Congratulations to Debbie Newby in Morgan Hill. Debbie, I had lunch with your mother, Carol Perry, in Lincoln and she told me that you have just bought a Harley. It has become a cliché to say, “Keep the rubber side down,” but it is still good advice. Also, I am going to pass on the best advice I was ever given as a new rider, and that is: “Ride your own ride!” Don’t let a more experienced rider or your own ego intimidate you into riding beyond your comfort level. But no worries; you will do great!… Get-well wishes are for Angelo Cellini from Suisun, who was hurt in an accident on Highway 12 in Jameson Canyon. Angelo came upon an accident as it had just happened. Unfortunately, a big rig coming from the other direction could not stop, and to avoid hitting the accident, the truck swerved toward Angelo. Angelo had to lay his Harley down to keep from getting run over by the truck. He ended up in Queen of the Valley hospital in Napa with a broken ankle, wrist, collarbone, broken ribs and a punctured lung… Happy birthday to all Harley riders who celebrate in July. Happy birthday to that snowbird Jeannie Atwater, and happy birthday to my friend James “Ole” Olson in Texas. Happy birthday to Wende Fletcher and Theresa Snider in Santa Cruz, to Jenny McDonald of Iron Steed H.O.G., to Mike Rampoldi and Sue Chimerofsky of Modesto H.O.G., to John Holm of Mt Diablo H.O.G. and happy birthday to Sammy Kain, owner of Kain’s Tattooz in Scotts Valley. Happy birthday to celebrity riders Tom Cruise, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Toby Keith and Harrison Ford… Take a ride on the back roads here in Northern California. Go to Capay by way of Highway 16 and treat yourself to some amazing food at the Road Trip Bar and Grill. You can’t miss it. Capay is a tiny town with a population of less than 300, and the Road Trip sits right on the highway. Owners Jerry and Paula Tackett will see to it that you have a meal to remember. They are Harley riders and they frequently ride cross-country on one of their many road trips. Think this is how they came up with a name for their restaurant? Not so fast, as the Road Trip is much more than just a restaurant and bar. It is also a heck of a place to hold an event. In fact, the Road Trip recently came up in a conversation with Jim Scribner in Dixon. Jim’s daughter, Sam, is a waitress there and she recently invited Jim to the Road Trip for a very special event. He was invited to meet, greet and share a barbecue with members of Fueled By The Fallen. Fueled By The Fallen was stopping in Capay as they made their way across the country on a “Ride to the Wall.” Fueled By The Fallen was started by Kevyn Major Howard, “Raftman” from Stanley Kubrick’s film, Full Metal Jacket. Kevyn has a fleet of cars decorated in honor of American fallen. Each car is uniquely dedicated and has commemorative names painted on the sides. To see more detailed information on Fueled By The Fallen, go to www.fueledbythefallen.org, and to see more information on the Road Trip Bar and Grill, go to www.roadtripbg.com… Here is a big Harley shout-out for Teresa Murad in Springfield, Virginia. Congratulations, Teresa, on buying your first-ever motor scooter and your first-ever Harley. Teresa said riding is something she has always wanted to do, and now is the time. She said, “I thought that life is too short to not do what I want.” So, folks, Teresa took lessons, got a license and bought a 2011 Sportster 883, and she’s loving it… You know, I am frequently asked for suggestions of which model Harley is best for a novice, and while it may be considered rude, this question is best answered with a series of questions. The first question is: Have you ridden before? If you have, then you already know whether riding is a whim or a passion. If you haven’t, then you are in for a challenge, and you may or may not stick with it. In this case, I suggest that you start with a small financial investment. A small financial investment is going to be a Sportster or a used bike. If you find that you love riding, what kind of riding do you want to do? Sportsters are great for around town and short trips, but long hauls across country are more comfortable on a Big Twin. Here is a good piece of information: The Big Twin is actually easier to ride than a Sportster. “What the heck?” you say. Yes, indeed. The weight on a Sportster is up high between your knees, while the weight on a Big Twin is down low between your ankles. It makes a huge difference. Here is another good piece of information: Harleys can be lowered in the front and back. Take it to the shop and get it lowered until you can stand flat-footed and your butt clears the saddle. My Heritage is slammed down. It makes for going over speed bumps a little tricky, but I wouldn’t have it any other way. For smaller riders, other modifications are possible. For example, switch out the handlebars for an easier reach, switch out the clutch for an easy-pull and switch out the saddle for a narrower girth. So, there you have it, in a nutshell.