Summer is coming

And I can hardly wait. I’ve been celebrating early and getting out and about while Canberra is at its best, but sadly not on my bike :-/ everything is running smoothly with those two, just OH and I have been enjoying the AC in the car. And, for this week, I’m off the bike due to a gym induced injury (and out of the gym so it’s a very sad archetypicalone all round).

I really loathe driving to work. Especially since we have big cars. As we commute by bike, it makes sense to have a workhorse style vehicle, as it doesn’t get used regularly except to carry stuff too big for a bike. It makes me feel incredibly lonely to be all alone, in my massive 5 seater car, crawling through peak hour traffic, watching my fuel consumption rise and rise…..
But yes. If I rest my shoulder until it heals, the sooner I will be riding again. And going to the gym. Damn I miss that.

But anywho, as mentioned earlier, OH and I have been enjoying Canberra’s warmer weather. Last Friday night we had bbq dinner at Lonsdale St Roasters BYO&BBQ nights, and I had fried chicken I could live off forever. It was so good I didn’t even ask for a bite of OH’s burger (always curious as to what I may have missed out on lol).  Then we visited Dessert Castle, which I wasnt overly impressed with. I did make a nice Reece’s Pieces flavoured Frozen yogurt though, but the Salted Caramel Opera Cake had no hint of caramel at all.

Saturday we ventured down to the deep dark southside to visit Smoque, which has opened their second restaurant in the foyer of Abode Apartments in Woden. Oooohhhhh I was so tempted to get the fried chicken and waffles, but went for the pulled pork instead. Delicious.

Edit: forgot about this – on the way home we actually went to Parliment House for the (my) first time. It’s surprisingly beautiful inside – sort of 80’s post modern with lots of light and white and golden polished wood. We went up on the roof, had a look at the rooms, viewed the Magna Carte exhibit, and exited via the surprisingly good coffee shop.
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View from the top of the building, with the Captain Cook jet going off
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This flag looks as big as a bus!

Sunday was quiet, mainly because the weather turned and it was raining. So off to the gym to injure myself I went lol.

I miss my bike. Soon my pretty.

(Sorry this is so disjointed, i considered splitting into 2 posts since I have been writing it since Monday, but meh.)

New chain and sprockets!

I’ve tried to post this several times, and perhaps I’m putting in too many pictures as it keeps failing! 
Thanks to Team Ghetto Racing, Stella is now wearing a 520 chain conversion and some sparkly new sprockets. She also got a custom front sprocket guard, hand made on the day, which I am very chuffed with. She feels pretty fucking awesome!
So let’s try this with less pictures lol.

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Rear set undone (so you can move the gear shifter off for access to the front sprocket) and everything loosened off

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Busting the chain

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Ooh shiny new sprocket

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Nooooo put it back!

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#thisguy

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Bling!

And that’s how you change a chain lol :-)

The fight against filtering

So this morning, I filtered through stopped traffic to a known dangerous roundabout. In the time I have lived in my suburb, 16 months or so, I have traversed this roundabout by motorcycle most working days. After seeing the debris of several accidents, seeing actual accidents, and having a couple of close calls when the traffic had been stopped (nearly rear ended by people distracted by phones/children/breakfast/etc) I have made the executive decision that’s is safest for me to spend as little time as possible in the mess. So, once the traffic splits from 1 lane to 2, if it’s stopped I will slowly ride up between the lanes and get through asap. I have no desire to be rear ended.
Most of the time, this is not a problem. I have had the occasional bad tempered response or someone try to race me off the line at a break in traffic, but this morning something took the cake.
I filtered up to the top, and stopped in front of a white older Toyota Ute with a canopy (commonly referred to as a ‘low lux’ – I think they are actually branded a high lux but they are the same height as a normal car, not a 4wd). I took off at an appropriate break in the traffic, and he tried to cut me off. He didn’t suceed, and off I went down the road.
The ute tailgated me for a considerable distance, then backed off a bit, but cut people off at the roundabout.
After a little while, I had to stop at a set of traffic lights. The ute pulled up beside me, and honked their horn until I opened my visor. The flowing exchange occurred:
(driver) Why did you overtake me on a single lane road?
(me) I didn’t, it was 2 lanes at that time.
(driver) but why did you overtake me?
(me – a bit concerned by this stage, he was yelling and gesturing out the window) have you ever thought about what happens if a motorcyclist gets rear ended?
(driver) have you thought about the fact that I’m an off duty cop and in going to send you a ticket?
And at that point the light went green and I took off. The ute continued to follow me and then turned at a point close to my work which was going to take him back in the direction from which we came, telling me he was quite possibly following me to see where I worked.
Considering there is a filtering trial starting in the ACT at the start of next year, this attitude is something all riders are going to face at some point .
I also call bullshit on the off duty cop remark, if he was off duty he is still required to identify himself and show identification, not yell it at me out the window of his shitty ute at the traffic lights.
And the fact he nearly followed me to work is just a desire to bully and intimidate me.

Grrrrrr. I hope the government does a good job of raising awareness of the trial, as this may get ugly.

A brief brush with disappointment

This weekend I had a rather unpleasant experience.
It began while I was looking for upcoming events on a riding forum. In one of the events, the OP had stressed that lady riders were welcome, which led me to question why the emphasis was needed. So, I asked. One smartass response (not from the OP) was answered in like, and then someone else commented that while a bit creepy, it was more likely a misunderstanding, that the OP was just trying to ensure that no one felt excluded. I acknowledged this response, and moved on. No one is perfect, and misunderstandings are common. People continued to discuss the point, but when someone justified it as old fashioned manners I did something. I took the bait.

All in all the experience was quite disappointing. I was accused of being discriminatory against men, of supporting a complaining culture, and of deliberately stirring trouble (to summarise). Essentially, despite attempts of reason and mutual understanding by one or two other members of the forum, it all came down so much man bashing hysteria, when what I was trying to say is ‘if you don’t want to exclude us, dont single us out.’

After the OP actually responded with an extremely condescending post, where he called me sweety and baby, discussion only got another handful of posts before the mods stepped in and locked the thread. Unfortunately, that is where it has stopped. There has been no word from the mods (except for some private sympathy) regarding the behaviours exhibited during the discussion, and perhaps they do not feel it is their place.

One thing that saddens me though – very few men, and possibly few women would have seen a problem with what was said. I can’t speak for all women, despite sharing the same style of genitals. But some would have, and, as evident by the comments before it denigrated into a shit storm of man bashing hysteria, some people of both genders agreed that the wording was ‘creepy’. To me that indicates they didn’t feel comfortable about female riders being singled out. To be singled out can indicate that you are different, that you are not able to be included in the general sense. To me, in this sense, it says women riders are not welcome except by special invitation. And that’s really disappointing in 2014.

Skinned Knuckles @ The Chop Shop, Braddon

On Saturday, a local motorcycle customiser bought some of his bikes out (with some others from the community) for a small show at the local hipster funky place, the Chop Shop. The Chop Shop itself has an interesting story, being a bar/local art space in an old garage along the über trendy Lonsdale St in Braddon, Canberra. They had some serious hurdles getting open, and are only open until new years, as the building they are camped in is set to be demolished. But now they are open its party on as long as they can.

But back to the bikes. The customiser, Simon Whittaker, organises the Distinguished Gentleman’s Ride in Canberra, and proceeds from the entry fees go to the same charities they support. There was a great turnout, and I actually wish I’d gotten a photo of all the bikes parked it the front.

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Loved this!

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If you follow me on Instagram, you would have seen most of these. But, it’s always nice to see such beautiful bikes again :-)

After the show, CanberraRIDERS traipsed around town, finishing up at Red Hill Lookout for a group photo.

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And then returned to the pub for a drink and/or dinner. Twas a great day!

And finally, I join another social media site.

I think its obvious that I’m a fan of instagram. Its premise and simplicity appeals to me – look at this awesome picture I took World! But Youtube is something I have never really gotten – if I need to waste time, I get on other sites. However, I have been watching it a bit lately (seriously, what is the deal with vlogging??? Its hilarious and cringe-worthy, all in the same often way too long video) for techy stuff and keep getting distracted by other stuff, such as paying out vloggers and watching amusing animals. So here, look at my contribution to youtube. Perhaps I will be inspired to put more things up, provided there isn’t more videos of cute little puppies doing cute little things.

Video is of a section of my favourite loop, Canberra to Kangaroo Valley. This covers the Nerriga Pub  to Nowra leg. Hope you enjoy. I got a cherry pie at my favourite pie place after the best part of the loop, I truly enjoyed that. Its on instagram.

Its a little bit like Christmas – Intermot 2014

Well, it would be if someone would buy me tickets and airfares to get there……(maybe one day I’ll be such a popular blogger that that’s feasible? Hmm) but regardless, the news and photos that have been coming out of this year’s Intermot (held in the fabulous Cologne, Germany) has been pretty exciting. There’s been the Ducati Scrambler, a very interesting Ktm electric bike that I really want more details on, and the interesting news that Triumph has released a mash up of the Street Triple and the Daytona, called the Street Triple RX.

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Shamelessly stolen from Instagram (motostation)

Hmm. I’m not completely sold, but I am incredibly biased so we have to keep that in mind. To me, the banana seat suits the more upright positioning on the Street, and the racer style seat suits the tuck of the Daytona. But, ultimately, it will take seat time to determine, so if I get an opportunity dear reader I will be sure to report back.
Oh and the Kawasaki H2R supercharged track version 298hp bike was shown off. It’s been declared a game changer. I’m very curious to see where it goes from here, with the street version tipped for unveiling in November.

And remember readers, if you have spare tickets, I’ll be your best friend…..

UPDATE: news on the new R1! Well, a hint anyway. Dammit teaser campaigns.

3 November 2014 – The beginning of a new era: http://youtu.be/NY9IfAOK4jM

This is a bit grrrrr

Its a long weekend here, and its glorious and sunny, but I havent gotten out for a ride. A combination of not really feeling well, and a strong freezing wind coming in from the Snowies. Its not actually blowing right now, so OH is trying to persuade me to go for a ride now. But its 12:30am, and the skippys are out. Ah well.

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Random picture of an awesome Enfield parked in Munich.