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Black Lives Matter, and I Will No Longer Stay Quiet

June 2, 2020
As a blogger, I have been silent for almost two years, since I don’t currently have a motorcycle and felt weird posting about random shit, even though my intention for the blog initially was to post about motorcycling and random shit.

Lately, I have been excited about some projects and ready to refresh the blog and start posting again.

In this moment, however, it is difficult to share “happy” stuff, when so much is wrong on a national level. I am tired of being a passive witness to inequalities and oppression. I am sad and angry, in particular about the recent murders of innocent human beings by police, and by institutional racism and the many injustices that are heaped on people of color in this country.

There is egregious, systemic oppression of minorities and specifically Black people in America, ongoing for more than 400 years. It is far past time to make this stop.

It is no longer enough to continue thinking of ourselves as “not racist”. If we are not actively assisting communities of color by supporting equity, inclusion, and equality, then we are passive, and therefore, we support the culture of racism that we have grown up with.

Believe me, this is a very uncomfortable feeling. I have always believed myself to be “not a racist” and yet, what I have done to make things better for others outside my immediate communities? While I promote kindness and compassion to strangers, it is the work of disabling the mantle of oppression where the rubber truly meets the road.

If you are interested in being an anti-racist, join your local NAACP chapter and get active.

Sign the #JusticeforFloyd petition. Every name added builds momentum around the campaign and makes it more likely to get the change we want to see. After you’ve signed the petition please also take a moment to share it with others. It’s easy – all you need to do is forward the link.

Listen to Van Jones speaking with Conan O’Brien about the George Floyd killing and what comes next: https://youtu.be/62opaXeyWZY

Find something on this reading list for white allies: http://bit.ly/ANTIRACISMRESOURCES

The time is now, as much as it ever has been.

Stay safe, and get active…
LRRL

Shaking Out the Cobwebs

April 26, 2018

I can’t remember the last time I rode. October-something last year? It’s been too darn long, for sure, but I am a fair weather rider and today was as perfect as it gets here in Oregon’s Willamette Valley.

Now you get to hear me toot my horn a little. Today I did something I have never done before. I replaced the battery in my bike, with only a little over-the-phone help from my friend, Tony, and some prior verbal advice from my PDXSR buddy, Jim Redbird, notably to READ MY MANUAL. And by all means do not remove the gas tank (that’s a whole ‘nother story…)!

I’d done a test run about three weeks ago, to figure out how to remove my seat, my upper fairing, and take a look inside where the battery lives. Today was fairly quick, except for a less-than-brief interruption to run my car in for an oil change.

I only took a couple of photos, and a video when Big Red fired right up; woot!

Here is the where the former battery isn’t:

battery slot

And, here is the dead battery:

old battery out

And, here is my bike running:

(Sorry, this space empty because WordPress wants me to upgrade to include video. I wonder how long that’s been a thing?)

Suffice to say, the new battery works so I hopped on Big Red and headed out to the country for some non-ethanol fuel and about 60 miles of riding fun near the end of the day. Big Red purred like a kitten, I got to smell new-mown fields and cherry blososms, and enjoyed fairly empty country roads. . . closest to paradise I’ve been in some time.

Hope to see you on the road!

Ride safe, y’all!

 

 

 

Portland Cars and Coffee

July 12, 2017

A friend in Eureka, California, somehow found out about a motorhead club called Portland Cars and Coffee, sending me a link to a Facebook event for “Motorcycle Day”. Because my days of the week are kind of screwed up, due to a Wednesday through Sunday work schedule, I assumed Motorcycle Day was Saturday, July 8, and I showed up bright and early for the meet-up. Not on my bike, but that’s another story…

Turns out I was there for German DTM, and there were rows and rows of gorgeous BMWs in the outer lot of the World of Speed Motorsports Museum where the event takes place every Saturday during summer. Walk into the main lots, and, holy sh$t, the cars will take your breath away. Add in a few rebel Japanese and American models, a few bikes, and a stunning display of vehicles was a feast for the eyes.

I’ll hit Motorcycle Day this weekend, and take my “good” camera…. 😉

Until next time, enjoy these images.

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Seeking Women Riders for Input on Riding Gear

December 17, 2016

Road Runner magazine is requesting input on gear from women riders. Okay, the guys can step up and do the survey too, but this seems super important for the ladies to take on.

Women, here’s a link to the article. You can click and take the survey. Time to speak up to gear manufacturers and let them know what you like, don’t like, and how you think gear can be improved.

That’s all for now, folks!

Side Tracked by Spectacular

February 2, 2016

The next day’s ride-to-work did not materialize as planned: it rained during the night, leaving slick, wet roads. I had too much stuff to carry the few miles to work, and truth be told, I ran out of time to load up the bike that morning. (Insert thought: “If only I had a bike with hard cases… how much easier it would be to commute!”)

The weather cleared beautifully during the work day. I was sorely tempted to keep the bike close by, but with another storm expected the next day, I opted to shuttle her back to a dry parking spot in a friend’s garage across town.

As I headed south from home, I noted that the day was ending with a seriously gorgeous sunset, and what the hell, there was no deadline to put the Seca away, so I veered west to the newest section of coastal trail, south end. And got to see this:

Sunset at Noyo Headlands South Trail

Seriously, who can resist a sunset like this?

I sat and contemplated the clouds for a short time before heading out again.

Motorcycle and sky

I watched the colors change for a bit, then mounted up to get the bike inside and myself home before dark. But, then, you know how the colors get richer as the light fades? I was sure glad I’d grabbed the phone…

Sunset on the Pacific Ocean

Last look at a spectacular sunset.

Short ride. Spectacular view. Lucky me.

Until next time… cheers!
LRRL

First Ride of 2016

January 27, 2016

The weather and roads cleared enough today for me to get out on the bike, albeit for a short—very short—ride. Still and all, breathing the rain-scrubbed air from atop two wheels was pretty damn fine. I took the bike out of storage and she’s at my house tonight, ready to go should our expected clear skies manifest tomorrow. One never knows this winter…. all I can do is hope for the best.

Here are a few pics as I am ready to roll:

lilred herself

I’m not very good at this selfie thing… 😉

bike from the saddle

I seriously need to look for a new windscreen.

Bonus photo, from a walk on New Year’s Day (because neither of the above photos is particularly satisfying):

waves and cormorants

Big waves offshore at MacKerricher State Park.

Happy New Year, fellow riders (and readers). I hope to see you on the road this year.

Keep the rubber side down!

–LRRL

Gratitude

November 26, 2015

Today I am reflecting on sorrow and gratitude both, for challenges I am experiencing and the growth that, with mindfulness, will be the outcome.

Today I offer gratitude for this moment, for family and friends who care about me, and I open my heart to the beauty of this world.

Today I offer gratitude for the community I have found through riding, that I have a running bike and money for fuel, and for the profound sense of awe and awareness in the present moment that occurs when I ride.

A friend shared a wise, wonderful video that I am passing on. I encourage you to take six short minutes out of your day to watch this, and to meditate on the beauty that is present in each of our lives, no matter what else is going on.

Ride safe. Be peace,

lilred