Here are some of the previous items from my home page.
Finally Got Out For A Ride!
warm and sunny and I actually
managed to get the bike out
for the first run this year.
This is actually about two
months later than we can
"typically" get the bikes on
the road around here in a
normal year. But there has
been nothing normal about the
weather here this year, we
still had snow in parts of the
yard just last week.
But it was certainly nice to
get out on the bike once
again! Every new riding season
is exciting. Firing up the
bike for the first time since
putting it away sometime last
November and hearing that
rumble is amazing. It always
seems to stir something deep
inside of riders. It's part of
the passion of riding I guess.
And, as usual, the bike is
running great. I did a little
bit of work on it over the
winter and everything seems to
be working great. A little bit
of TLC goes a long way to
keeping these beasts running
well for many a year!
Anyway I hope that all of you
have managed to get out riding
by now. We can only hope that
we get lots of warm and sunny
Good Service Deserves A
Their motto of "True Service"
is all that and then some.
When I changed my snow tires
off last week I discovered a
nail in one of them that had
been causing a slow leak. So I
popped it in to our local Kal
Tire shop and asked them to
fix it up for me.
When I went back to pick it up
they had patched it and
refilled it with nitrogen and
when I asked how much I owed
them they said "No Charge".
Now is that True Service or
Thanks Guys! I owe you one!
April 20, 2014
A Curling Giant is Retiring
Kevin Martin, a
Canadian curling star whose
career highlights include an
Olympic gold metal and a world
championship, will soon throw
his last rock.
The Edmonton, Alberta skip
announced his retirement on
Friday. The decision to retire
came after the Canadian
Olympic curling trials back in
December 2013 when Martin's
team failed to book a ticket
to the Sochi Games.
The affable Martin, nicknamed
"The Bear" has been a
powerhouse in Canadian curling
since making his junior debut
in 1984. He won a Canadian
junior curling championship
with Alberta in 1985 and never
looked back. We'll still be
able to see Martin on the
curling circuit, as he will be
joining Sportsnet as a
broadcast analyst next season.
We'll miss seeing his
infectious smile and
remarkable abilities out on
April 17, 2014
New Addition to the Family
Well, Ellen and I
are the proud new parents of a
brand new Honda Fit.
Our 14 year old Civic finally
gave up the ghost last week so
we needed something to fill
The good folks down at Gore
Motors got us back on the road
without a problem, and this is
a really nice car. It's shiny
and new and Ellen's afraid to
get it scratched, so if you
see her out on the road give
her LOTS of room.
And of course I've now spent
all of my Mad Motorcycle Money
so it looks like I'll be
riding my trusty old V-Star
for a few more years. Hey,
maybe I can run the mileage up
on that thing to around
300,000 km.... That can
be a goal to work towards!
We'll see you on the road if
the cold and snow ever move
back to the Arctic.
April 14, 2014
pretty much made it through
the winter - although you
wouldn't know it from my back
yard - and we're starting to
see some bikes out on the
Spring riding can present some
interesting challenges out on
our roads. Potholes, road
cracks, frost heaves, sunken
manhole covers, and soft shoulders can
be a bikers nightmare. We
often end up weaving back and
forth across the road surface
like drunken sailors just trying to avoid the worst
of the damaged sections of our
roads and highways.
This past winter was one of
the harshest, coldest and
longest in recent years which
takes its toll on our roads.
Things to look out for, other
than the ever-present
potholes, are bicycles, our
ever-growing deer population,
icy patches on the roads in
shadow areas, sand and gravel
in the corners, soft gravel on
shoulders and parking areas
and of course the inevitable
So if you're able to get out
on the roads, take it easy,
slow down and enjoy the warm
April 2, 2014
April 1st, (while we were
contending with freezing rain
and a snow storm) as a cruel
joke I think, my friend Mel
From Austin sent me a bunch of
pictures that he took this
past weekend of him and his
friends riding Big Bend
National Park in west Texas.
The pictures are
amazing. There's not a parka
or toque or pair of snow boots
to be seen anywhere. In fact
it looks like it was warm and
sunny . . . I long for the
days that were warm and
Environment Canada says that
it's supposed to get up to
Plus 1 today! I might be able
to get out and wash the truck!
Maybe take the parka off....
Maybe change to my summer long
johns . . . . Maybe see the sun . . . !
March 27, 2014
Scooter Mania Has Begun
Looking for a
scooter to zip around the city
Check out the 2014
Sym Symba 100!
This little beast is
a 101cc semi-automatic bike
that is the ultimate city
bike. The engine is matched
with a 4-speed semi-automatic
transmission, meaning gear
shifts are performed without a
clutch but with a heal/toe
Part of the attraction
of this bike is most certainly
the classic retro design which
is spot on. The SYM Symba 100 is
a “Cub” style motorcycle built
to be stylish, fuel efficient
and appealing. Why the “Cub”
design you ask, well, 65 million
owners of the original Honda Cub
couldn’t all be wrong. The style
is timeless! As is the life of
these machines, starting with a
24 month warranty. At $2995.00
CDN with both electric and kick
start standard, delivering
100mpg and able to run 100kph,
this scooter would be a hoot to
tool around on!
Check out the full line at
Winnipeg Scooter City:
2014 Honda CTX700T
Cool Factor = 100%
has got to be one of the best looking
motorcycles that any manufacturer has come out
with in years!!
We got to see (and sit on) this bike at the
show and it is truly impressive. It is
definitely in a class of its own.
And, no, it is not a 2000cc, 900 pound, 130
horsepower behemoth, but the last time I
checked the speed limit on most of our
highways is 90 kilometers an hour, and this
700cc beauty is more than capable of
comfortably doing that all day long! And I
like a comfortable ride.
January 9, 2012
- Updated March 2014
One of the greatest thinkers of our time,
Stephen Hawking, has celebrated his 72nd birthday
in January and still ponders the questions
of the universe.
"Where do we come from? How did the
universe begin? Why is the universe the way it is? How will it end?
"All my life, I have been fascinated by the big questions that face us, and
have tried to find scientific answers to them. If, like me, you have looked
at the stars, and tried to make sense of what you see, you too have started
to wonder what makes the universe exist. The questions are clear, and
deceptively simple. But the answers have always seemed well beyond our
reach. Until now.
"The ideas which had grown over two thousand years of observation have had
to be radically revised. In less than a hundred years, we have found a new
way to think of ourselves. From sitting at the center of the universe, we
now find ourselves orbiting an average-sized sun, which is just one of
millions of stars in our own Milky Way galaxy. And our galaxy itself is just
one of billions of galaxies, in a universe that is infinite and expanding.
But this is far from the end of a long history of inquiry. Huge questions
remain to be answered, before we can hope to have a complete picture of the
universe we live in."
So, there you go. As we ponder how we
ended up on this little blue rock spinning through space I'll be getting
ready to head down to the International Motorcycle Show in Minneapolis in a
couple of weeks. I hear that Triumph is supposed to be there this year and I
really want to see their new line-up of bikes, and especially the new
Spring is on it's way so start planning
for some rides!
UPDATE: April 8,
I should let you know that Matt Marino, the creator and author of
Motobasturds, severely injured himself last year and consequently his
website has been offline for quite a while now. Lets hope that he gets well
and is able to work on getting Big O and his pal Stonee through some more
As I've always said, if you keep looking
long enough you can find just about anything on the internet, but sometimes
that can be good or bad.
Fortunately here is
another gem for you.
I came across a biker
cartoon a while back and thought I'd share it with you. The cast of
characters is led by an Old-School biker named Big O, and he knew that he
had met that one special lady for him when he heard Betty say those four
magic words "I own a bar".
The cartoon strip has been on the
internet for about three years now and is written by an old biker by the
name of Matt Marino. You can check it out at:
It's a pretty funny strip and you should
check it out. It has evolved over the years and one of the latest things
that Matt is working on is turning the strip into an animated series. I
March 25, 2014
Team Canada Wins Silver
through the round robin with a 10
and 1 standing (losing their very
first game to Switzerland), and
winning the Page 1-2 playoff game
against the Swiss team, Rachael
Homan’s Team Canada fell to
Switzerland in the Gold Metal game
taking home the Silver Metals.
part was not bringing back gold
for Canada, obviously,” said
Homan, who was backed up by third
Emma Miskew, second Alison
Kreviazuk, lead Lisa Weagle,
alternate Stephanie LeDrew, team
coach Earle Morris and national
coach Elaine Dagg-Jackson. “But
I’m really proud of the run we had
all week. Just disappointed that
we didn’t finish off that last
During the closing
ceremony, Kreviazuk was named
winner of the Frances Brodie Award for
fair play and sportsmanship, after
a vote by the players. “I had an
amazing time,” said Kreviazuk
“We’re one up from last year (when
Team Homan won bronze at the 2013
World Women’s Championship in
Latvia); a silver medal is still
an improvement over the bronze
last year. I’m so proud of the
girls. It feels good to come out
of this with a medal and to
showcase it to our country.”
Next year’s World Women’s
Curling Championship, presented by
Ford of Canada, is scheduled for
March 12, 2014
Here is an image for you. The picture
here shows where, in all of the oceans surrounding the globe, you can get
eaten by a Great White Shark. Now I didn't grow up and have never
lived near an ocean, but I did see all of the Jaws movies and that's why I
live far inland... Let's see those evil, slimy, toothy buggers get me
Today is March the 8th and
it's not quite springtime in my back yard yet.
UPDATE: March 28th, 2014 -
IT LOOKS JUST THE SAME!!!
UPDATE: April 4th, 2014
- IT LOOKS JUST THE SAME, only
with four or five inches of fresh snow on
March 4, 2014
Finally, a reflective spray paint for animals
Check this out - a company in Finland
has come up with a variety of
reflective spray paints that can not
only be used on equipment, bicycles
and clothing but on animals and pets
Anyone that is going to be out at
night and is at risk of being hit by
traffic should try some of this paint.
The spray paint is harmless to animals
and is invisible in the daytime, but
is light reflective at night.
Now, if we could just manage to round
up the entire deer and moose
population around Thunder Bay and get
them all sprayed up with this paint
then maybe there wouldn't be as many
killed on our roadways every year.
Check out their website at:
Has Canada Not Got The Best Curlers In The
The Relentless Assault Continues
The polar vortex that has sent a blast
of super cold arctic temperatures down
into southern Canada and even the
southern United States, creating a
deep freeze across North America,
continues its relentless assault.
expect the polar vortex to return to
the arctic anytime soon.
And if that isn’t bad
enough, on New Years’ Day it was
colder in Winnipeg, Manitoba than it
was on the planet Mars. The
temperature in Winnipeg reached -31C
(or -24 Fahrenheit). It was ‘only’
-29C on Mars on the same day. Some
parts of Manitoba, Ontario and Quebec
have seen temperatures as cold as
-50C, as the eastern Canadian
provinces have had their coldest
winter in 80 years.
Team Canada is Still On Fire
Rachel Homan won her second Canadian
women’s curling championship on Sunday
night, defeating Val Sweeting of Alberta 8-6 in
the final of the 2014 Scotties Tournament
“Unbelievable,” said Homan
about her team. “They couldn’t have played
better. We all just believe in each other
and played hard right to the end.” “It was
not an easy game,” she said. “They
(Alberta) made us work for every point we
Canada – made up of Rachel Homan, Emma
Miskew, Alison Kreviazuk, Lisa Weagle,
alternate Stephanie LeDrew and coach Earle
Morris – took control right from the start,
blanking the first end and drawing for three
in the second when Sweeting’s take-out
attempt just ticked a guard.
This was the second
straight Scotties title for Homan and her
team, who play out of the Ottawa Curling
Club. Homan reached the final after going
undefeated in the round robin. With this
win, Homan and her team will move on to
represent Canada at the 2014 Ford World
Women’s Curling Championship March 15-23 in
Saint John, N.B.
Raging Against Bad Websites
it ever happen to you? You're at your
computer, minding your own business, browsing
through the World-Wide-Web, looking for cool
stuff when - Bam! - you come across some piece
of crap website that has so many active links
on it that it locks up your computer just
trying to open it. Ten minutes later half of
it has opened and it still has your computer
Now I'll admit that I don't have the most
up-to-date computer in the world, and we're
running on Thunder Bay's SUPPOSED high-speed
system, but crappy websites are just crappy
Come on website designers, dump some of the
advertising, some of the animation, the
scrolling banners, the active slideshow, the
fifty different active links, etc. Trust me,
if no one can open your home page they will
quickly move on to friendlier sites -
I will also be the first to admit that I am
not a website designer and that this website
may not be the best one on the web, and you
can send me ideas to improve it, but it works
(most of the time) and is still happily
advertisement free coming up on three years
International Motorcycle Show in Minneapolis is done for another
back to the snow and cold again. Our Polar
Vortex has returned to Thunder Bay with a
vengeance, however Ken and I had a great time
Minneapolis wandering through the show
checking out the bikes and vendors.
got to see and sit on tons of bikes, and there
are some real beauties coming out this year.
The bike pictured here is the 2014 Suzuki
Boulevard S40, a 650cc beauty that comes in
this white and silver paint job or in orange
and black as per the bike beside me. This
white and silver layout has a real nostalgic
look to it.
number of vendors and the number of visitors
to the show were both greatly reduced this
year, consequently we didn't have to fight
through huge crowds.
Even my t-shirt guy wasn't there, I was a bit
disappointed about that.
The Apocalypse is
Almost Upon Us!
you believe this - what is being called an
"Arctic Polar Vortex" is hitting Canada and the
United States hard this winter. Brutal,
bone-chilling cold is gripping much of Canada
and the U.S., and despite what some may say it
would appear that global warming is playing a
big role in the spread of this bitter cold.
may sound like something out of a disaster
movie, or a made-up name, but the polar vortex
is very real. In the northern hemisphere, the
strong circulations of frigid air typically
hang over the north pole, trapping most of the
extreme cold over the Arctic. However this
winter the jet stream has swung south through
Canada and the U.S. pulling the frigid Arctic
air mass with it.
All we can do is wait for things to
improve. Get the oil tank filled up and rent
some movies - it looks like it is going to be
a long, cold winter!
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