Wednesday, October 3, 2012

The Unwritten Second Law Of Bikers...

There were two unwritten biker laws that needed no explanation in my native Jersey City of the mid-1970’s. The first was: “Never screw around with another guy’s motorcycle.” This specifically meant never taking somebody else’s machine for an unauthorized ride. The spirit of this law also included “never tampering with, sitting on, nor even breathing hard by someone else’s bike — unless it was to save if from pending theft or imminent destruction.” The second unwritten law was a bit more personal. It stated: “Stay away from another guy’s girl, even if she’s giving you that special look that says she’s open to suggestion.”

I am amazed at how often this second immutable commandment was either stretched or rendered “subject to interpretation.” All of the guys I knew had one special woman (from time to time), who was regarded as the primary love interest (de jour), to be embraced, cherished, and elevated to a position of exclusivity — on the surface, at least. These same guys cheated relentlessly and never hesitated to pursue the velveteen invitation. The truth is that all men regard each other in a suspended state of nature that is barely removed from the status of rabid wolves.

In the bar, it was considered bad form to hold it against some guy for getting into your girl’s pants, as she had to have the final say as to “yes” or “no.” If she said “yes,” it was merely an indication that your relationship was flawed and due for collapse anyway. Either that or you were a douche and the lady was bored... in which case, nature had taken its course.  I had some firsthand experience dealing with radioactive burns on my soul when a buddy laid my serious love interest of some years. It was in the aftermath of this personal destruction that my friend and social mentor, Cretin (pronounced Creetin in Jersey City vernacular), said to me. “Do you think you would act any differently if you had a chance to nail a friend’s girlfriend?”

I raised my eyebrows as high as my ethics and said, “I would never be guilty of that.”

Cretin assured me that there was a gene in all men called the “pheromone orchid sniffer chromosome” that combined survival, curiosity, and sexual focus into a kind of reflex overdrive that did not recognize social parameters like friendship. “This is the chromosome that enables all men to say, ‘Fuck it. I can always get more friends. Hot, naked ass is something else,’” said Cretin.

I can honestly assure the gentle Twisted Roads reader that when this very situation occurred; that when the love interest of a riding buddy cornered me in a remote location (after discovering this-lower-than-whale-shit guy had been cheating on her with a friend); that when this tortured woman quite openly stated her purpose was to discover if my bologna had a first name; I resisted her advances for the length of a hummingbird’s heartbeat. And I am proud to tell you this is ten times longer than the average guy would have held out. (I later discovered that this knockout of a babe called on five or six of this guy’s pals  and made each the same offer. I was the first, however, if that means anything.)

Think about this for a minute. This poor guy was sitting at the bar, bemoaning his fate that the romance has left his relationship, relying on his pals for commiseration, when his former girlfriend showed up to publicly describe the genitalia of his six closest friends. She began with, “You know Slick, you have the second biggest dick of these five guys at the bar.” (Later that night, one of the guys said to him, "Well, the news wasn't all bad.")

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Cretin was about to put me to a simple test. I’d been away from the bar for a week or two, and came riding in from my first international motorcycle run. (I crossed over into Canada at Niagara Falls, doing about 2,200 miles that week.) Cretin was listing against the mahogany bar top in the company of a woman I had never seen before. She was a cute blond with an enthusiastic look in her eyes, jeans tight against a round ass, and hooters that were vying to be recognized as a national monument. I had no idea what it was they were discussing, but her mouth was moving up and down almost faster than sound could register on the naked ear. Now I hadn’t been laid in about three months at this point and I found myself wondering how close my buddy might have been toward cutting this one loose.

Remembering the second unwritten law, however, I merely nodded the barest acknowledgement in his direction and paid her no mind at all. Yet her conversation drew to a halt, and I noticed Cretin whispering in her ear. She seemed to be starring at me as if sunlight was shining out of my ass. It was then that Cretin gestured and introduced me to Julie.

“You’re a writer?” Julie asked. She emphasized the word “writer” as if it  meant “a man who wields a huge phallus.”

I nodded and told her I did indeed have a penetrating obsession for writing.

She had a tight respect for writers, apparently, and a warm appreciation for their efforts. I apparently inspired her. For every word I said, she responded with a thousand. Each of these words leapt upstream at me, like a spawning salmon. I’d only put $10 down on the bar, but was on my sixth rum and Coke. When I asked the bartender about it, he replied, “You’re drinking on Cretin.”

It was then I noticed that Cretin had left. According to the bartender, he’d joined the French Foreign Legion.

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I stated that I’d ridden 400 miles earlier that day and wanted a shower. She counter stated that I really needed a hot shower and a massage... a hot massage... a massage that was hotter than the shower. She knew about massage. She’d met an old Asian massage master, Wong Fong, who taught her how to rub the magic out of things. She explained about nerve endings, blood flow, and the importance of massaging things so that the rubbing action turned the heart on. She had obviously been in here with Cretin, but he stepped out. It seemed like a shame to leave this lady to the common ravages of the bar.

Julie climbed on the back of my 1975 Kawasaki H2, and mentioned it was the first time she’d ever been on a Japanese motorcycle, and how different it seemed from a British bike. Then she spoke about Japanese culture, her voice rising and falling with the revolutions of the engine and the background clatter of the traffic.  She had just reached the height of the influence of the Jomon Period (13,000 - 300 B.C.), when we reached my house. The conversation had moved onto the economic and cultural significance of the silk worm, when she’d removed her brassiere, prior to following me into the shower.

She soaped her body down in the shower, than soaped me down with hers. Throughout this experience, she explained the evolution of soap and the significance of its fragrance in establishing the “ka” of the bath. If she was a machine gun, her rate of fire would have been 950 words a minute.

Twenty minutes later, she was straddling my ass, rubbing the endorphins out of my tortured back. The conversation had turned to the best way to rub spices into pork ribs for grilling. She’d been speaking non-stop for seven hours and could have been a filibuster on a flight to Los Angeles. Had we been on a mountaintop in the Alps, she might have used up a two-week allotment of oxygen in an hour. I started to doze off listening to her tell me what a great day she’d had... meeting a writer... having a madcap, stand-up naked fling in the shower... and rubbing inspiration into his limbs. Of course, it was a shame she had to break the heart of that other guy — the primitive weaver of ancient yarns — but he’d been bound by some obscure code between bikers and had to tell her about the writer.

The “weaver of ancient yarns?” I couldn’t believe Cretin had told her he was a “hand loom artist,” who worked in primitive material. And what the hell was this obscure code?

The naked Julie was going on about fate and destiny, and wasn’t it odd how things turned out?  “What would the next day bring?” she asked.  And then I fell asleep as she launched into the advantages of the Gregorian calendar over the Julian model.

I dreamed I had been thrown from my motorcycle into a river populated by unattached mouthes, all of which were speaking at the same time. That dream became a striptease in which a flawless beauty slowly removed a gown of diaphanous silk, revealing a delicate orchid at the top of her legs, an orchid that slowly began to speak of the Jomon people of ancient Japan.

“You’re awake,” said a voice in my ear. Then she told me about her dreams, which had entailed living in a cottage by a stream, with a writer who wrote her the most amazing little notes.

“Were they suicide notes?” I wanted to ask. Then I slowly rose from the pillow, checking to see if I was bleeding from the ears.

She started in with how perfect the day before had been, and how special today could be. She was imagining the surprise her friends would express when they discovered we were an item. “And you live close by.” she added. “I can be here in minutes, every day.”

My blood ran cold. I didn’t fully understand how the Federal Witness Protection Program worked, but I knew I’d have to rat out someone to save my own life.

It was then I realized I could do what that bastard Cretin did:  invoke the secret clause of the second rule; that no biker should pursue the romantic object of a brother rider, who is head over heels in love, or infatuated, with a particular woman. According to the spirt of this clause, a brother rider should even do what he can to assist the love-struck pal. I had no recourse but to come clean with Julia, and tell her the truth.

I looked her in the eye with the virtue of a future public relations executive and said, “There is another rider who’s been asking about you. One more worthy than me. An artist. A man who captures the essence of life in line and color. A man who sketches you in his mind from the edges of the crowd.”

“Really,” she asked. “Someone more endearing than you? What’s his name?”

I hesitated, looked away, and said, “Spider.”

Spider was one of those rare individuals who could capture a moment, or create one, by making a charcoal pencil dance over a sheet of craft paper. He could draw emotion from a glance, and infuse it to the surface of the paper. And I knew where he’d be an an hour.

Julia clung to my back as the Kawasaki buzzed down to the bar. Now all she could talk about was artists, and what it would like to be with an artist.  She’d begun with the history of cave painting and was up to the Renaissance by the time I pulled up to the bar. All I could think of was that some unsuspecting dope, out riding his Triumph, headed to the bar to read the paper over lunch, would shortly be thrust into the breach, allowing a pal to scramble out of harm’s way.

Too bad.

Spider pulled up on his Triumph as if he was riding to a timetable. He came into the bar, saw I was with a woman he didn’t know, and shot me the kind of nod that passed as a greeting between the most casual of acquaintances. I rolled my eyes at him, ending the roll at Julia beside me. He smiled at no one in particular, and pulled a little sketch pad from his pocket. Without giving it a second thought, he started to sketch her with amazing detail. He’d give me the picture to give to her, thinking he’d be advancing my cause. The poor son of a bitch was signing his own death warrant.

I invited Spider to join us, introducing him as he presented the little portrait. An hour later, he sat enthralled listening to the secret life of Van Gogh’s severed ear, as I got up to take a piss. I stood at the saloon’s side door indicating to the bartender that Spider was on my tab. Then I watched love burst into bloom like plague in a Third World country, and went out to the Kawasaki. Spider would eventually ask the bartender where I’d gone, and Vinnie would tell him I’d been killed in a flaming Zeppelin disaster.

The Kawasaki carried me into neighboring Hoboken, where I found a familiar Norton parked in front of a waterfront gin mill. Cretin was at the bar, watching the door in the ornate mirror. He laughed as I came in, and said, “Are you alone?”

“You’ll have to speak up,” I said. “My eardrums are pounding.”

“Where is she?”

“I hooked her up with Spider.”

Cretin was really laughing hard now. “Your ethics turned to vapor as soon as I left you alone with that woman. You moved on the first whiff of quiff,  which just proves my point.”

“You left a baited hook in my chowder.”

I didn’t see Spider for two more days, and then I found him trying to order a drink through sign language. He’d been deafened over the weekend.

“Where is Julie now?” I shouted.

Spider smiled. He’d left her alone for five minutes with a real artist, Todd Schmidt, a welder and a man who specialized in customized, straight pipes for Harley’s. He’d been deaf for years. Todd moved in on her as soon as Spider went to buy a pack of cigarettes, three towns away.  At the time of this writing, Todd and Julie are still together as a graying couple. I last saw them at Cretin’s funeral. Todd said to me, “She’s a wonderful woman. She takes care of me. She has huge tits. And I can’t hear a word she says. I have no idea what she’s been saying for 44 years,  but whatever the hell it is, she believes in it.”

Technically speaking, Cretin, Spider, and I all shared a romance over a four-day period, with the same woman. Technically speaking, we all showed our true lupine colors. And technically speaking, this made us pool table brothers-in-law. Yet in the final analysis, all’s well that ended well.

© Copyright Jack Riepe 2012

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And then readers sent in their K75 Shots:

Above: Rich Barnhart (Texas) sent us a shot of his recently acquired 1987 BMW K75S. From it's distinctive belly pan to the Darth Vader black accent pieces and bags, this is a classic example of the motorcycle-builder's craft. Cherries are red and this unit certainly has that cherry look about it. According to Rich, his interest in K75's was piqued by the occasional mention of the model in Twisted Roads. In a recent TR survey of BMW riders who get laid more than 4 times a weekend, the K75 is the best model ever to "Whine Out Of The Rhine."


Above: Dedicated Twisted Roads reader Dan Quick (Great Britain/France) sent us these two shots of his recently acquired 1987 K75, equipped with a single headlamp Sprint Fairing. This venerable version of the highly desirable and tenaciously pursued Sprint Fairings has close to 94,000 miles on it. According to Dan, the bike has been ridden hard and given a difficult life in the traces. It isn't quite clear if his restorative plans include the full Monty, or just a touch-up with the garden hose. While the machine cleans up well, it is generally acknowledged that the K75 is barely broken in at 94,000 miles. I can tell you this much, I loved the ability to adjust the back brake with a twist of a wing nut as opposed to the relatively inflexible tension of the disc brake on the newer models.

Above: Twisted Roads devotee Dan O'Connor (Washington) sent us these shots of two K75's in his recent past. Dan's note read, "Dug out some old photos of my Dakar yellow '94 K75S and some with my brother-in-law's red '92.  Mountains in photos are in the North Cascades -- my backyard here in Washington.  I've got a couple other good ones I remember but can't find, so I'll send 'em when I do."

I found it difficult to type looking at this yellow '94 Dakar, as I got a boner that drained all the blood from my head. This K75 is so effing beautiful that I called Dan to ask if he still had it. (He doesn't.)  And he knew he'd hear from me. He knows where the bike went and I'd have to give this rig some serious thought, when the doctor tells me I can ride normally next April. I had a couple of thoughts about this rig. First of all, I don't like the concept of square headlights on motorcycles. But I envisioned this one with a dual, round headlamp Sprint Fairing. Even if that wasn't possible, this motorcycle is gorgeous. 

All pictures sent in to Twisted Roads are eligible to win cool stuff in a random drawing. Where are the Harley riders? Where are the Susuki, Yamaha and Kawasaki riders? Send me your pictures! You too could win cool stuff. 

Send Photos to Mark them "Readers Photos" in the subject line.  

• Check Tomorrow For A Special Announcement Regarding the shipping of my new book — Conversations With A Motorcycle



Unknown said...

Jack, you have a photo of a German blonde on one of my bikes. Does that count?

Conchscooter said...

I have a picture of a broken Vespa, with a sturdy Iowa farmer in her undies. Does that count?

For fuck's sake get rid of the word salad while you're at it. Useless bloody scribble.

Anonymous said...

And who had the biggest wienie amongst the four of you? Thought we wouldn't ask, eh?

Anonymous said...

Dear Jack,
I'm proud of you for telling the story, but what I heard, it was the other way around. You talked so much the way i heard it, that Julie went deaf and misunderstood the pick up lines of the other guys and ended up in bed with them by accident to not hurt their feelings.
Best wishes
Father Seamus Confessor
Camden, NJ

Anonymous said...

Julie told me something completely different. She said the four of you were so busy talking over each other the only way she could get any attention at all was by taking her clothes off. And even that barely interrupted the flow of BMW related conversation at nerd central.
Funny how the story changes over time,
Bert Shluggins
Your Friend.

Anonymous said...

Did none of you notice Julie was a tranny? How drunk were you on BMW talk?

cpa3485 said...

Two Questions.
Does your bologna have a first name?
What's the third law? And is it unwritten?
I guess that's 3 questions.
Great read! Too Funny! Especially the tranny comment.

redlegsrides said...

another great story Jack.....

I wonder how that woman you guys sloughed off on each other would have done if on adderall? :)


Jack Riepe said...

Dear Conchscooter:

The story of your adventure with the blown Vespa, the only thing got blown on that trip, was taut and gripping. I think you should have ridden home on the farmer's daughter (in her undies).

I cannot see a security question or that stupid thing that tries to ascertain if a response is from a robot or a dildo. To my knowledge, it's off. And I can't find a setting guide on this fucking blogger.

Thanks for reading Twisted Roads, and for sending in a comment, such as it was.

Fondest regards,

Jack Riepe said...

Sear Anonymous:

My friend Cretin used to say that he had the largest dick. According to him, it was only 2 inches long, but 9 inches wide. He said it was like getting nailed by a personal pan pizza.

Fondest regards,
Twisted Roads

Jack Riepe said...

Dear Parson:

I once asked Cretin why the hell he didn't just walk away from this one like he'd done with so many others? He replied, "I wanted to prove to you that you would hit on a woman with another guy in a heartbeat, which you did. Plus, there comes a time when pretty women who buy into our respective lives of horse shit may get scarce."

The only thing I ever said to a woman in bed was, "Pleassssssssse!"

Fondest regards,

Jack Riepe said...

Dear Bert:

You seem to know something about the internal workings of BMW social circles. But it is obvious that you are still speaking from the perspective of one who has yet been asked to join. You also claim to know Julie, though not as well as I do. Am I correct in assuming your bike of choice is made in Italy and the preferred ride of singing Catholic nuns?

Thank you for reading Twisted Roads, and for writing in.

Fondest regards,

Jack Riepe said...

Dear Fred:

A tranny is simply a unit with the lower end out of alignment. I guess.

Fondest regards,

Anonymous said...

The second picture of the yellow Beemer looks like the parking lot for Mt Baker. It is one of the most beautiful places in the western US. There can be that much snow in the parking lot even in August.

It is one of my favourite places.

Jack Riepe said...

Dear CPA3485:

My bologna is named after the hero in a Roman gladiator movie: Hardonious Erectus. The third law of biker survival (Jersey City, 1975) is "If you can't think of one nice thing to tell a woman you've met at the bar for the first time, don't compliment her mustache." It was written at least once on the mens room wall in the Bucket of Blood.

Always a pleasure to hear from you Jim.

Fondest regards,

Jack Riepe said...

Dear Charlie6 (Dom):

In each case, that woman (Julie) thought she was trading up. And she was. I was a fucking huge improvement over Cretin. And Spider was the first of any of us to gain recognition for being an accomplished artist. And she is still with the last guy she met that weekend. Granted, he's deaf. But that's the way it goes sometimes.

Thanks for reading my blog and for writing in.

Fondest regards,

Jack Riepe said...

Dear Rogers:

I have a great shot of you on a bike at Key West, which I will run this week. But where is this one with the blond on it. Resend it to me and you might win a prize.

Fondest regards,

Webster World said...

Getting a rael friend is hard to do...getting laid is easy. Live be those laws.

Jack Riepe said...

Dear Webster:

I have discovered that it is much easier, and more likely, to get fucked than it is to get laid.

I miss Cretin every day of my life.

Fondest regards,
Twisted Roads

JZ said...

This is funny, "My friend Cretin used to say that he had the largest dick. According to him, it was only 2 inches long, but 9 inches wide. He said it was like getting nailed by a personal pan pizza." My brother puts it this way, "I may not be able to touch the bottom of the tuna can, but I can touch all the sides."

Anonymous said...

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good scence of humor. I spend most of my time on at bikerorsingle。C/o?M, and add all my photos there. My username

is the luckybikerbabe. Can you add me as a friend?.. Hope to hear from you soon. Take care and have a nice weekend!

Sash Johnson said...


This is your first post I've had the pleasure to read. I enjoyed it a great deal. It caught my attention as this happened to me with my husband Highway's friend when Highway and I were dating; the pass, but no completion. We were all in a ber, the friend was talking of leaving and I was heading to my car for a sweater. Highway asked his friend to walk me to my car on his way out.
I found myself at my car bent backwards, explaining to this drunken asshole, that I was in love, Highway is his friend, his friend trusted him and I WASN'T INTERESTED! He figured things out right before it got ugly and he and I never spoke of this again.
However, I told Highway the next morning. As hurt and disappointed as he was, he truly appreciated my honesty. He was crushed, however, by his friend's disloyalty. He said repeatedly, "You don't hit on your friend's girl."
We still ride with Bozo, his wife and daughter now and then. my only obligation is to Highway, not Bozo's wife, so I've never mentioned it. But the words Highway spoke live inside me and probably always will.

Charity said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Pirelli Motorcycle Tires said...

The rules are straight forward but it takes common sense to follow bike rules. I like he pictures of the bikes. Looks attractive. Waiting to see more photos from your adventurers.