Things I Learned Today

While riding my bike back from a much-needed personal battery- recharging jaunt to the Mojave desert today I learned two new things:
(A) Some BNSF container freights cross the downhill and flat sections of the line at speeds of around 90 MPH, and (B) if you pace one such train for a couple of miles and wave at the engineer he may reply with an extended "Grade Crossing" diesel-honk.
I figured the honk had to be for me because we'd left the last actual crossing five miles behind and were still ten miles from the next...
~Pete
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On 1/19/2009 12:25 AM Twibil spake thus:

Speaking of having good insurance ...
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solve the problem: negotiations and peace with the Palestinians,
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?? I fail to see the connection. Given tangent paths, both fast freights and sportbikes can do 90 mph all day in perfect safety.
Only difference is that I'm having a lot more fun than the engineer and he doesn't have to keep an eye out for the CHP.
~Pete
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On 1/19/2009 1:04 AM Twibil spake thus:

Well, you know what we call motorcycle riders here in California, don't you? "Organ donors."

Or oncoming traffic ...
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Uh-huh. They call them that all over, just as the right wingnuts from all over call us "The People's Republik of Kalifornia".
In both cases they're throw-away insult lines used as substitutes for actual thought by people with envy or sagging ego problems.
> > Only difference is that I'm having a lot more fun than the engineer

Er, on a *freeway*!?
Funny thing about indulging in the occasional mildly risky undertaking such as riding a motorcycle, sky diving, surfing, or rock-climbing: those who do one or more of them *immediately* risk the wrath of the rest of the population, most of whom would secretly *love* to try something like that themselves, but lack the nerve. Other day as I was filling my bike's tank at a gas station, a short fat lady decended from her 40' motorhome, waddled over to me, thrust her head forward and snapped, "You *KNOW* you're going to *DIE*, don't you?".
I pulled off my crash helmet, revealing my 65-year-old face and shock of white hair, and said "Really? When?". She snorted, did an about- face, and waddled back to her motorhome, but I think she took the point.
I may or may not die in bed, but if I *do*, then I know I won't be lying there thinking about all the things I'd wanted to do in my lifetime and regretting that I haven't done them.
~Pete
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On 1/19/2009 1:35 PM Twibil spake thus:

Didn't realize the road paralleling the railroad was a freeway; I was envisioning a 2-lane county road or some such.
You must have thought I was somehow condemning your riding; not the case. More power to you, both literally and figuratively.
Just be careful out there, lest you end up like John Douglas, a regular from another couple newsgroups I read (rec.photo.darkroom and rec.photo.equipment.large-format) who was recently killed on his bike: http://www.t-g.com/story/1484020.html
(Not implying it was anything but an accident.)
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Good for you Pete. I have been a Harley Rider since I was 14 and now I am 66. Yes I have had some wrecks, 2 bad ones, it has been worth it. Your story about riding in the Mojave reminded me of a ride at age 17, in the summer, at temperatures above 120. there were 5 of us guys riding and we couldn't move our hands from the handlebars because the rest of the handlebar was so hot you couldn't grab it. We became dehydrated, beer didn't help. One of the more brilliant things I did at that age. John in the Indian Nations.
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Twibil wrote:

Pete Years ago I would head out to the Palmdale/Lancaster area. Find a nice open area,the kind you can see ahead for miles. Get my Suzuki 1000 up to 100 to 110 mph, put it in neutral and glide for a few miles. Wind in the hair.. That was fun. I'm jealous of your fun. Enjoy the ride Mike Mueller
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Thanx, Mike.
A few years ago I was coming home from sightseeing at the Tehachapi Loop and discovered that the wind was blowing from due west at about 60 mph on the long straight stretch of freeway east of Mojave. You could lift your visor at freeway speeds and feel no wind around you at all!
So, since it was a weekday afternoon with no traffic, I looked carefully around (and above me) and cracked the throttle wide open, eventually covering the thirty-some miles between Mojave and Kramer Junction in just over 14 minutes.
Does your soul good to do that sort of thing every once in a while.
~Pete
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