Monthly Archives: December 2008

Dec 31

34th Annual List of Words That Need to be Banished

By kevin | Random Walk

One of the very best end of year summaries comes courtesy of Lake Superior State University.  It’s their 34th annual List of Words to be Banished.  Here are the 2008 winners.

GREEN – The ubiquitous ‘Green’ and all of its variables, such as ‘going green,’ ‘building green,’ ‘greening,’ ‘green technology,’ ‘green solutions’ and more, drew the most attention from those who sent in nominations this year.

CARBON FOOTPRINT or CARBON OFFSETTING – “It is now considered fashionable for everyone, tree hugger or lumberjack alike, to pay money to questionable companies to ‘offset’ their own ‘carbon footprint.’ What a scam! Get rid of it immediately!” Ginger Hunt, London, England.

MAVERICK – “The constant repetition of this word for months before the US election diluted whatever meaning it previously had. Even the comic offshoot ‘mavericky’ was terribly overused. A minimum five-year banishment of both words is suggested so they will not be available during the next federal election.” Matthew Mattila, Green Bay, Wisc.

FIRST DUDE – “Skateboard English is not an appropriate way to refer to the spouse of a high-ranking public official.” Paul Ruschmann, Canton, Mich.

BAILOUT – “Use of emergency funds to remove toxic assets from banks’ balance sheets is not a bailout. When your cousin calls you from jail in the middle of the night, he wants a bailout.” Ben Green, State College, Penn.

WALL STREET/MAIN STREET – “When this little dyad first came into use at the start of the financial crisis, I thought it was a clever use of parallelism. But it’s simply over-used. No ‘serious’ discussion of the crisis can take place without some political figure lamenting the fact that the trouble on Wall Street is affecting ‘folks’ on Main Street.” Charles Harrison, Aiken, SC.

MONKEY – “Especially on the Internet, many people seem to think they can make any boring name sound more attractive just by adding the word ‘monkey’ to it. Do a search to find the latest. It is no longer funny.” Rogier Landman, Somerville, Mass.

ICON or ICONIC – Overused, especially among entertainers and in entertainment news, according to Robyn Yates of Dallas, who says that “every actor, actress and entertainment magazine show overuses this.” One of the most-nominated words of the year.

GAME CHANGER – “It’s game OVER for this cliché, which gets overused in the news media, political arenas and in business.” Cynthia, Mt. Pleasant, Mich.

STAYCATION – “Occurrences of this word are going up with gas prices.’Vacation’ does not mean ‘travel,’ nor does travel always involve vacation. Let’s send this word on a slow boat to nowhere.” Dan Muldoon, Omaha, Neb.

DESPERATE SEARCH – “Every time the news can’t find something intelligent to report, they start on a ‘desperate search’ for someone, somewhere.” Rick A. Hyatt, Saratoga, Wyo.

NOT SO MUCH – “I wish that the phrase was used not so much,” says Tom Benson of Milwaukee, who notes that it is used widely in news media, especially in sports, i.e. ‘The Gophers have a shot at the playoffs; the Chipmunks, not so much.’

WINNER OF FIVE NOMINATIONS – “It hasn’t won an Academy Award yet. It has only been NOMINATED!” John Bohenek, Abilene, Tex.

IT’S THAT TIME OF YEAR AGAIN – Nominated by Kathleen Brosemer of Sault Ste. Marie, Ont., for “general overuse and meaninglessness. When is it not ‘that time of year again?’ From Valentine’s sales to year-end charity letters, invitations to summer picnics and Christmas parties, it’s ‘that time’ of year again. Just get to the point of the solicitation, invitation, and newsletter and cut out six useless and annoying words.”

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Dec 31

Dan Roam on 2008

By kevin | Current Affairs

I’ve been a fan of Dan Roam ever since I read his lovely little book, The Back of the Napkin.

[amtap book:isbn=1591841992]

He almost never “rants,” something I manage to do on a regular basis.  He did recently in a blog entry called ”
Fixing the USA… or tilting at windmills?” It’s lots of fun . . .

First, let’s map out the biggest immediate issues we’re looking at: the financial sector, automotive manufacturing, the environment, and American infrastructure. (There are a bunch of other issues we’ve temporarily forgotten about, but they’ll be back.)

Rather than looking at them individually, let’s see where they overlap:

That’s interesting; several ideas emerge:

1) Where finance overlaps autos, we have a partial credit solution. Rather than giving more bailout money to Detroit, why not make payments from the $700 Billion to the financial sector contingent on Wall Street freeing up credit for GM and consumer auto loans?

2) Where autos overlap the environment, why not make payments to Detroit contingent on making more efficient hybrid cars that people actually want to buy?

3) Where the environment overlaps finance, why not get serious about developing the green economy?

4) And where they all intersect, why not make all government payouts go to helping the world’s (former) greatest manufacturers shift the shut-down assembly lines towards start building the windmills and solar panels that will power the future?

It seems to me there is a lot more that makes sense when the pieces are looked at in concert rather than alone. All the sudden potential solutions that have a long-term impact emerge.

I think I can sleep now.

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Dec 30

Mining the Rightwing Memes

By kevin | Current Affairs

Village Voice blogger Roy Edroso spent 2008 reading right wing blogs.  He’s been kind enough to summarize his favorite memes of the year.  Here’s the lead . . .

Excited (not to say deranged) by the long Presidential campaign, conservative bloggers — rightbloggers, in our affectionate parlance — were in top form this year, and outstripped the sleepy Main Stream Media in every way. If mainstream Republicans were content to call Obama a socialist, rightbloggers insisted that he killed his grandmother. If the GOP lashed out at Al Gore, rightbloggers denounced his cartoon avatar Wall-E. Rightbloggers turned even the dullest political fodder into comedy gold, and we honor their achievements with a year-end top ten.

The best line by Edroso comes in #2 . . . “It’s like King Lear played out in a madhouse with hand puppets.”  I need to find a way to work that one into conversation.

#2: A Late Defense of Richard Nixon. When it was revealed that Julie Nixon Eisenhower had contributed to the Obama campaign, National Review‘s Lisa Schiffren rushed to defend Tricky Dick from her treasonous daughter. “The fact that [Julie] looks like a carbon copy of her mother — a bit mad, but with a little more iron about the jaw — suggests that she is not her father’s daughter after all,” wrote Schiffren. Regrettably, Schiffren did not include DNA evidence. At least Schiffren was able to offer dead Nixon some comfort: “Trisha Nixon Cox (the blond, putatively less ambitious, ‘pretty one’) still looks like the girl America knew, and, recognizably, has given her campaign donations to John McCain.” It’s like King Lear played out in a madhouse with hand puppets.


Needless to say, the #1 storyline was the ever shifting “Obama is a [fill in the blank]” which made for good right wing theater, but added exactly nothing to their cause, and probably did less than that.  Something all us bloggers should remember.

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Dec 27

Getting “We” Involved

By kevin | Current Affairs

My friend and colleague Peter Flatow writes persuasively that unless “we” get involved, we’re going to be in lots of hurt.  He’s referring to “we the people,” the people that Bush left on the sidelines to spend, spend, spend while he did the same.  The “we” that were never asked to sacrifice for the great war Bush had declared, yet alone vote on it.  Well maybe it’s time for “we the people” to do more than spend and put a shoulder to the change wheel.  I think we’re ready.  Here’s Peter . . .

Tell us O what should we be doing? What behavioral changes do we need to make? What is your plan for us and how can we be part of the solution? Please stop asking me to give money to things. You said it yourself throwing money at things is not a solution. I remember growing up as I would walk down into our basement right by the door was a gray helmet with a CD emblem on the front, a whistle and a flashlight. Even though where we lived the houses were pretty spread out my mother was a local civil defense leader. The Cold War required us to be ready and everyone had a role. Who is ready to be an economic defense leader and what should we be asking them to do?

I agree with Tom Friedman we need to reboot, retool and reinvent but the operative word is we. Washington needs to quit doing and start engaging. Washington needs to show leadership and give out assignments and stop asking for money and throwing money at the problem, assuming they know what the problem is. Leadership needs to lay out, as Jack Kennedy did in his inaugural speech, where we need to be going. We must stop this reaction to where we have been. This will be my hope as I watch Barack Obama on January 20th.

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Dec 24

Conversation with Jerry Finley, The Man Behind Pirate's Lair

By kevin | Interviews

One of the very best parts about buying a new bike is researching all the farkles you just know you’ll need. Sometimes the treasure hunt leads you to familiar places, for example Touratech is always a first stop. Sometimes, and this is particularly true when you add a new marque to your stable, you find new sources of motorbike smack. That’s how I found Jerry Finley, who along with lovely Amber, keep watch over Pirate’s Lair, a dandy place to buy kit for your BMW bike.

What’s true about Jerry is true about everyone else I’ve interviewed in the business. Motorcycles and Motorcycling are something like an incurable itch, incurable to the point that folks like Jerry become convinced that they can do something better than anyone else. Maybe that’s making a thing, or maybe it’s selling a thing (in my case it was a conviction that I could write about it better than anyone else). Jerry does all three. That’s why I plagued him to tell me his story: It’s that passion that’s so interesting and makes hanging around with bikes and riders so compelling. And yes, I’ve bought a bunch of stuff from Jerry, and yes, I paid full retail, so don’t even think what you were thinking. He’s the real deal.

So here’s Jerry. Make sure you read the story about the Corvette . . .

Do the self introduction . . .

I’m Jerry Finley .. son of James… and along with my lovely wife, Amber I own and run Pirates Lair Motorcycle Accessories at www.PiratesLair.net. All my friends call me Pirate. I design, manufacture, and sell specialty parts primarily for the K12 series BMW’s but I do make a few goodies for Ducati’s, Hondas, Yamahas, and MV Agustas. We were just recently voted the #1 place to buy K12 accessories in the US.

What attracts you to riding motorcycles?

Not sure… probably the same thing that attracts me to breathing… I ride, therefore I am. I do love meeting and talking to fellow motorcyclists. Motorcyclists (not bikers) are much more interesting than non-riders.

When did you ride your first motorcycle? What kind was it?

That’s easy. I remember as if it was yesterday. It was a sunny day in 1965. I, a skinny 10 year old, came home from school, threw down my books, packed a snack, and headed out to the garage to get my bicycle for my daily “adventure” exploring the back roads of Nashville.

When I got to the garage…beside my bike, there was my father leaning over and polishing a shiny new Yamaha. I can recall his first words as if it was yesterday.. “Wanna go for a ride?” I remember him smiling then coolly getting on..kicking it to life.. me climbing up behind him and wrapping my little fingers around his thick waist. He grasped my hands, leaned around and said …”hang on”. The very minute we pulled out of the driveway I remember thinking… I hope this ride NEVER ends. At that EXACT moment…I knew I was a motorcyclist for life.

What was the first bike you owned?

It was a Sears 106.. Yes.. sold by Sears back in 1970.. made by Jawa. Loved that piece of crap single. Put about 10K on it before I was broad sided… put me in the hospital for nine MONTHS.. Broken up pretty bad. Almost died, but amazingly I was saved by a young doctor who had just returned from ‘Nam.. a trauma expert. Woman pulled left in front of me.. Her fault. Sued and 2 years later won enough to cover all my hospital bills and buy me a brand new Honda CB750. Wish they had had rider ed back then..

What do your ride now?

Currently own a 2006 BMW K1200S and a 2008 Ducati 1098S. My track bike is a 2006 Special Edition Yamaha R1

What bikes have you owned?

I think this list pretty much covers them..The years might be slightly off..bad memory.. too many drugs.

72′ Honda CB750
79′ Honda CBX
81′ Kawasaki 1000LTD
82′ Honda V45 Sabre
84′ Kawasaki GPZ 750 Turbo
91′ Suzuki 750 Katana
98′ BMW K1200RS
03′ MV Agusta F4
03′ Ducati ST3
06′ BMW K1200S
06′ Special Edition Yamaha R1
08′ Ducati 1098S

What is the coolest thing you’ve ever done on a motorcycle?

Everything is cool on a motorcycle…Had lots of adventures… lots of near death experiences.. Too many to waste time on. One interesting experience I had might entertain… I swear it’s true…

Years ago.. when the earth was young .. It was a hot, mid-summer Nashville night and I couldn’t sleep. Decided to take my Kawasaki 750 Turbo (then the fastest bike on the planet) for a midnight ride around town on the interstate loop. In the summer it’s about the only time of day you can ride in Nashville and not melt.

There were almost no cars as I recall and at that time of night . While on the far side of town I was all alone on the interstate except for a lone car waaay up ahead.. As I got closer I could see that it was a Corvette. He’s in the fast lane far to the left of the 4 lane section. As I get a little closer I see that it’s a T-top with the top wide open and on the passenger side of the car I see long blond hair billowing out the right side window and the top. I mean.. looong blond hair. Sweet.

My first thought was.. It‘s gotta be a babe. So what to do?? Plan formulated, I’m going to coolly come up on them…pull up along side.. kinda close.. glance over ..perhaps wink to the obviously beautiful blond who must be riding with the chump.. then light up the turbo and let them see it’s godlike power…Vette guys were always posers anyway.. Who better than I to humiliate him in front of his babe than myself?

So.. I slowly close in on them …I pull up alongside dead even with the car matching their speed … closer than I should have but I wanted to get a good look at the girl…I glance over and… I am about 5ft away and eye to eye with a full grown male lion which instantly roared so loud that it scared me 2 full lanes over and almost off the road.. GEEZUS!!

I did NOT look back as I felt so stupid…just fired up the turbo and was gone.. No idea if the lion was impressed or not.. and No… I was not on drugs that particular night…

[Me: Holy shit!]

If you could ride your bike one more time, one more place, anywhere in the world, where would that be?

Swiss Alps or Sonora Pass in California

If someone handed you a blank check and said buy a motorcycle, what would you buy?

Fortunately I usually buy any bike that I want.. life is good..Hmm.. Probably the Desmodeci Ducati..

Professional


Can you tell the story about how you got involved in your business? What did you do before? What was the inspiration/motivation?

Oddly enough.. my biz came together like a perfect storm.. I was in the printing/publishing biz for 25 years.. hated it so I quit. Made some money as a freelance journalist for a few motorcycle and scuba publications.. Also a photographer for a few years. Loved that but the money wasn’t conducive to the extravagant lifestyle I so richly deserved so I decided to try something different.

Left the country and lived in Guatemala for a while. Wrote for a Guatemala English speaking paper for a year, but that didn’t work out so back to the USA I came without a job and only $1000 in my bank account. What to do? I decided to start a new biz from scratch doing something I loved… So began Pirates Lair Motorcycle Detailing service based out of Nashville, Tennessee. Within a year I not only had the business of virtually every bike shop in the area, but also many country music stars. During this same time, I bought my first BMW.. a 98 K1200RS. Fell in love with it but immediately realized nobody made any accessories for it so I designed some things myself…

At about the EXACT same time, internet chat sites were popping up around the country and I came across www.I-BMW.com A site made up of fellow K1200RS riders. I posted a few pics of my bike (with my custom made accessories) and immediately was flooded with requests for my products and requests for other items… I sold my goodies the best I could out of my garage.

To make the perfect storm complete.. a buddy of mine .. a designated computer geek, suggested I learn HTML so I could build a website to sell my custom BMW products in a more professional way. He offered personal tutelage if I supplied an endless supply of beer. Pabst Blue Ribbon. .. I took him up on it and took to it like a junkie to crack. As it turned out.. all my experience in the printing and publishing industry combined with my knowledge of writing and photography were EXACTLY the knowledge I needed to produce a successful website/business. I couldn’t have scripted it better. The rest is history. Now we are the #1 K1200 accessory site in the universe selling to every country in the world (except Indonesia.)

What products excite you the most?

I’m a big fan of leather suits or jackets and helmets. I’m always looking for a new model or style..I’m a sucker for cool looking riding gear. It’s a curse.

What product do you see on the market that most needs to be redesigned? Or designed?

We manufacture a few backrests for bikes like the ST1300, the FJR1300, and quite a few BMW’s only because Honda, Yamaha, and BMW doesn’t. I’ve always wondered why they don’t as all these bikes are generally two-up machines and virtually every buyer would want a backrest as an option..?? This has always baffled me although it’s good for us as we sell them by the truckload. Liability issues?

Also.. I see motorcycles getting too complex for mortals to work on. The new BMW’s are so complex that you can’t even add accessory lighting to some of them without triggering dash warning lights. If these bikes break down you have no choice but have it towed to a dealer.. Sad. I see the Japanese and Italians slowly sliding down this slope with traction control and hp output devices.. Not good. Sooner or later they’ll be like cars… Nobody but professional mechanics will be able to work on them.

[Me: Agree, agree, agree.]

Who are your typical customers? Demographics? Likes. Dislikes?

Generally between 35-60.. upper middle-class. Lots of professionals and retirees… and oddly enough a large percentage are pilots. Most of our customers are anti-cruiser. Serious riders concerned with safety and serious riding.

When you love your business, what is it you love?

I love sleeping late. and I love sleeping with the boss’s wife. Getting to write off all the rallies and track days I attend on my taxes is just icing on the cake.

When you think going into business was nuts, what drives you nutty?

When biz is good.. which is about 9 months out of the year I find myself working 14 hour days.. Not healthy for the body or soul. However. it’s still better than working 8-10 hours for somebody else. I’m paying my dues now in hope that it’ll pay off in the long run..

What do you see as the biggest challenges facing motorcycling?

Motorcycles are slowly being legislated off the road.. I hear about mandatory speed control devices being discussed in Europe. Horsepower is already limited in one or two countries. Factory programmed GPS units that alert law enforcement that the rider has broken speed laws should be on some bikes within the next 3-4 years. If that doesn’t reek of “big brother” .. I don’t know what does.

In Denver they just passed a law that ALL after market exhausts are illegal. Florida has just passed laws giving motorcyclists $1000 fines for speeding or even improperly mounted license plates. The lone protector of motorcyclists rights is the toothless AMA. Insurance companies are actually banning some bikes from coverage and/or putting them on “scary bike” lists. This does not bode well for street riders when the manufacturers are pouring gas on the fire by pumping out faster and more powerful bikes year after year without suggesting/offering comprehensive training for it’s potential customers. Something needs to be done, yet nobody is doing a damn thing.

IMHO.. sooner or later, street riders will be legislated out of existence…forced off the streets and onto tracks.. Very sad.

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Dec 24

Drive-By Review: TechSpec

By kevin | Gear Reviews

I put TechSpec on all my bikes.  I just don’t see how you can ride a modern performance-oriented bike without the ability to get a solid grip on your tank.  I include sport bikes, naked bikes, sport touring bike, and adventure bikes in this category.  So on it went to my K1200GT.

The material is black synthetic rubber with what the manufacturer calls a “snake skin” pattern.   Super high friction, and yes over time it will scuff up your riding pants.

I didn’t photograph the installation but it’s bog simple.

  • Clean the surface with rubbing alcohol or similar. Clean your hands while you’re at it.
  • Test position the panel.  Assuming you have a pre-cut kit, it’s pretty obvious where it goes.
  • Grab a hair dryer and warm up the surface you’re going to stick the panel on.  It needs to be 70 degrees F at least.  While you’re at it, periodically hit the TechSpec panel to warm it up.
  • When you’re ready, peel half the back off the panel.  This is harder than it seems: mostly you need to make sure you’re peeling the paper backing instead of the adhesive layer.
  • Tack the TechSpec panel to the tank using a corner and be sure it’s where you want it. Work the panel with your fingers until you get close to the remaining paper backing. Peel that and keep pushing the TechSpec onto the tank. I just keep pushing at it with my fingers to make sure it’s 100% attached. 
  • Repeat with the other panels.

That’s really it.  Bone simple.  There are other solutions on the market, but this is by far the best.  I bought mine from Pirate’s Lair.

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Dec 24

Chris Cox on the Virtues of Doing Absolutely Nothing

By kevin | Current Affairs

It’s stunning really.  The signature strategy of the Bush administration is to do victory laps for the purpose of bragging about their failures.  First Cheney admits publicly that he authorized illegal torture (and then that it’s okay for the President to wage thermonuclear war without talking to anyone) and now Chris Cox goes meets with the Washington Post to brag about the fact that he and his agency did absolutely nothing during the worst financial meltdown since the Great Depression. 

During his tenure, the SEC has watched as all the investment banks it oversaw collapsed, were swallowed up or got out of their traditional line of business. The agency, meanwhile, was on the sidelines while the Treasury Department and Federal Reserve worked to bail out the financial sector. And the SEC, by its own admission, failed to detect an alleged $50 billion fraud by Bernard L. Madoff that may be the largest Ponzi scheme in history.

But in his first interview since the Madoff scandal broke, Cox said he was not responsible for the agency’s failure to detect the alleged fraud and that he had responded properly to the broader financial crisis given the information he had. Confronted with a barrage of criticism from lawmakers, former officials and even some of his staff, Cox said he took pride in his measured response to the market turmoil.

“What we have done in this current turmoil is stay calm, which has been our greatest contribution — not being impulsive, not changing the rules willy-nilly, but going through a very professional and orderly process that takes into account unintended consequences and gives ample notice to market participants,” Cox said. This caution, he added, “has really been a signal achievement for the SEC.”

Taking a swipe at the shifting response of the Treasury and Fed in addressing the financial crisis, he said: “When these gale-force winds hit our markets, there were panicked cries to change any and every rule of the marketplace: ‘Let’s try this. Let’s try that.’ What was needed was a steady hand.”

His only regret?

In a 90-minute conversation in his 10th-floor corner office last week, Cox said the SEC’s emphasis on enforcement is as strong as ever. “We’ve done everything we can during the last several years in the agency to make sure that people understand there’s a strong market cop on the beat,” he said.

“That’s why Madoff is such a big asterisk,” he added. “The case is very troubling for that reason. It’s what the SEC’s good at. And it’s inexplicable.”

Um, err, so that’s why you gutted the inspection and enforcement division and spent all your time on deregulation? Please Santa, bring January 20th a month early.

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Dec 22

Drive-By Review: Bags Connection Engage Bag Installation

By kevin | Gear Reviews

I’ve tried most forms of tank bags . . . this was my first go at the very clever ring-mounted “Engage” bag by Bags Connection (bought mine from Pirate’s Lair).  For those not familiar, the bag itself attached to the bike via a plastic horseshoe shaped ring that joins up with a mate that’s attached to the ring around the fuel door.  The advantages?

  • The bag doesn’t touch the tank, sparing the paint all manner of abuse.
  • The bad comes on and off, literally, with a snap.  No more fuss and bother.  Off. On.

Here’s the step-by-step installation on my K1200GT.

Start by removing the screws holding the filler door to the tank.  Don’t worry, there’s nothing that will fall through.  Just back them out.

You only want to take out half of them, which half will be obvious when you hold the mounting ring up against your tank.


The ring that attaches to the tank looks just like a horseshoe.  It’s made of plastic (strong looking stuff).  The trim ring is metal. 


It’s not clear to me that you need the metal ring, but I mounted it.  The kit comes with screws of two lengths, so use the long ones if you use the trim ring.


Here’s what it looks like mounted (above too) with the mated part you’ll attach to the bottom of your bag.


And again.  The spring-loaded pull pin at the top is the key to looking the bag in place.


This is the tricky part.  Place the bag on top of the mated up connectors.  Move the bag north and south to get it where you want it. 


I wanted to be sure to clear my Zumo, so I moved it back from full forward about an inch.  The way to mark this is by sliding a piece of masking tape up under the bag while it’s in place. It’s a pain and you’ll need to fiddle and experiment a little until you commit to drilling the four holes you’ll need to screw the bracket to the bag.


Here’s the bag in place from my view in the saddle.

I’ll do a ride report, but for now I can say with confidence . . .

The installation isn’t difficult. Whatever time it takes you you’ll get back on your first long ride not having to fiddle the bag on and off every time you stop for gas.

  • The bag itself is very clever, well-thought out, and beautifully made.
  • At first I thought it was too small.  Then I decided I should just carry less stuff.
  • If for some reason I want to carry more stuff, there are lots of other bags you can buy that mount up to the same ring.  Cool.
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Dec 22

Tour Italy With Dynamic Ducati Driving

By kevin | Rants and Raves

I met a lovely lady named Amy at the recent Seattle Motorcycle Show who was handing out cards for Dynamic Ducati Driving. She has since sent me a note . . .

My husband and I had the opportunity to experience Dynamic Ducati Driving in May / June 2008. We rode 2 days through the breath taking Dolomites, a day trip to scenic Lake Garda, and 3 days in the Tuscany region which included a tour through the Ducati Museum/Factory in Bologna, Borgo Panigale as well as a tour of the Ferrari Museum/Factory in Bologna. We rode the world famous “Futa Pass” where Ducati test rides most of there new bikes through the many twisties up and down the perfectly paved pass. The Italian roads are truly a riders dream. I’m not sure there is a straight road in the entire country.

We were also fortunate enough to be there the week before the Mugello Moto GP in Tuscany, so of course we had to extend our tour a few more days so we were able to attend the race. WOW, what a thrill to be at a Moto GP in Italy. We sat in the Ducati Grandstands where everyone was issued an official Ducati Red Moto GP T-Shirt and hat. We cheered on Ducati and swayed with the Italians in the Ducati “sea of red” grandstands. Memories we’ll hold for a lifetime.

Remember if a spouse, friend or partner is interested in coming to Italy and they are not riders, that shouldn’t be a problem. As long as they are willing to go along on the tour, in most cases they should be able to make arrangements to accommodate them with the group.

Please keep in mind that every tour is a little different as far as where you go depending on the weather, time of year, day of the week and tour package. This email is to give you a little taste of what’s available.

Something to put on your list! For more information, contact . . .

Amy & Mark Morris
ajmorris@nvinet.com
509-476-2266

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