The Coyote's Ramblings - 2006C
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7/10/06
So you thought the Ol' Coyote had disappeared, did you?  Well, in a sense, you were right. Those of you who know me personally may have finally figured out, over the years that I do that from time to time, both in real life and here, in The Den.  Sometimes, it's a period of introspection...of self-review...to figure out who the hell I am and what am I doing, and sometimes it's just a touch of depression.  I've struggled, no, dealt, with it much of my adult life and, sometimes, you might hear me refer to the Beast on my back.  As best I can recall, there've only been a couple of times it was truely debilitating and, interestingly enough, there was a divorce involved each time.  Hmmmm?
 
I can't always tell what  tends to trigger the episodes but I have figured out some of them.. The most common is when something is going badly for someone I care about..and there's nothing I can do to help and I just get into this circular loop and can't seem to break out of it.  So why am I rambling on about this when you'd rather read amusing anecdotes or juicy gossip?
 
Well, maybe it's just because I'm a self-absorbed old fart, or maybe...you or someone you know and love is caught in one of these loops and can't seem to break free of it.  Sometimes, at least for me, you gotta get up from the pity-party and tell someone how you feel.  I've found that just expressing it in terms you would use with another person is enough to start to break that loop.  Still there?  Dang, you're hard up for reading matter.
7/16/06
Ever have one of those days when all your best intentions just keep getting thwarted?  Well, yesterday came up in spades.  There was a last-minute Patriot Guard mission for a funeral in FWB, the funeral home being on Racetrack Road.  I figured no more than an hour or so travel time, so I gave myself two hours to be on the safe side.  So, what happens but we get our long-awaited downpour just before I'm ready to go.  The Weather Channel radar is showing our standard summer pop-ups, so I figure the usual half-hour and I'm good to go.
 
Right on schedule, the sun pops out and starts the asphalt sauna, so I hit the road with what I figure is still a comfortable cushion.  I'm riding Main and then Bayfront, more concerned with the crazies in my immediate vicinity than way down the road when I get to the light just east of Gulf Power.  Only then do I glance over at the bay bridge...and see a three+mile parking lot!  Damn, I forgot the Blue Angel show at the beach.  Three light changes later, I get through the gridlock at the light, and a mere 12 minutes later, make the left onto 17th Avenue, knowing that once I hit the Interstate, I can boom over to 87 and still make the schedule.
 
Duh, as I'm on Scenic, approaching the Dairy Queen, I remember that there's no east-bound ramp since Ivan.  Realizing how my decision-making on the fly has revealed some cracks in the process, I pull in and park it.  Okay, the brain says, there are only a couple of options left here:  continue on Scenic Hwy, through Pace and Milton, and down to the interstate again, or backtrack to the Davis interchange in pick up I-10, grates be damned!  The latter, I think, will be the only way to make it in time, so it's back on the road to the west-bound ramp and hit it!
 
Wrong, 89-octane breath!  After I merged with the west-bound suicide drivers and got with the flow, I looked to the left and the east-bound side is stopped.  Not slow...stopped!  Avoiding being run over by a black Louisiana-tagged Escalade, I kept watching the other lane and when I saw it was bumper-to-bumper as far back as Davis Hwy.  Okay, the highway gods are telling me something.  I hope enough of the PGR's not west of P'cola made it.  Oh yeah, the beer was cold and the band rocking at Gene's last night.  Ride safe!
7/20/06
Surprised you, didn't I; didn't think I'd be back so soon!  It could be because I just came back from Seville Square from a good concert and I'm in a good mood.  Couple of things have come up and I thought I'd fill you in.  Yes, Fat Boys has been sold and no, the new owner isn't a pimp from New York.  JT's the manager and I don't think you'd find anyone further from that description.  He's in the process of cleaning the place up and trying to get it fully functional.  It's still a biker bar, and everyone is welcome regardless of what you're flying, but leave your differences at the door.
 
The other thing on his agenda is an item near and dear to my heart as well as a lot of other folks...WHEN HE CAN GET TO IT...he's going to put up a real flagpole and fly the flags with respect, instead of wrapped around that pine tree.  Give him time, and some cooperation, and I think we'll all enjoy going there again.  There's a lot to do and there's not enough of him.
 
The other thing is my 45th high school reunion is coming next month, on the 12th of August..  Just like 5 years ago, the theme is a 50's & 60's dance, so I propose to arrive as "the leader of the pack".  Some of you might remember when I did this for my 40th reunion and it was a lot of fun.  Sorry I can't offer any rewards or prizes for this, but if you'll do it for the Ol' Coyote, I'd sure appreciate it.  The reunion is at American Legion #33, near Barrancas and Garden and I'll post it on the "Happenings" page when it get firmed up.  Now here's the question: Where would you like to start it from?  LAst time was from the Wall South, but I'm open to suggestions. Just e-mail me if you have any other ideas.  That's only about 3 weeks, so don't dilly-dally.
7/24/06
Okay, so life is moving faster, now.  First, since I haven't heard from anyone yet, I'm making the decision about my short "Leader of the Pack" run on August 12.  We'll leave at 7PM from the Wall South and ride to American Legion 33, just off Barrancas.  I figure that's the best route for an unauthorized parade and short enough we probably won't get hassled by Pensacola's finest.  I wish I could invite y'all in but I could only afford the $40 a head for me.  Besides, there'll be a bunch of old folks in there!
 
The other piece of news is that I may not be retired much longer.  The Motorcycle Emporium may be reopening soon, in a new location.  This one may even have a fully paved parking lot and air conditioning (I swoon).  We'll find out in the days ahead if is one of those offers I just can't refuse and if it will truly take bloom.  Stay tuned, boys and girls.  Did I mention it's raining!
8/1/06
..another month down the tubes, and it's STILL hot; C'mon, October!  After the Fairfield Sonic ride-in tonight, I decided to drop in on the inaugural 2 Wheel Tuesday at Club Dimension.  For those of you who don't know where it's at, it's one block behind the McDonalds on Fairfield, near Pace Blvd.  I'm not sure what I expected, but it wasn't nearly 50 bikes, from full-blown Harley dressers to Gold Wings and sport bikes.
 
Lessee, American Legion Riders, Gulf Coast Dragons, Southern Cruisers, Nightcrawlers, ABATE and Kreeperz(no, I can't figure out how to turn the first "K" around) were among the clubs and organizations I saw displayed, as well as a bunch of non-affiliated riders.  The best part was that the air conditioning AND the beer was COLD!  On the minus side, by the time I got there almost all the food from Rodger BBQ was gone, except for the one spoonful of baked beans that Curtis left me...and it was delicious.  I'll get ther earlier next Tuesday.
 
Y'all ride safe and stay hydrated if you're riding during the day.  I just can't do it.
8/6/06
I guess I need to burst the bubble on my unretiring so I don't get any more questions about it.  Vic is going to reopen Motorcycle Emporium as soon as the Department of Agriculture issues his repair facility license/certication/whatever, but I won't be working with him.  After the initial rush, I realized that it just wouldn't work with all the other stuff I have going on in my life.  I'll let you know for certain when he will open.
 
I'm still looking forward to my reunion ride on Saturday.  I just wonder if I'll still be able to do it in another 5 years for my 50th reunion.  Hell, I never really thought ther'd be a 45th reunion; it's one of those "if I knew I was gonna live this long, I'da taken better care of myself" situations!
 
With all this daytime heat, most of my riding has been in the evenings.  I'm really looking forward to seeing how many folks show up on Tuesday evening at Club Dimension.  I know I'll get there earlier this time so I won't lose out on the food.  Til next time ride safe and sober.
8/15/06
Since I haven't been around anybody in a couple of days, it wouldn't matter to you, but I fnally took a shower today.  That's not as bad as it sounds since I also haven't had air conditioning in the house since Sunday afternoon.  You know that little bearing-whine sound?  Well, I started detecting SOMETHING around Saturday afternoon, but it wasn't until Sunday morning that I figured out what it was.  Now, I know nothing about central air conditioning, so I wasn't about to open up a metal box with wires and tubing and such going into it but, when I heard a cycle start to cut in that evening and heard a motor strining to turn, I knew I was in trouble.  I got to the off switch in a hurry, and started sweating(literally) the cost of a service call.
 
As it turns out, I got pretty good turn-around time and the tech got here late this morning.  Guess what; with an inside temperature of 93, we turned it back on...and it worked...without whine!  Now, I know a bearing whine when I hear it, and the sticking just confirmed it for me, so I've ordered another fan unit.  The lead time is anywherre from 1 to 10 days, depending what warehouse has one available.  In the meantime, the temp is only back down to 83 and I can hear the beginnings of that whine again.  At least the tech was good enough to show me where to get in and hand-spin the fan if it cyles onto that bad spot again.
 
Oh, riding stuff?  Okay, last Tueday was kinda light at Club Dimension, due to the earlier rain, I suppose, but I did get there early enough for the barbeque.  EXCELLENT!  After the usual hanging around and BS'ing, some of the sport bike boys wanted to do a little street racing, one on one, and it was decided to go over to Hollywood, beside Brownsville Middle School.  A bunch of us grown-up bikers went along to spectate, and we had just parked alongside the street when one of the sporty dudes came riding back with the news that there were 5 Escambia deputies parked on the school grounds.  Damn, I felt like I was 19 again, as we scattered in all directions before they came after us!  Cool!
 
The reunion ride was a tad thin as just Bob, Pat and Bill showed up to ride with me but, on the other hand, I think this may be my last reunion.  I may reconsider in another 5 years, but that's a long time off.  I guess I never really belonged in that crowd then, and I sure as hell don't now.
 
Y'all take care and ride safe, y'hear.
8/20/06
Enough, already, with the heat!  Sometime tomorrow, between 8 and 5 (how's THAT for precise scheduling?) the tech will be here to install my new fan and I'll have air conditioning again.  Of course, with the inside temp at 90+, it may take a while and burn out the new fan, as well.  We'll see!
 
Tuesday evening's turn out at Club Dimension was a lot bigger than last week's, even if that squall line did cut the evening short for some, myself excluded.  The proportion of cruisers to sportbikes is increasing, and we had them well outnumbered.  The main trouble with that is, though, that the barbeque runs out faster.  Hmmm, just have to get there earlier, I guess.
 
I'm gonna have to study the paper more closely for my Thursday Evenings in Old Seville Square, too.  I'm sure there's a bunch of country music fans out there, but The Sawmill Band ran me off rather quickly.  That, too, was just as well as Fat Boys now have their Bike Night on Thursday, although got what little I drink, dollar longnecks are kinda wasted.
 
On Friday and Saturday, I actually did an imitation of work again, helping Vic input his inventory figures into the computer so he can actually produce a bill when he opens next week.  Since I'm working from his worksheets I can speak with authority; you don't want to have to decipher a bill in his handwriting.
 
Well, enough drivel for tonight; between no AC and a toothache, I've had it for one day.  Y'all stay safe and ride carefully...and sober!
8/27/06
Hmmm, why does Labor Day weekend sound like it might be a tad windy and wet?  Does Ernesto come to mind?  Makes you wonder if there'll be a Ramblings edition next week.
 
Now, to follow up on the other stuff; the toothache turned out to be two abcessed teeth so I've been doing the antibiotic thing this week...AND the air conditioner was fixed on Monday!  Beyond that, it's been a normal week.  I've been helping Vic with setting up his inventory for the new Motorcycle Emporium, which he's planning on opening September 9th.  No, I'm not WORKING for him...just helping a friend.
 
There was a pretty good turn out on Tuesday at Club Dimension, but the usual barbeque has deteriorated to ham sandwiches.  The beer was still cold, though.  I didn't go out again until Friday but I did discover something interesting: the old Sleepy Hollow on Jackson Street, near 57th, is now owned by one of our own.  As I was going in, Reb Tatum pulled up and I found out he had bought the bar from Hub Stacy a few months ago.  I asked him why the name was now "Theresa's Sleepy Hollow" and he told me he had named it in honor of the long-time manager and, besides, he preferred not everybody knew who owned it.  Tough, Reb, the cat's out of the bag now.  Besides, we couldn't let a long-time ABATE member go unrecognized.  Stop by and say HI sometime; they serve beer and mixed drinks and he's good people.
 
After this morning's rain cleared out, I had planned on riding over to Cocodries, but it felt like a sauna and I'm still not up to this heat, so the hell with it.  Maybe if this hurricane misses us, I'll ride in the daytime next weekend.  Y'all take care and stay safe.
9/5/06
...a few days and miles later, he sez...  Lessee, now...I finally washed the scoot last week and, as always, I took my handlebar clock out of the bracket.  When I was through, and the scoot dry, I thought I put it securely back, "thought" being the operative word here..  When I got out onto Mobile Hwy, I hit a pretty good bump...and watched the watch sail out of the bracket and behind me.  In the mirror, I could see at least two shiny spots glisten at me just before a truck tire ran over them.  Oops!  I went back over to PMS, where I bought it, and asked if I could buy just a replacement clock insert.  I was told they didn't know but they'd get in touch with the distributor and find out.  I stopped by the next day and was told they never got back to him.  Well, I went home that evening and found the folks on the net. Glorioskies!, their website said they had a three year warranty "..even if you lost it".  Yipee, I e-mailed them, explaining what happened, waited for what I expected to ne a long runaround, send receipt, etc.  The next morning was a nice e-mail saying they dropped the new clock in the mail and I should have it in a few days...and it arrived this morning.  I told Vic, and he's going to check with them about becoming a dealer.  Good deal, folks!
 
On Saturday evening, I was the only bike to show up for the new Arby's Bike Night on Mobile Hwy.  They're gonna be offering 2 for 1 specials, but I wound up with a couple of free combo's just for showing up.  You never know!
 
The rest of the Labor Day weekend was just spent running about 300 miles on the odometer.  Part of the running around brought me to The Wharf, over in Orange Beach.  I know they've been booking dome pretty good names for the Amphitheater there, but after seeing it, I'm not sure I'm going to be attending any events.  It's outdoors, near the intercoastal, and just looks like sweat and mosquitoes to me.  You make up your own mind.
 
Finally made it to Cocodries, too.  Another too hot without enough shade thing; maybe it'll be better in the Fall.  Damn, I sound like I'm getting old and grumpy.  Could be.  Well, enough grousing for one week.  Y'all take care & ride safe.
9/12/06
Y'know, sometimes it take a lot of effort to discover what you knew all along.  After a year of riding with these glasses, I finally got enough pits and scratches in them to decide I wanted to see again.  Having seen all these various and sundry ads for deals on optics, today I decided to ride around, with my prescription, and do some comparison shopping.  Now, the past few glasses changes, I've just used WalMart's optical department over here on Mobile Highway since that's the closest to my house, so that's where I established my base-line.  I won't risk defaming the other places I went today beyond saying I checked out a "50% off",  a "buy one, get one", and a "nobody beats our prices" place.  When all was said and done, and the gas consumed, Wally World still came in around $30 under the closest competitor.  The new glasses should be in by this weekend.
 
Is everyone enjoying the end of our drought?  My lawn is loving it, but but getting caught 3 times in 2 days is pushing it for me.  Okay, so I was playing rain tag, and you can't win 'em all, but it is tougher at night with headlights flaring off the drops on my glasses.  I suppose that's why there weren't any bikes at the Fairfield Sonic OR Club Dimension tonight.  On Sunday, though, it was funny that the only place I got wet was on the Three Mile Bridge, both coming and going.  I did get in a couple of stops I'd never made before, though; the Sonic on Sorrento is now open, and I had my first beer at Panama Mac's.  Probably won't be my last.
 
Okay, boys and girls, that's it for now.  Take care and ride safe, and start thinking about the Bears for Bears Run in October; it's closer than you think.
9/24/06
Yes, I'm still here.  No, I haven't given up my Ramblings; I just haven't had anything to say.  No, I didn't go to Thunder Beach.  Get your stuffed animals ready for the Bears for Bears Run next weekend.  Later..........