Monday, June 30, 2008

My Life As A Biker

I’ve heard it said, that a woman becomes a mother the moment she feels the baby move inside her, and a man becomes a father the moment he sees his child. I think it goes something like that. Anyway, now that I have been through the experience twice I can testify of its truthfulness. Long before I felt any connection to the little bag-o-guts, my wife was already loving, thinking, and planning; forming a bond that was months ahead of the one I would one day begin.

There is a little less known saying that goes, a man becomes a biker the first time he hears the roar of a hog motoring down the street, but a woman becomes a biker's wife only after her husband secretly withdraws money out of their joint account, sneaks out, and buys a motorbike. I think it goes like that. I am happy to say that that day has finally arrived, and we are now the proud new parents of a Shadow Aero 750.

My life as a biker is everything I dreamed it would be; freedom, adventure, power, women, bar fights, hell raising, rock ‘n’ roll, wheelies, rumbles, petty crime, superior gas mileage, and the amazing feeling of wind in my short hair. Well, the gas mileage and the part about the wind are true. Everything else is stifled by my strong sense of civic and family responsibility. But for the most part, it’s everything I dreamed it would be.

To those who know me, it may seem that I remain mostly unchanged. They’re probably saying, “Sure he rides a kick-A hog, but it’s still the same old Ben. He still baths and everything.” But I have changed. For those who don’t own a motorbike this may be hard to understand, but I am a brother who comes from a vast fraternity of brothers. No, I’m not black. (Not 100% anyway.) I am the newest member of the family of bikers. To the layperson it may be hard to see the bond of friendship and love we share. (This bond doesn’t include bullet bikers. Nobody likes bullet bikers. Not even themselves.) The idea of such a bond is completely foreign to car drivers, but that is because car drivers hate each other. When you are in a car, the only thing that can make you angrier than social injustice and child abuse is a stupid driver. And when you’re in a hurry, everybody is stupid, except you. But such is not the case among bikers. We live by a higher law. And although you may not see the bond and higher law, it’s there. Don’t believe me? Next time you're driving behind a biker on the highway, watch what he does when he passes another biker. If he thinks you’re not looking he’ll take his left hand and point at the ground at a 45 degree angle.

I quickly learned that this was called the “Signal of Brotherhood” (S.O.B.). At first, I was certain everybody was pulling the “made you look” joke on me. But I figured this wasn’t the case when they never came back to punch me in the arm. Later, I determined they were pointing at Hell, as in, “See you in Hell, bro.” Again, I was mistaken. Finally, I learned that it was a signal of recognition and acceptance, as in, “Hello there brother. I see you, and you see me. We see each other and therefore we are not alone. I do not know you personally, but I love you and am loved of you. If you are ever in trouble, just perform the scream of the Norse god, Kerfluggon, and your brothers will be there, in all their raging furry, to fight on your behalf.”

Upon further research I learned that the S.O.B. was not always performed the way we see it now. Up until 1973 the S.O.B. was a low five. You actually slapped hands with oncoming bikers. You’re probably thinking an actual five is way awesomer than a non-five, and you’d be right. It was way awesomer. But the original S.O.B. was wrought with peril. S.O.B. deaths were not uncommon. But it wasn’t until Sonny “Bones” Wilcox, leader of the Southeast chapter of Hells Angels, S.O.B.’d a passing biker, swerved into an oncoming semi, folded like an accordian on impact sending his butt through the back of his face, and killing him instantly, that the biker community decided to change the way the S.O.B. was performed. Needless to say, the language is changing but the feeling and intent remain the same.

Despite my new adoption into the larger family of bikers, I am convinced that true arrival as a biker does not occur until one is part of a "gang." But rather than join and conform to the rigid traditions of an existing gang, I’ve decided to form my own. That way, I make the rules by which I live. Since the names, “Hells Angels” and “BACA” ,(which turned out to be an acronym about some sissy child advocates group), were already taken I decided to name my gang “The Pillow Fighters.” Right now I am the sole member of the Pillow Fighters, but we’ve got a lot of spirit and I see us doing great things. That said, we are now taking applications for membership and would be happy to consider anyone. So, if you own a hog and would enjoy the association, camaraderie, and fun-loving good times of the Pillow Fighters, then please leave your info and I’ll be in contact.


Friday, June 20, 2008

Deep Dialogue

UnMighty: If you had to pick a leader based on one quality, what would it be?
Student: Someone with a state of mind.
UnMighty: Which state of mind?
Student: What do you mean?
UnMighty: Tell us about your book.
Student 1: The book I read was called “Code Talkers” and it was about an Indian guy who served in World War 2 because America wanted him to use his language like a code that the Japanese couldn’t understand.
Student 2: What tribe were they from?
Student 1: I don’t know. Native American?
UnMighty: If you could do anything without failing, what would you do?
Student: Rid my rats of mites.

Wife: What are you writing about?
UnMighty: Twinkies.
Wife: (gasp) Are you writing about me?
UnMighty: Yes. It’s about how your body is starting to take on the shape of your favorite foods.
Wife: You are such an #*@#%&@.
(She sees that I’ve just typed this conversation.)
Wife: (gasp) Don’t you dare write that I just said that!
(Just left the grocery store with 3-year-old daughter)
Maggie: Gimme my donut. I want to eat my donut right now.
UnMighty: I'll give you your donut if you get in your car seat and act like a sweet girl. Can you be a sweet girl?
Maggie: That's me. Bing!

Sunday, June 15, 2008


Cash's father's day gift to me.

I discovered the surprise when I stuck my left hand in it.

Saturday, June 7, 2008

Food For Thought

“Twinkies.” A simple recipe: angel’s food and cream. I’m not sure what’s in “angels food,” but no one does; no mortal anyway. But if God approved it for his angels, you know it must be good. And I’m sure the cream came straight from the teat of a free-range cow. Twinkies just might be one of the greatest foods ever made by God and nature. At least that’s what I used to think, that is, until I learned any Tom, Dick, or Harry can read the real ingredients ON THE BACK OF THE PACKAGE! Yeah, I’m serious. See for yourself.

To my dismay, I learned that Hostess has been sticking it to their loyal customers for years. Still don’t believe me? Here are the ingredients as written on the package, word for word:
enriched wheat flour, sugar, corn syrup, high fructose corn syrup, Beef fat, crack, baby fat, bone fragment, toast, camel toes, silly putty, toadstool, hummus, tooth filling, Spam, pumice stone, paper, rock, scissors, Hepatitis A, B, and C, Sharpie, bike tire, sand, depression, lederhosen, dandruff, HIV, back hair, polio, communism, rubber-bands, scabies, racism, crude oil, turpentine, polite oil, arsenic, incest, full blown AIDS, and hatred.

Although I now have a better explanation for the negative feeling I experience after eating a package of Twinkies, I’m not sure what I set out to do by writing this post. I certainly don’t want to cause harm to the Hostess Corporation, or it’s stockholders. They’re just honest people trying to make a buck, same as anyone else. I do think the inclusion of some of their ingredients could be deemed socially irresponsible, what with the current health crisis and all. But I have to concede that I am not a baker and wouldn’t know the first thing about what it takes to make a world-class pastry.

It may be of comfort to some to learn that the ingredients are listed in order from highest to lowest content amount. This was a relief to me because, despite the fact that sugar and high fructose corn syrup are bad for you, they are significantly less harmful than say, turpentine or full blown AIDS which are present in much smaller quantities. That said, now I think I’m just being a bit of a “Nervous Nelly” and should stop worrying so much about what goes into my body.

After all, I didn’t acquire the body of a Greek god by eating my vegetables. I never acquired the body of a Greek god by eating twinkies, either, but I tried vegetables once and it didn't work, so I gave them up long ago. No telling what Mother Nature puts in that stuff.