Ben's grandfather had this old flathead 45. He said the frame and motor were left overs from WWII and that he had put road trim from the time on it instead of the war gear.
Ben told him that I had ridden dirt bikes a bit. Gramps decided I should give it a go. I'm pretty sure something was lost in translation....
Foot clutch, short legs, and a bike that weighed over twice as much as any of the dirt bikes I had ridden. How could I say no?
It's fun to have photos of your self trying to look tough when your scared as shit. Slowly eased the clutch pedal back, the torque was too much, I took off, almost hit a wooden table and laid it down. In my state of panic I tried to pick the old flatty up on my own, and just my luck, the only french words I was good at remembering ("I'm Sorry") decided to hide in the depths of my skull, when I really needed to remember them. I turned around to see Ben's grandpa walking over laughing at me... and to my relief the bike was fine, so his laughter got louder. Sweet Sweet laughter! The bike had two hand breaks to offset the difficulty of a foot clutch while stopped on hills. The pro and Paix showing me how it's done. Hopefully one day, I'll find my self back on that little french farm.
A friend of mine is letting me barrow her scanner for a bit. I only shoot maybe two rolls of print or slide film a year. Before I turned 18, it was all I shot. Dark rooms are fun. Focusing is easy.
Yes, scanning a bunch of photos from boxes in boxes. Lots of good times and good people. Holding a nice matte print in your hand, is lost on some people. Oh well.
Camping in my old truck, south of Santa Cruz, Calif. Ben and Robbie. Right out of high school. Walking the streets of Voiron, France. 18 years old. Vadim and Mat. One of these young gents in this photo has more pictures of his ass floating around then his face. Polar Bear! Might be busy the next few weeks, but hopefully I'll get a few sets and stories up.
Been putting this together for too long. Just something for fun, keep the spirit of a kid in you no matter how old you get and don't take yourself too serious.
I'll stop preaching now.
The long and winding road. Race Only I've really only ridden it around the block with no breaks or pedals and went to the taco shop once.
Might as well test it out by taking it on a 40 mile trip around San Diego.
There were about twelve of us that all went. Eleven made it back. Two stroke ain't no Joke!
Here's some of those other bikes. Tough as shit, biker gang photo op. Lined up. Southern California in December is a hell I would wish on no man, women, or child.
Utterly untollerable. I had to shovel the sunshine out of my driveway just to get out of my house today. Look how miserable I look.
But as is the case with much of my goings on, I broke mere miles from home. Came to a skid stop and the break arm twisted and rapped around the frame, bending it. Hopefully it's fixable and I can reenforce it a bit. You break it you buy it. Guess I'm not selling it anymore. Sitting in greener pastures. Where bikes of all kinds go to rest. Travis's back yard. (I'll get you for the motor don't worry!) Thanks to my dad for snagging the frame as well!
You guys are breaking my bloody heart. Get mean. play chippy. What would Ricci Do?
This guy sits behind my dad at the games. Ducks Suck.
I'm sure you hated that... if I've painted your kettle teflon then you might enjoy this. This one may throw you off at first, the poor quality and dismal audio, but he (to use a southern california word) shreeeeeeaaaadddddddsssss. Mix, canada, country, steel guitar, trains, and countryjam and your bidding is as good as done.
Sure, you hated that too... but you got to hear some guy with a heavy canadian acsent say,
So sit down. And waste time. Who pays for cable anymore?
Lets start with the basics. (p.s "how it's made" is the antiques road show of the late 2000's, tens, tweens. Whatever it's called. It's always on at the place I eat PHO at. And I will watch it till my eyes bleed.) Knowledge is power. Fight the power.
Iconic as it gets. This is the gum that gets stuck to your shoe; Brain edition.
Hit's the heart rather strong as well.
The newer generation of the steel guitar sound... "Friends of Dean Martinez" Look them up.
Same chit. Song sucks I know.
So your hooked, you want one. No need to sell your fixed gear or custom 70's van. One man's trash is another man's waste of time.
A personal favorite of mine. Sweet Sweet Tammy.
Webster Dictionary Definition:
I save the best for last. The pimp magic don juan was known for saying "green is for the money, gold is for the honey....my main!" Gold Suit, CHECK. Green Hat, CHECK. Pinky Ring, CHECK! TIME TO BLOWN YOUR MIND. I'M CALLINGYOU OUT MR. J. GARCIA!
So now picture that was just your large fry. And the monopoly game is in full swing.
Instant win Bitches! Free mcflurry, and a trip to the 8th demention. A place where a beardless, ponytail-less, sober, turtle neck wearing Willie Nelson lives and thrive.
Went to the red fox room on el cajon blvd in san diego for my birthday. If you like dark, booth filled cheep steak houses, with strong drinks, and old people, then this is your spot. Sweet little bar too. Wait, never mind. This place sucks. Don't go there. Stay away. You wouldn't like it. Cole obviously hasn't realized that prop 19 didn't pass.
At an asian bookstore in san jose i picked up these gems. It's a shame that so many bookstores and magazine shops are dropping like flies, but I guess something as niche as this is sure to have a strong foothold in the area. Sloppy Sin's neighbor was going to throw this away. He saved it and I'm sure one day he's going to paint a little mod kid ridding that beast like a scooter, as he tries to evade a pack of angry half wolf half custom 70's van gangs. Were having dog meat for thanksgiving. Went to see the Sharks with my dad while I was in Man Jose this weekend. Football sucks.
Now with 20% more size and 40% less of the focus you love!
No really, bigger then normal. So do whatever the hell you want with the top photo.
On the side cover of my bike, for the past couple years in sharpie marker, continually retraced, reads "Commodore Mathew C. Perry and his Black Steam Ships"
When I first got this bike, it hadn't been registered since 1991 (and most likely not started since then either). Sloppy Sin helped me get it running again, and I rode it in it's stock glory for a few months to work and around Ventura. Poor piston rings and sitting for years, made it pump black smoke out the exhaust and in 4th gear oil would come out of the head breather, much like a steam ship. Trust me, it was a lot of smoke!
Here's where Mr. Perry found his way onto my "Black Steam Ship". Commodore Perry was the head honcho in charge of the large fleet of American Ships, which in essence, forced the Japanese to open up trade to the United States. At the time only the Dutch and Chinese were allowed trade with Japan. I'm sure it went something like this,
"Soooo.... ya, we know you guys are a peaceful nation, and have beautiful traditions and a way of life so simple, efficient, clean and well designed it's really hard to rap our head around. And ya that's cool, do what you want, it works. I've been actually thinking about picking up a pair of those wooden sandals you guys have for Mrs. Perry. But anyway, you got cool shit, and we want in. I mean you trade with the dutch. Their flag is all orange. How boring. We want in on that shit. I don't even really know what you have, but we're America and this is the space race...I mean imperialism, I mean were just average guy's.... so you should trade with us. Or well blow you up with our magical bang bang bang thing. So I'm going to let you guys talk it over, me and my crew is going to go down and see what the Taiwan strip joints are like and well be back in a bit with more of your new friends who love flexing that second amendment thing we got in the states. Boys lets roll, and we out!" By forcing Trade with America, Matthew C. Perry essentially started the modernization of Japan. (Trust me it wasn't Tom Cruise in that one movie) With modernization, comes technology. And with technology we have modern forms of transportation like cars, guns, and motorcycles.
In the span of 100 years Japan would have a full scale Navy and be a major player in WWII.
In Honda CB77 Superhawks of the 60's were some of the most technological bikes of the time. All this development in such short time, would never had happen were it not for the goofy looking man below and his black steam ships.
"The term "Black Ships", in Japan, would later come to symbolise a threat imposed by Western technology."
Below is the flag flown on Perry's ship the first time the black steam ships entered Japanese harbors. Flown from Annapolis, Md to the surrender ceremonies at the end of WWII.
You can form your own impression of what the United States was implying with the gesture, but to me it's fairly obvious. Long story Short:
My bike smoked really bad. Superior Japanese Technology. Thanks for being a jerk Commodore Perry.
It looks like some guy walking in circles, but this is a highly choreographed dolly shot. Smooth as butter. I'm pushing, pulling focus, and picking up and laying down track behind and in front of the camera all in one. I'm just that good.
Went to the Bean Bandits reunion and memorial for Joaquin Arnett on Saturday. The nicest, people, most amazing hospitality, and one of the few groups of guys still pushing, everything in the same way they have for 60 years.
A friend told me this yesterday and I can't think of a better way to sum up these men and their cars....
"...when shitty circumstances start pilling up it's definitely a test of will and strength. The only thing that gets me past it is clear understanding, strength of will, and decisive, unapologetic action."
Thanks for the words holmes.... your checks in the mail.
I took this photo when I was 21 years of age. I turn 25 in a little over two weeks. That makes my head hurt. The 40 had just won the juke bomber award or something on it's maiden voyage up to the Bay Area for the Asphalt Invitational (Rip). A lot of change, to a lot of different things in this photo. The 40 ford has had the cosmetic once over, and now is starting to get back to faded paint. The roadster pick-up, "chief" is getting fitted for a fur coat and pimp chalice, and Rick Rojas of Rojas Speed and Style in Santa Barbara, Calif. (behind the 40) just had his first son this morning.
I've been out of Campbell, Calif. , my home for almost 19 years, a total of 6 years now. It's not that crazy to most, (especially, those of my friends who had no choice but to leave their birth places) but there is much to be explored, and far too much to learn.
Working on a dock of the bay. Just not that bay. G Street Pier. San Diego, Calif. I just wanna fish brrrrooooo. Catch me some lobbies. Two blocks from the shop. Don't hear any voices on "Commodore Mathew C. Perry and his Black Steam Ships"
Today is the 21st anniversary of the LomaPrieta earthquake. I was a month away from four years old. My mom has just come to get me after work. I remember bits and pieces of the ordeal. Another kid not wanting to get off the swing set. me under the table and people in the doorway. When we got home I remember alot of broken plates, and my parents cleaning it up by candle light. We were actually closer to the epicenter then San Fransisco by about 45 miles, but SF is built on ground that is much less stable. Especially down by the water.