Blue Dog Diaries: Victory no more


With the announcement on January 9 that Victory Motorcycles is being shuttered by parent corporation Polaris, the question that arises is not, “Why?” The question is, “Why did it take so long?” As a practical matter, the clock started running out on Victory with the purchase of the Indian motorcycle marque in 2011. While the two brands would be “autonomous” ...

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Mile Marker: February, 2017


The veterans at the Grand Rapids, Michigan Home for Veterans have 11 new computers with 27” monitors compliments of the American Legion Riders Post #179 in Grandville, Michigan. The computers are equipped with webcams and headsets. Joe Mosketti, assistant director for the Post ALR, said the money for the computers was raised at the annual Veterans Memorial Ride they host ...

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Motorhead Memo: Digging on the Shovel


2016 marks the 50th annual opportunity to buy a Shovelhead. Better do it sooner than later as they are already worth more than Evos in today’s marketplace. “Worth” is not always the same thing as value, but the reality is that finally… finally… the Shovelhead is getting the respect and attention it deserves. The last of the built-to-be-rebuilt Harley engines, ...

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Almost Fiction: Christmas Snow Camping and Bad Asphalt


In the very recent past, logic and emotion have been engaging in a vitriolic “take no prisoners” political war, which has not been replicated since 1968. With my decision to renounce this destruction derby, irrespective of the weather or the winter season, I have deemed this the perfect time for a psychological respite. To achieve this, my camping gear is ...

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Hazy on the Details: February, 2017


February—the doldrums of motorcycling, isn’t it? One would think—and yet you look up the THUNDER PRESS calendar for what’s happening in February and there’s plenty to play with, isn’t there? One of the events not on our calendar, but lots of fun, is the Riverside County National Date Festival, which runs February 17 through the 26th. The Camel Races alone ...

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Northeast Passages: February, 2017


Hearts are thumping this month as lovers embrace another holiday, possibly one fraught with chocolate. It’s a month to hope that love takes a straight path toward the long run instead of the quick sprint. It’s like riding the plank after winning the slow race. If you don’t focus on the far end of the board, you likely go off ...

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Free Range: Spirits


It’s a sunny Sunday morning in Southern Arizona and I’m sitting out on my leathers, tinkering on the Beast. I’ve been running Clearwater Lights on the bike for a few months now and they have some new mounting hardware they want road tested, so I’m checking to see if I have the right tools to change out what I have. ...

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Chewin’ the Fat Boy: February, 2017


Our world seems divided these days and it’s difficult to know what’s real versus imagined. What is worth worrying over, really? What can we do to improve the human condition? Maybe it’s time to shut off the noise and turn our attention to living on purpose… It’s easier than you might think to get involved… I grew up in Seattle, ...

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Almost Fiction: The Auto Court


In 1948 the 10-year-old boy lived in an Auto Court owned by his father and mother. After the war, when he left the Army, his parents bought it with his father’s mustering-out bonus. Listening to his folks’ talk he heard mustering as mustard and the family joke became they bought the Auto Court with mustard money. The Auto Court had ...

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Texas Raine: February, 2017

The holiday action kicked off in Dallas with the annual gathering of 1,082 children of Snowball Express (SBE) who were escorted everywhere they went in their 55 buses by 110 volunteer Patriot Guard Riders. SBE is a nonprofit whose mission is to serve the children of our fallen military heroes. The kids arrived into Dallas on December 11 for a ...

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