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Yes, this is a smidge tasteless.

It's also pretty funny if you're a motohead.

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We went up to [ profile] jorhett's place on Friday evening and hauled him out to the Phoenix Uniform Club's annual "Leather and Uniform Ball." It was a blast. Afterwards, we went to the Edge. It was kind of a mob scene, so we only had one drink there before bailing.

Saturday afternoon, picked up K's newly-repaired bike. Looked at bikes that we didn't have time to test-ride. Maybe some other day.

Afterwards, went to [ profile] lobolance's garden party. It was a lot of fun.

Spent today at the Westercon 60 meeting. It was a lot of long. The convention will come off, but getting to this point hasn't been fun.

I haven't got the energy for more details.
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Not going up to San Francisco. I'm traveled-out, and [ profile] kproche has to finish a monster.

Going to run to Helimot to order new boots. They don't stock the Daytona Travel Star GTX, but I expect I can get them to order 2 pairs. When I was talking to one of their guys on the phone yesterday he wasn't too helpful, but a visit to the store will get better results. They're the most comfortable boots I've ever owned, but my current pair is trashed.

I also need to get new gloves. Both pairs are wearing through the thumb and fingertips.

Going to pick up a fan for the living room. The heat is bearable, but it would be nice to get more than just the bedroom cooled down at night. Also a 23"x46" screen to replace a broken one in the studio.

Going to pick up supplies for the Conzilla [ profile] loeg party. Also re-sort the party boxes. Try to get a bottle of Opal Nera and make up "Coffin Liquor" labels for it.

Rearranging the wine cabinet. I've got some wine that should have gone in a few weeks ago, but I hadn't shuffled things to make space.

Maybe, just maybe, running up to Livermore on Sunday; we've got at least one wine-club pickup waiting for us.
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...but there's something fun about riding in the middle of a hail-storm.

As long as the hail is only barely split-pea sized.

As long as it only happens once a year.

Or less.

And as long as you don't have to do it for more than about 15 minutes. By the end I was getting pretty cold.

The storm today was enough to build up about 3/4" of hail on the streets while it was coming down (in all of 20 minutes). It all melted as soon as the storm ended.

It's far less slippery than the first rain of fall when the dust and oil hasn't washed off the roads yet. When the hail is coming down hard, it's a touch noisy and a bit stingy.

On the down side, the hail collects and then melts, so leaky zippers are a much bigger problem. I've got a few wet spots on my jeans.
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Well, we were supposed to spend the weekend cleaning house.

The bathroom got done (but it wasn't far gone) and some work got done on the kitchen. Some laundry got done. I may do something with the bedroom before I go to sleep.

But things just came up.

Saturday morning I had to go over to Cal BMW to pick up the R75/5. Two or three weeks ago, it decided to stall and not start again when I was trying to leave work. It didn't start when I came back 3 hours later, nor the next afternoon. When Kari came by with the truck and trailer on the second day, it started fine, but I sent it anyway. Better safe than sorry. The couldn't reproduce the problem, flooding doesn't make any sense (it would have started 3 hours later), but it's still running and they tightened up the front end a bit.

After that we decided to take care of the wine buy for the mini-conference that [ profile] kproche's boss is running in two weeks. That meant stops at 5 Livermore wineries before 5:00 closing time, and we were leaving SJ at a little after 2:00. We snagged a bunch at Bent Creek and Cedar Mountain (along with our club pick-up and the last magnum of '92 Cabernet Sauvignon left), stopped at Steven Kent for ourselves (picked up a club pick-up and a few extra bottles of the Contemplation #2), hit Mitchell Katz for sparkling wine (it was on the buy list) and finished up the buy at Thomas Coyne (where we picked up some of the new Charphony for ourselves and a bunch of Vino Tinto Barato).

Did dinner at Vin Santo; fabulous as always.

Sunday breakfast at OPH, clam pancakes. Got aforementioned cleaning done.

Went up to Alameda to join [ profile] mzmtnlion, [ profile] rivetheretic, [ profile] danaoshee and a few others for [ profile] jkuroda's birthday. We started at the New Zealander, a pub specializing in Hobbit steaks New Zealand pub fare (meat pies, sausage rolls, and really nice mini-pavlovas for dessert). Everybody was drinking tea because the next stop was...

...St. George Spirits.

St. George is now open Sundays, and the product line has grown just a smidgen. The eaux de vie were not particularly popular with the crowd, but opinions changed when the vodkas came along. The liqueurs were quite popular, and the new (Lot 5) malt whiskey was also well received. The whiskey is now a bit more scotch-y, with a noticeable smoke from the used bourbon barrels.

The new additions were definitely interesting. The "Heirloom" apple brandy was OK, but not as good as Germain-Robin's apple brandy. The Wasabi Vodka was just insane. It's flavored with real wasabi rhizome, not just green-tinted horseradish, and if you know the difference you can tell. It's very green. More unusual was the "Qi" tea liqueur, flavored with Lapsang Souchong tea, mandarin orange and Tahitian vanilla. It's strange but tasty. Finally, we got a secret taste of "De Profundis," a bottling of 20-year aged pear brandy (it's not eau de vie anymore, it's got too much age on it). It's amazing, but there was no way I was buying a $200 bottle this afternoon.

They're also doing a perfume (they are distillers, after all) with Scharffenberger Chocolate. It's really expensive, but it's chocolate perfume, really chocolate perfume.
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The mention of the VW GX3 concept car on the Internet BMW Riders list has spun off all sorts of other mentions of small, fast, minimalist cars. If only you could get an Ariel Atom in the states... The likelihood, though, is incredibly low.

It's an open-wheel, open-bodywork, open... well, almost everything 500 kilo 300bhp speed-monster that does 0-60 in just over 2 seconds, and is apparently well-behaved enough to be a daily driver (if you don't need a roof and don't need to haul much). I doubt it's got the fuel efficiency of the VW, but with that sort of performance, who cares?
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No, it's not really moto, regardless of what they say, but the VW GX3 looks interesting...
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Have I stepped into an alternate universe? Is the bike show not in San Mateo? Is it not on Veterans' Day Weekend?

It's in San Jose, this weekend.

If [ profile] kproche is stuck herding French doofs in the office, I may be going by myself.

Anybody else interested in going? If we go early (10:00am) on Saturday, there's supposed to be limited free bike parking.
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For those of you who weren't there (and that's everybody) the K75S (yeah, that's an old picture of [ profile] kproche, it's his bike, and I don't think I have a picture of me on it) decided to throw the fan and eat the radiator this weekend, so it's in the shop.

The R75/5 is still waiting to go into the shop for a new clutch (there wasn't much left of the clutch when I bought it), and the R100 doesn't have any gas in it (and is buried under stuff in the garage; I should really start it up and make sure it's still running well).

So... I've been taking light rail in to work, which is good most days. Today, however, I have a visit to my optometrist scheduled, and transit out there is a pain.

Hence, I'm borrowing K's R1150R for the day.

It's an interesting ride.

The pegs leave me folded up pretty much, so I don't think I could take too long of a ride on it; my legs would give out.

The servo-assisted brakes are really cool; they're actually relatively subtle but if you grab a big handful you stop.

The lack of dive in the front end isn't as disturbing as I expected.

It's got plenty of power and is very smooth for a big twin, but it does get a nasty vibe in the footpegs around 5k.

Transmission is very smooth and very positive-feeling, but I'l admit that I've become accustomed to how the shifter on the K locks if you try to shift below 1 or above 5.

Switchgear is yet again different than previous models. I think I like the non-standard gear on the K better; it's less of a stretch for me.

It's got a surprising amount in common with the handling of my /5. A lot less flex and springiness, mind you, but still very light (feeling, I know it's not really that light, but it's a lot lighter than the K) and ready to corner quickly.
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Older Triumph, possibly a T100C or a TR6C. Yes, it has that 2-into-1 exhaust with the birdcage around it.
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...parked on campus:

Honda CB450 K1 model, I think

Triumph Tiger 750, yes, still with the brake and shifter reversed by most standards.


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Andrew T Trembley

June 2011

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