Go Skate! – Vert maestro Steve Caballero shows off his immaculate pre-unit ’52 Triumph custom with builder Bryan Thompson giving it a thumb’s up. The nostalgia oozes all over the bike: from the script tank badge and gold pinstriping, to the girder forks and saddle-maker leather seat or the leather handgrips with reversed control levers. It’s called ‘The Scout”. Good name.
A girl could feel special on any such like
Said James to Red Molly, my hat’s off to you
It’s a Vincent Black Lightning, 1952
And I’ve seen you at the corners and cafes it seems
Red hair and black leather, my favourite colour scheme
And he pulled her on behind
And down to Boxhill they did ride
Said James to Red Molly, here’s a ring for your right hand
But I’ll tell you in earnest I’m a dangerous man
I’ve fought with the law since I was seventeen
I robbed many a man to get my Vincent machine
Now I’m 21 years, I might make 22
And I don’t mind dying, but for the love of you
And if fate should break my stride
Then I’ll give you my Vincent to ride
Come down, come down, Red Molly, called Sergeant McRae
For they’ve taken young James Adie for armed robbery
Shotgun blast hit his chest, left nothing inside
Oh, come down, Red Molly to his dying bedside
When she came to the hospital, there wasn’t much left
He was running out of road, he was running out of breath
But he smiled to see her cry
And said I’ll give you my Vincent to ride
Says James, in my opinion, there’s nothing in this world
Beats a 52 Vincent and a red headed girl
Now Nortons and Indians and Greeveses won’t do
They don’t have a soul like a Vincent 52
He reached for her hand and he slipped her the keys
He said I’ve got no further use for these
I see angels on Ariels in leather and chrome
Swooping down from heaven to carry me home
And he gave her one last kiss and died
And he gave her his Vincent to ride
PopBangColour – Bold artwork in strong colour carried out with a confident hand. This oil pastel looking piece is as lively as an itchy wool sweater. Just enough detail to feel real yet in a looseness to seem that the engine is ticking over.
The artists site is Here.
Behind the Bars – perfect April weather today. A warm breeze wafted across northern Illinois With the engine purring like a cat. Forsythia blooming sunshine yellow and redbud dappled in complementary purple. Brushed against the Wisconsin State Line along Russell Road and swung back down along the Lake.
Louche Lady – I’m sitting in the car listening to the haunting sound of Elliot Smith and the fresh sunny April skies hint at the seasons awakening. Trees are budding in response to earlier rains. Grass smells of growth. Good Friday sits astride Spring from a receding chill with the promises of warmth ahead. Hope I can get out on the bike this weekend.
And it’s goodnight from him – Ronnie Barker is captain of this endless tandem passengers by other bowler hatted riders as well as Blue Peter favorites John Noakes and Lesley Judd. The front end is definitely motorcycle rated and the structural truss frame very engineered. This was October 5th 1972. The Vigintipede (21) was used by Littlehampton Rotary Club to raise money for the RNLI and the Blue Peter lifeboat.
Screenprint- artist Ryan Quickfall has some evocative motorcycle illustrations. Go to his site Here. This particular one is of AMA great Gary Nixon.
Century – A private of the Royal Engineers on his motorcycle. The chevrons on his lower right sleeve show he is in his third year of overseas service… One Hundred years ago today saw the start of a British offensive at Arras which, by its end a little over a month later saw close to 400,000 losses and casualties on both sides. The motorcycle is a wartime stalwart Triumph Model H.
Edward Thomas a notable wartime poet was killed in action this day. His work extolled the virtues of the English countryside and its invigorating open airs. One of my bosses twenty years ago was the godson of Thomas’ nephew, born in May 1918 he was named after his uncle.
“And I rose up, and knew that I was tired, and continued my journey”