The Coyote's Ramblings - 2006D
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10/3/06
I've come to the conclusion that most authors must bow to the restrictions of their literary medium to make all their characters' life-changing events sudden and dramatic.  Of course they have to; otherwise, books would take a lifetime to read and we'd all be bored out of our gourds and never read another one.  Tough, economically,  for the publishing industry!  Real life, however, is tougher on the individual...or easier, depending on your viewpoint.  Life is insidious, usually making miniscule changes over a much longer span, giving us time to mentally adjust to each one before imposing another.
 
Friends come and go, jobs and careers as well, affiliations change, the body wears down and out and all of a sudden you ask yourself, "How did I get here?", "here" being more a state of metaphysical being rather than a location.  Yes, this is one of those times when you're asking yourself whether the ol' Coyote has gone off the deep end.  Nah! This is one of those times when I didn't have anything to say, but said it anyway.
10/29/06
Egad, I hadn't realized how long it had been since I checked in here.  I still really don't have anything to say of a substantive nature, but I'm punching keys anyway.  I've been riding regularly, enough that I need new tires (which should be in at Vic's by Monday or Tuesday), and I'm coming up on my 12K service.  It's kind of funny that one of the triggers for my getting the new scoot last year was I was tired of doing maintenance, but after letting the dealership do the last two, I want to do my own again.  Of course, changing the rear drive fluid on a shaft drive beats the hell out of chain adjustment and lube every 400-500 miles any day.
 
I only saw one other person I knew there, but if you missed the Jimmy Van Zant concert at the fair, you blew it.  It was one kick-ass show.  I think I've mentioned in prior years' ramblings that most of my high expectations were dashed by some of these acts, but this year was the exception.  The corn dogs were okay but the funnel cakes were doughy, though.  It was kind of fun walking around the midway and looking at all the exotic animals, although the livestock exhibits were sort of sparse.
 
Okay, I've rambled enough for this session; if I keep going, I'll even tell you about the three new teeth in my lower and even you couldn't take that.  Take care and ride safe.
 
11/2/06
Okay, the "keeping it quiet" part has been lifted from me so now I can get the straight scoop to you.  My long-time partner in mischief (until he found Shane and got married), Kawasaki Pat Hoffman, was involved in an industrial accident in Louisiana a few weeks ago.  Shane asked me to keep the notification to a minimum until we knew more...and now, the news is good!
 
Pat was working there to help restore the telephone switching capacity, which involved great banks of switching equipment and, in the process, a steel rack fell over on him.  In addition to three broken ribs, punctured lung, broken shoulder and severe head lacerations, he had some spinal injuries.  The really good news that, as of now, it doesn't look as though spinal surgery is going to be needed.  The blow to the head, however, did not slow down his speech so he is just as hard to understand now as before the accident.
 
I finally got to see him last night as he has been transferred to West Florida Rehab(room 1014), and he's just as ugly as ever so don't expect medical miracles.  He expects to be there about three weeks, according to his torturers...er, therapists... and don't come to visit before 5:30 or 6 in the evening because they're keeping his busy all day.  Damn, it's good to see my Bro home!
11/4/06
Some of you loyal (though misguided) long-term followers of these ramblings may have noted accounts of my encounters from time to time with members of the feminine persuasion.  Some of these accounts may seem complete, while others seem to start and go nowhere, which was usually the result of bad outcomes not reported herein in order to avoid embarrasment to myself and/or the other party.  Needless to say, my road name, Coyote, was not bestowed upon me for my resemblence to the ubiquitous canine urban scavenger but rather, for the similarites of some of my adventures to those of Acme Company's best customer.
 
So what does this overly-long recap have to do with the price of U.S.-produced trade goods in the People's Republic of China, you ask?  Well, for some weeks, I have been exchanging e-mails with a lady in the Ft Walton Beach area (LFW) but we'd never quite come to an agreement on meeting.  I have to admit the major fault was mine, having remembered various disasterous meetings in the past.  Finally, said lady sent an e-mail relating, if I recall correctly, the following situation: she had a male business acquaintance (MBA) from the Pensacola area who asked a friend of said lady (FSL)to come to Pensacola for dinner and after-dinner entertainment.  This friend desired that her friend, my correspondant, accompany her. In order to balance things out, I was invited to accompany them.  Cool, and relatively straightforward.
 
Then comes the curve ball!  Shortly before said arranged Friday evening comes the e-mail announcing that MBA is called out of state for family business.  LFW proposes that we not abandon our plans and that she, FSL and I go out.  Being the gentleman that I am, I agreed but felt, based on my sorry experience, another Wile Coyote moment coming on!  Acting in desperation, I asked a couple of friends to drop by Gene's Lounge to check and see if I needed rescuing.
 
As it turned out, both rescuers failed to show, for good reason, I'm certain, but were unneeded as it turned out to be a great evening.  Thank you, ladies... both those who showed as well as those who didn't.  For once, the Coyote Curse failed but, don't worry, loyal readers... I have no doubt it's alive and well.  Ride safe!
11/13/06
Good morning, Loyal Readers (see, you now rate captalization as befits your great status in my mind).  In order to avoid leaving you in the dark, as I have done too often in the past, here's what's up.  Despite the bright beginnings last noted in my ramblings, alas, the chemistry just wasn't there.  Believe me, I gave it my best shot but the failings were mine.  She's a lovely, lively and interesting lady and I wish her the best.  I guess it's just not my time...yet!
 
In the good news category, Kawasaki Pat is now released from the hospital AND rehab, and is home in the bosom of his family (I've always liked that phrase).  The doc's have done all they can and it's just up to time to do the rest of the healng.  They gave him six months or so but I'm betting he's going to beat their estimates since I don't think they truely understand bikers.  You'll see what I mean when he shows up at the ABATE meeting next Sunday.
 
I've got new rubber on the scoot and doing my best to wear it down again.  After the old CB750's rate of wearing the rear down within 8K, I've been most pleased with the 11.5K I got out of the VTX.  I'll bet I could get even better than that if it wasn't so much fun to leave everyone at the light!....all within obeying the letter of the law, of course..ahem.
 
Speaking of which, it's time to close this edition, get out on the highway, and take it to the limit one more time!  Ride safe and seeya soon.
11/27/06
First of all, it's good to be back on-line.  I suppose I'm the only one who knew I was off for a day or so, but it bugged the hell out of me...and I did it to myself!  I thought it might be a good idea to go out and see if there was an updated driver for my modem but, somehow, I convinced my machine that I had a new modem, so it used the generic Windows driver.  All I knew at the time was that everytime I would boot up this machine, it would get as far as loading XP, McAfee, and my power management software and then tell me it had encountered a problem, bo blank, and reboot.  Arrgggh!!!  I messed with it most of Sunday (between rides..what great weather) and then just waited, somewhat impatiently for Monday morning to arrive, and Technologies for Tomorrow to open.  They've sold me my last two systems, building this one, and are good guys to talk with.  Particularly, they refrained from telling me what a damned fool I was for messing around with something I didn't need to.  Anyway, I brought the CPU in and they had it up running while I browsed around Book A Million next door....and for less than $30!
 
Other than that, it's just been riding.  A couple of my favorite stops are checking the progress on the I-10 bridge from the Dairy Queen on Scenic (who makes a most excellent chocolate malt), and the new park going on the end of Palafox Pier.  It still amazes me how FAST that bridge is going up, and how soon we will get rid of that steel grating eastbound.  The park is more a nostalgia thing; I've been driving down there for 47 years and I miss parking at the end and just cooling it.  Watch it, old fart mode cutting in!  Enough of this for now.  Y'all take care, ride safe, and I'll seeya at the ABATE toy run on the 3d.
12/7/06
Y'know, I really have no idea where the time went since I was last on here.  There was last Sunday's ABATE toy ride of course but, other than that, I can't really think of a thing worth noting.  Well, I did use the septic tank treatment the first of the month but that's not very biker-related... unless you want to clain that I'm full of it!  Looking back on some of my past entries, maybe this is just a blessing of peace and quiet?
 
I have been trimming back dead wood on my azaleas, and pinching off double buds on the camillias to get bigger blooms, but that's probably only of interest to other old farts.  What can I say; life is good!  Y'all do your best to stay out of the way of the crazy Christmas shoppers out on the road, and I'll do the same.  Ciao, y'all.
12/17/06
Once again, I don't have a lot to report on, but that's mainly because I haven't been riding all that much.  I THINK last Monday was my last day out riding'm not sure since it's all kinda fuzzy since then.  In fact, I don't think I've gotten 3 hours' uninterrupted sleep since Tuesday..maybe??
 
I've been fighting the cold from hell...and losing!  You know, the kind you wake up at 3AM, hacking and gasping from; the one that makes your diaphram ache from coughing so much; that keeps your stomach upset fromall the nasal drainage.  Okay, got the picture?  Sorry if that's too graphic for you but I do want to spread the joy around.  In my behalf, I will say I avoided today's ABATE meeting so I wouldn't spread it that way.
 
And I'm REALLY pissed off about it since it's such a gorgeous day out and I'm not well enough to ride safely.  Y'all take care (and vitamin C) and ride safe.
12/26/06
Ain't it funny how time flies when you're having fun?  Well, I haven't been, nor has it.  The day after my last entry, I finally broke down and went into the VA Clinic.  It turns out I had acute bronchitis and, according to the doc, was just a couple of days away from pneumonia.  So now, nine days of antibiotics, steroids and inhalant later, I'm still hacking a little bit but can at least sleep lying down again.  For about 5 nights, the only way I could sleep was sitting upright in my recliner at night.
 
I rode a little bit on Saturday but I was still a little shaky so it wasn't for too long.  Finally, I felt good enough on Christmas morning to go out for a while on the scoot...and it was wonderful!  Except for the wind!  As heavy as the bike and I are, we were getting blown all over the road.  Stop signs and light were especially fun, almost being blown over several times while stopped.  Funny how those big gyroscopes on the front and back don't work when they're not spinning.
 
Right now, my hope is that the weather on Saturday is pretty good.  I really do want to ride up to Stockton for the Stagecoach Ride-in but I don't want to push things too much until I feel fully recovered and back to 100%.  In the meantime, I'm just gonna take it in small steps.  Merry Christmas and Happy New Year, y'all.  Ride safe.
12/31/06
Okay, so there hasn't been much change in the past 5 days, but I just felt like capping off 2006.  Much as I wanted to, I didn't ride to the Stagecoach in Stockton this year since I'm still in the grips, albeit lightly, of this bug.  Age having (finally, perhaps) given me something loosely akin to wisdom, I figured the probability of riding wet and cold would have been somewhat high and not something which would aid my recovery.  In hindsight, I don't think I would have gotten wet but would have worried about it the whole trip.  Damn, it's a bitch getting old!
 
It's pouring rain right now (almost 2 inches in my rain guage a minute ago) and the rumbles of thunder sound like somewhere around Lillian or Perdido Key.  I've finished my bowl of grits and am on my second cup of coffee.  Of course, it's a 10 ounce mug so I'm almost awake despite the steady drumming on the roof.  It's about 15 1/2 hours until New Year's so let me cut off these final 2006 ramblings and get them up on the web.  Take care, my friends, ride safe (after it stops raining), and be good to each other.  We ARE a family.