Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Fever Pitch

It's a hallmark of blogging I suppose that posts should be somewhat timely - not as timely let's say as Twitter, but at least current. Well... hearing the real time chatter of folks who are taking delivery of their new F650GSs and F800GSs here in the U.S.A. has become a real obsession of mine!

I've been in pretty regular contact with SD BMW Motorcycles and, while they don't know exactly when the bikes will arrive (how can that be true?!), they have said my bike was in the BMW Warehouse on 8/15 AND that just this afternoon (8/26/08) two F650GSs hit their showroom.

I'm anxious, and hopeful that mine will be delivered and ready by the end of the week (just in time for a 3-day weekend to break it in... Of course, it will be the Dark Metallic Magesium color and look much cooler than the bike above. ;-)).

Edit - 8/29/08: got word yesterday afternoon that the dealership had been "invoiced" for the bike. According to Gary Orr, this means that it is on a truck and en route. He doesn't expect it to arrive by the Labor Day w/e, but next week. I'm ordering Farkles and getting my gear ready! ;-)

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Mark's New Suzuki DR650

Imagine my delight this morning when my long-time friend Mark called me to ask if I could drive him down to a dealer in Chula Vista (South Bay Motorsports) where he'd at last found a black Suzuki DR650. I picked him up from home at 3pm with my son Ethan in tow and off we all went: 3 guys on a mission.

The dealership was a long ways away, but oh boy what a complete joint. Like many of the mega-dealers, this one represented Honda, Kawasaki, Suzuki and Yamaha. Very impressive. When we got there, Mark made a bee-line for the gent that he'd spoken with earlier, who wheeled a 2008 DR650 out to the front entrance. Nicely detailed new bike with 1 mile on the speedo. Very dual-sport.

To my amazement, Mark let me have first ride around the parking lot and the bike definitely has power. 2nd gear pulled surprisingly strong. Me likie! It had been 20 years since Mark was
on the street, and he did really well on the way home. The highway seemed a little unnerving the first time out, but he handled it adroitly. Lots of people merging, but he moved neatly from lane to lane and still was modulating the throttle (break-in period).

Mark cruised by my house for a few minutes to debrief, then was on his way again to Poway - God speed!

I'm so anxious now and anticipating the F800GS. The latest of course is that it's at the VPC (vehicle processing center) in New Jersey, timing unknown but probably September. I can't wait to ride with my buddies and explore new territory. Alex T. is considering an F800GS as well, by the way, and Rod is looking at KTM640 & 990s... It's a good time.

Monday, August 04, 2008

BBQ Smackdown a Go-Go

This afternoon was really special. Skip Cohen (Publisher of famous photo pub Rangefinder) and Carey Schumacher, local photographer and owner of Barefoot Memories, had challenged each other to a cook-off. The proceeds were going to the "Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep" foundation which helps families who have lost babies get through the grieving process and have beautiful memories through photography. The gauntlet was thrown, the grills were fired up, and the contest was on!

Tony Corbell, my good friend and co-worker from Nik Software had been scheduled to attend, but was called away at the last minute. Lucky for me though, he gave me his "Golden Ticket" which gives the bearer "magic judging powers." When I got to Balboa Park where the event was held things were in full swing, albeit with people I didn't know. Nevermind, there were great smellin' steaks a'grillin' and smiles all around.

Soon the 8 judges were seated with steaming steaks and fixins' in front. Both pieces of glorious meat were cooked to perfection, I'll hand that to the chefs. I cut into the first steak and sampled it. Good, but... an interesting flavor. Fancy in fact (maybe too fancy I thought). I was eager to taste the second. Whoa. This is good. Solid presentation. Flavorful. Salty. Meaty. The caveman in me was stirred. 

Naturally I had to finish both steaks - all in the interest of "science" of course. Still, in the end, Carey's steak took home the honors with a "ravensalt" rub that gave her meat all the flavor of the Old West or a fresh Mastodon kill. Congrats Carey on your 5-3 win!

Skip - hold yer head up proudly, amigo. Though the Jack Daniels and Soy sauce was a bit over the top for this landlubber, many gentle folk sampled and were drawn to it. Until next time folks...