Tuesday, September 20, 2011

What I did this weekend.

The weekend before last I spent my birthday weekend teaching new instructors how to present the classroom portion of our program. This last weekend brought a bit of variety. One of the other things I do is conduct what we call Site Compliance Audits. Pretty much what it sounds like. A few of us do these. We have to assure the Oregon State Department of Transportation that we're teaching the same program throughout the state. Each site needs to be visited once each season.

We do a check of the sites and the supporting equipment which includes bikes, fire extinguishers, and so on. We also offer encouragement and guidance to the instructors as they continue their journey towards excellence.

So I found myself headed North. It was dry when I left but the farther North I went the wetter it got. Eighty miles from home and soaking wet. Great start!

Lunch is a simple affair. In a Bobskoot style portrait, minus the bare feet, you can see me enjoying a prepackaged chicken salad in the luxurious Che' Shipping Container.

A man had brought his own scooter for the class. Pretty snazzy looking!

This creature was a one - squirrel cheering squad for the students.

A couple of interesting window reflections of the students in the parking lot. I seem to be open to seeing these kind of things much more often these days.

This sort of scares me. A brand new BMW S1000RR. Ridden to class by a student in our Basic Training. Which means he wasn't endorsed. The worse part is that I saw him ride one of our training bikes. Even at the end of the course this rider was struggling. I'd watch him ride the perimeter and inexplicably downshift to first without the clutch. The bike would understandably lurch and cause him control issues.

The BMW has ABS and traction control. I sincerely hope they do their job for the guy. In fact, I pray he doesn't ride faster than his Guardian Angel can fly until he gets his skills together.

Here's a photo I made in an effort to copy the style of Steve Williams.

A good looking scooter purposely framed by the tree leaves. Maybe not a great imitation but at least I created a photo by design instead of happenchance!

The trip home was interesting. I'd decided to take pity on a Firstgear jacket that had been hanging neglected in the closet. The fact that it had a thick liner also helped in the choice. I took the long way home. No surprise there, I suppose.

When I left it was still raining and Elvira's temperature display indicated 63 degrees ( F ). Apparently it hadn't rained at all farther south. By the time I got south of Salem the sun was bright and the display showed 84 degrees!

Only on a bike do we get to experience the full variety of our surroundings. Cool, eh?

Next weekend I'm off to Central Oregon to do another audit. Katie's coming along. Can't wait to see what adventures we'll have.

Miles and smiles,



bobskoot said...


I feel so honoured to think that I have a "style" to be mimicked. I like to think that we are all now more comfortable with our blogger friends and more willing to post photos of ourselves, where before we were pointing our cameras away, rather than, towards.

Just when I was following your Subway lead with healthy sandwiches you have now switched to "salads" ? I presume you are carrying your new Nikon dSLR everywhere you go. I am also bringing my Canon dSLR with me too in search of better photos, and also shooting RAW more.

all I can say is WOW, a Beemer S1000RR, I don't know if I could trust myself on one. Up here they were going to change the licensing procedures to limited HP for new riders on a graduated system so that a beginner/new rider could not purchase a bike with a higher weight/HP ratio.

Riding the Wet Coast

Brady said...


Are you kidding? The BMW 1000 is a widowmaker for a kid like that. Dear god, I've been riding for years and I don't know if I'd even ride one. I've built up a fair amount of self control, but a monster like that is just waiting to claw at you and tear the skin from your face. Wow. Wow. Wow. I cannot say that enough. I never thought I would see someone who actually owned one.

Raftnn said...

Geez Dan, I have to agree with Brady on that one. I would love to own a BMR 1000rr, but they can not be ridden anywhere to there potential on the road.....unless you are prepared to take considerable risks. Seeing kids like this just scares me shitless. A great blog though with some cool pics.

Dean W said...

So, ah, I'll see you in Bend, then?

Bryce said...

You, IronDad are getting much better in how you view and photography your world. And isn't that what it is about? Your reaction to what you see and how you respond to same either by
using your camera to record same, or ignoring a possible image in lieu of another location.

As to escorting Katie to Bend next weekend, may you have an enjoyable, relaxing ride and a
a positive outcome for event.

Geoff James said...

Nice to see you in a photo at last!

Like everyone else, a learner on a big bike scares the crap out of me. Are there any restrictions at all on capacity or power to weight ratio for any of the states?

Krysta in MKE said...

Belated happy birthday!

I'd love to try the S1000, in a controlled environment until I got the hang of it. But I've been riding 20+ years, including several liter+ BMWs.
What irresponsible shop / salesperson would sell one of those to a complete newbie?!?! Idiots all around. The rider doesn't realize he's outclassed, but the salesperson should have. (Or maybe the salesperson tried to redirect him, & the rider insisted?)

irondad said...


You're my hero, Dude! What can I say?

Take care,


irondad said...


I agree wholeheartedly. When a person learns to fly they start on a small Cessna, not an F-16.

Take care,


irondad said...


I agree with you and Brady, as well. Thanks for the kind words on the photos.

Take care,


irondad said...


Thank you! May you have a wonderful weekend, as well.

Take care,


irondad said...


Most people do not like seeing photos of me. Myself included. I just got carried away. Must have been lightheaded from having just a salad for lunch!

For a while Oregon played with a graduated license system. The dividing line was 500 cc. If you took that skills test on a bike under 500 cc you were restricted to that size range.

I think it proved too much trouble and it went away years ago.

Take care,


Stacy said...

And that's why insurance on an S1000RR is so damn expensive.

BeemerGirl said...

Good looking audit. Nice to be able to ride to work sometimes. You may say that squirrel was a cheerleader, but it looks downright evil in that image!