Monday, May 31, 2010

Flooring Project

With my brother-in-law providing tools and expertise, Teresa and I were able to complete the living room flooring project. The final touches like shoe mold and touch up paint will get done today.

Next project: continue the floor into dining room.

Memorial Day

Friday, May 28, 2010

Freedom's Last Stand

Not too long ago, two friends of mine were talking to a Cuban refugee, a businessman who had escaped from Castro, and in the midst of his story one of my friends turned to the other and said, "We don't know how lucky we are."

And the Cuban stopped and said, "How lucky you are? I had someplace to escape to." And in that sentence he told us the entire story.

If we lose freedom here, there's no place to escape to. This is the last stand on earth.

And this idea that government is beholden to the people, that it has no other source of power except the sovereign people, is still the newest and the most unique idea in all the long history of man's relation to man.

You and I are told increasingly we have to choose between a left or right. Well I'd like to suggest there is no such thing as a left or right. There's only an up or down—[up] man's old—old-aged dream, the ultimate in individual freedom consistent with law and order, or down to the ant heap of totalitarianism.

And regardless of their sincerity, their humanitarian motives, those who would trade our freedom for security have embarked on this downward course.

Spoken by Ronald Reagan on October 27, 1964

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Wednesday, May 26, 2010


It was lunch time and I was hungry. So I grabbed my sun glasses and hopped on the bike. The fast food restaurant was just around the corner and I decided to fore go my helmet for the 1/2 mile ride.

At the parking lot I pulled into the only open parking space, right beside a Hilliard Police cruiser - cops gotta eat too - and walked across the parking lot to the entrance. As I passed between cars in line for the drive through window, I heard a female voice say, "Where's your helmet!"

I looked around and at first only saw the police officer passing between the line of cars, too. And then I saw the face of an office co-worker who was in line for the drive through shaking her finger at me.

"You should be wearing your helmet!" she said. Sheepishly, I nodded and said, "Yes, mom. But it's only a half mile here." She frowned and pulled forward. "See ya back at the office."

I turned to enter the building and saw the cop smiling at me and holding the door open.

"I get the same thing from my wife." he said. "Of course, I promised her when I got my bike, I'd always wear my helmet."

I nodded my head understanding completely. "I think I may have made that same promise to my wife." I said.

Yep. Busted.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

50,000 Mile Tire?

It was a modest gathering of riders for our group's monthly bike night at a local eatery last night. But I saw something one of the senior riders had done to his to Vulcan 900 that I'd thought unwise, if not impossible.

Keith is in his 70's and has been riding all of his life. Two weeks ago he installed a car tire on his rear wheel. It's a General Tire 195/60/15 radial. He says he has about 500 miles on the new rubber and so far, is very pleased with the ride he has experienced.

It looks very strange to stand behind the bike and see a motorcycle tire with a straight-line contact patch of nearly 7 inches. Of course, the trade off is the contact patch is greatly reduced when cornering. Especially aggressive cornering.

Keith says that with the type of riding he does, the tire is working really well. He says, there is little or no wobble when on gravel and sand. And he expects to get between 40,000 and 50,000 miles out it. The tire cost him about $75 and will last 4 or 5 times longer.

Part of the increased mileage is due to the hardness of the rubber. The rubber of motorcycle tires is softer and stickier, something every rider appreciates when the road turns wet. But Keith maintains that his wet road riding felt just like the Metzler ME880 he took off.

Knowing Keith's cautious attitude to riding, I am sure his decision was made with careful thought and research. And I know if he feels unsafe the Metzler will go back on faster than it came off.

Has anyone else ever swapped out their standard MC tire with a car tire?

Ride Safe!

Thursday, May 6, 2010

This and That

Spring decides to stay

Spring must have decided to stay awhile in central Ohio. Finally. I can tell because I have made my daily commute via 2 wheels 3 days in a row this week. And my outlook on life has improved because of it.

There is one thing about these early season days that I have a hard time dealing with... and that's the 30º to 40º (F) temperature swings. In the mornings when I leave the house, our rural area has temps in the 30s and 40s. Then the sun comes up and by afternoon the mercury has the upper 70s in it sights. I need all the storage space in the saddle bags for the clothing I've shed.

A small price to pay, I think.

Musical floors?

The flooring project continues. Like so many projects, the scope has increased a bit. I knew because of my desire to do the work myself and pay cash for all materials, that it would take longer than if I had contracted the work out. The prep work is almost complete and the hardwood should arrive next week.

I suspect that I will have to take a few days off work to complete the installation. Spending a couple of hours on the project 2 or 3 nights a week and all day on Saturday is really stretching this out longer than I can tolerate.

For the past 6 weeks, we have been "living" in our dining room while the demo and contruction takes place in the living room. After the living room floor is down, we will move all of the furniture from the dining room back into the living room and then complete the removal and installation for the adjacent dining room.

Time keeps on moving

The calendar tells me that I passed middle age a few years ago. My head shakes and reminds me, "Whoa. Not so fast!" My heart whispers, "Never grow up." Regardless of what voice I listen to, the fact remains that I have more years behind me than before me. That truth seems to be reinforced more frequently of late as I note the passing of older friends and aquaintences.

The drummer for our band lost his dad this week. Bill was a young 69 years old and his passing caused me to pause and reflect upon life, family and friends.

Grandpa Doug?

Did I tell you I'm gonna be a grandpa? "Impossible!" I first thought. "I'm too young to be a grandpa!" But then, of course, I'm not too old. The baby is due around November and I'm really looking forward to excercising my rights to spoiling my first granchild.

Ride Safe!