flavor all its own.
I so enjoy ride stories and I am especially drawn to tales told by those who take on a ride as a personal quest. Such is the case with this account of taking the Iron Butt challenge. In fact, Ed Benson's story is of a ride within a ride within a ride within a ride for he earned not one but four Iron Butt certifications in the ride he set off for on July 9th of this year.
The fire behind rides such as these is often ignited by some personal awakening - a tragedy, a shifting of the ground beneath one's feet, a milestone turned. And so it was for Ed. "Two years ago, our HOG Chapter lost a member, and," shared Ed, "in his honor, Mark Armondi and I hit the road and did 1126 miles in just over 18 hours (Charlotte through Jackson, MS to St. Louis, MO) to put a flag on Bob Bull's grave and earning entrance into the Iron Butt Association and the Saddlesore 1000 certification. That was the start of long-distance endurance riding for me. Then my dad died in August a year ago and then another HOG friend, Lyle Davenport, this past February. I got the feeling that if I wanted to do something special (or stupid!,) I didn't have any guarantee and I had better get on with it."
And so he got on his bike and rode till he'd done the 1500 miles required to win him the next level in his chosen challenge - the Bun Burner Gold 1500. After a nap under a tree at Flying J Truckstop #736 in Pecos TX, he realized he had it in him to keep going and take on the rest of the adventure he'd planned out in great detail for himself….with significant assistance and support from a host of well-wishers and advisors.
... an eclectic little section dedicated to eclectic items sent in by our eclectic readers!
Help raise money to place Christmas Wreaths on veterans gravesites at the Salisbury NC National Cemetery Annex ...
Next Year (which isn't far off now!) ...
And speaking of Elves ... this guy seems to always find a few cute ones to sit on his lap!
Ho Ho Ho! Thanks to Brittany, Tiffany, and Trudy for their awesome work and gleeful selves on Sunday - and to Amber too (pictured in the steam of hot chocolate water below) for brightening up our table on Saturday!
"Go on now, squeeze out every drop of sweetness on your ride today!"
Fancy Free, Site Editor
I'm on Facebook ... "friend me!"
"Take a good close look at this 1949 Panhead and you will see there is nothing trashy about this bike. Just imagine if this bike could talk, the stories it would tell. Ben put Basura Blanca together with a BIG pile of leftover parts that had been lying around for three years."
This is the last bike for 2011 and one of the best for the year. The owner Ben Jordan of Jordan Designs has had a bike in Stealth's Custom Corner before, the bright sunshine yellow Shovelhead. Ben is no stranger to having his work featured, with articles on BIKERNET.com, BIKER, and EASYRIDERS magazines. He's a master at what he does and I have followed him for a long time. The first bike he did was very mild compared to his creations today. I remember it was a Sportster with Ape Hangers and a very nice paint job, nice but just a stepping stone to what he rolls out today.
You are probably wondering about the name, Basura Blanca, translated to White Trash. A friend of his at one time owned a dealership, a good guy who was friends to a lot of people. Anyway Ben tells me he would describe himself as just "white trash lucky enough to have a little money." So that is where the name of the bike comes from, just from joking around.
Take a good close look at this 1949 Panhead and you will see there is nothing trashy about this bike. Just imagine if this bike could talk, the stories it would tell. The old 49 is older than some of us and I would dare to say in a lot better shape!
Ben put Basura Blanca together with a BIG pile of leftover parts that had been lying around for three years. The 1955 frame was re-worked. Ben says it was hacked up and he contacted Brew at Brew Cycles and he worked his magic and put it back to specs.
Ben Edwards at Ben's V-Twins worked his magic on the engine and tranny. The work at Ben's V-Twin is bullet proof!
When Ben Jordan does a bike, it is not finished until every part has been touched and detailed to fit the bike. Check out the paint job by Ryan Young at Indocial Art & Design. It is an amazing job! The silver, charcoal, black, and coal colors flow like a cool stream, nice and smooth!
Basura Blanca just looks like a fun bike to ride and Ben tells me it is a blast to blister some black top with it.
I always look forward to talking to him. He is one of those guys who just "gets it." He tells me he is finishing a 1947 Knucklehead for the Easyriders show in January. I can't wait to see it and encourage you to look for it when the show comes to Charlotte 1/21-22/2012! I guess you can tell from reading this, Ben likes the old iron.
May the old 49 roll on forever!
Since this is the last feature of the year from STEALTH'S CUSTOM CORNER, I would like to close by saying I wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year! I hope to see you all on down the road! If you have a bike you would like to feature here, drop me a line. I would love to take a look.
Thanks for the Goodies!
Well FancyFree and Jane, "The Bling," have written about toy runs this weekend and I yet have to add my 2 cents worth. From my prospective it was great. We started what I hope will be a new tradition year for years to come: providing free hot cholocate, donuts and cookies. It was a really big hit and everyone was very appricative of the efforts. I do have to make sure that the right people get credit.... The free stuff was a joint effort from Harley-Davidson of Charlotte (Ken would want me to tell you he is in Matthews!,) The Law Offices of Jason E Taylor, (He would want me to tell you he covers all of North Carolina,) and The Carolina Rider dot com. For much more info, please read what Fancyfree and Jane had to say!
NEW LAWS TAKE EFFECT ON 1 DECEMBER: Nearly three dozen new laws take effect in North Carolina tomorrow, December 1st, including:
H 113. MOTORCYCLE SAFETY ACT [SL2011-361] - Provides that a failure to provide right of way that causes a motorcyclist to change travel lanes or leave its travel lane is an infraction resulting in a fine of not less than $200.00 and a fine of not less than $500.00 if the violation results in property damage or personal injury to the motorcycle operator or passenger. This bill was introduced at the request of and is actively supported by CBA/ABATE of NC.
H 381. CHECKING STATION PATTERN SELECTION [SL2011-216] - Prevents law enforcement agencies from establishing patterns for vehicle stops at checking stations based on a particular type of vehicle, but allows law enforcement agencies to designate any type of commercial motor vehicle and provides that the provisions of the bill do not restrict any other type of checkpoint or roadblock which is otherwise lawful. Actively supported by CBA/ABATE of NC.
H 427. RUN AND YOU'RE DONE [SL2011-271] - Provides for the seizure, forfeiture, and sale of vehicles used by defendants in felony cases involving speeding to allude arrest.
H 650. AMEND VARIOUS GUN LAWS/CASTLE DOCTRINE [S2011-268] - Expands the "Castle Doctrine" (allowing the use of deadly force against intruders in one's home) to cover one's automobile and place of work. It also expands the places where people with permits to carry concealed handguns can bring their weapons, making it lawful for permit-holders to take their guns onto state court property and into state parks if they secure them in their vehicles. It also allows guns at state highway rest stops and allows state lawmakers and other legislative employees to bring their guns to the legislative building as long as they keep them locked in their vehicles. It permits local governments to prohibit weapons from county recreation facilities. The legislation gives district attorneys, assistant district attorneys, and their investigators the same authority as law enforcement officers to carry weapons.
Looking for Regional Managers for The Carolina Rider
The Carolina Rider is also looking to expand all around The Carolinas....the coast, the mountains, and all points in between, above and below! We are currently looking for someone to manage the local publications, so if you know anyone who might be interested or qualified please have them get in touch with us!
Ride Safe and Keep The Shiney Side Up,
Jon "Footloose" Pendleton