The Story of my Honda

The story begins in 2008. I was 18, the summer where I literally did nothing but drink and play video games and minigolf was about to end. I began my first year of college which was at a school near my home and soon found I had too much damn empty time on my hands. I applied for a few jobs(never having a “real” one before). And got a callback from a grocery store. They put me in produce which was actually really lucky. I’ll spare you the details but at this point I was going to school full-time, and working a part-time job. I managed to save about 50$ a month towards a bike. I’m not sure why I began to want a bike, I never rode one before, I know my dad had some before I was born but that’s about it. Maybe Easy Rider really did leave it’s mark on me early on. Who knows. But along this savings journey I took a class to learn how to actually ride, I’m glad I did. Months down the line I had about 800$ saved. I then saw this ad on Craigslist. While browsing daily of course.

It was in the dead of winter but found it was being sold by a bike mechanic at a vintage shop on the near west side of Chicago. I saw it, it looked tiny a midst the row of bikes there. Something told me this one should be mine. I quickly got a hold of a friend with a truck and within a week the bike was mine for 850$ USD, the world’s de facto currency. Seller had posted 1200 in the ad. I had months to wait for winter to end and did a bit to much tinkering with it. Eventually it got back to being fully sorted. A well respected Honda will last a lifetime. To this day my Triumph starts every other day when she wants and my Honda almost never has a problem. I love this bike it gave me everything, tons of a attention, the power to zip around the city and finally see it like never before. I love this silly little bike. I still love it, it’s my first and I could never part with her. 6 Years, a few thousand miles and she’s still going strong.

The story of my Triumph will be forthcoming but my 200cc Honda green motorcycle zips around Chicago and has never let me down. I’d never “chop” her or make her one of those sorry ass “cafe’s” kids are doing these days. She’s fine as is and has plenty of character. She has her flaws, the tank and side covers have a few chips, rear tire isn’t balanced and the rim has a small dent. Some of the controls don’t work right. The cable front break is often rubbish, and the welds on my aftermarket mufflers were down by a clown. Still she’s might and she runs like fucking a junkie who found a free stamp.

Over the years I’ve simply have to replace screws, batteries, tires, the throttle cable, fender stay, and that’s about it. Regular oil changes and new plugs and she runs great, haven’t even had to clean the carbs yet. Perhaps it’s time for a new chain,resealing the airboxes, and a new rear rim. One day I’d love to find another to strip down to nothing and try and get near to the ton, supposedly this bike can do over 80 stock but I think the mid 60s is the highest I’ve gotten. Ideas include throwing a larger set of carbs from a CB160 with pod filters and bigger jets and a larger gutted exhaust system.

Full Specs

1975 Honda CB200T

10,800Miles

Buy a well cared for 70s Honda now before they are all chopped into garbage our people believe they are worth their weight in gold.

Dylan’s Story Part 1

So Dylan awoke when his 4:45 alarm went off blasting the chorus from Bound For the Floor. He got up and got away with two snoozes before taking a shower at 5:03. Then he began shaving, bushing his teeth, fighting early traffic, finding a parking spot and waiting outside the front door at work for a boss to show up. The cycle seemed apparently deluded and not quite worth it for 10.25$ an hour. At least he was working on a decent young guy type wardrobe(kinda), but let’s face it the materials are shit as is the build quality not too mention nearly all the items he sold were items that have been felt up, worn, torn, creamed on, and now they sit in purgatory of a clearing house getting rid of the company’s left overs. Originally he started with this company when finishing up college since he was piss broke all the time and was hemorrhaging money on alcohol, food, and drugs up the ass. The part time endeavor served him after he graduated and was relocated and promoted to a full time gig at the busiest store in the district. Needless to say the powers that be allowed him the position but not much else. He had not thought about how long he had worked there but it had been a few years at least maybe 3 or 4, who knows, it didn’t matter.

It was a full time job, with full time benefits, but small room for growth and tons of thankless work. Not that Dylan needed words like “thanks” or “good job”, he just needed things done for his own sake of mind. He took his job seriously, perhaps more than he should have. The job was a reflection of himself however he never did lousy jobs no matter how big or how small no matter how personal or third party. He refused to sign his name to shit, unless he hit a point where he no longer cared. We all reach the “that’s it, I quit, I don’t give a shit” point but he hadn’t yet at this job. He had gotten close a couple times but ultimately he’s still there. For better or worse, this was the day the calm began to end. He foresaw the end after today. The end of a dinky clothes store just, 1 in a multinational who sells once expensive items for dog shit.

This isn’t the end but the start of the end………

The French Lieutenant’s Woman

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I recently caught the start of this movie on some dismal cable tv movie channel and was intrigued. I then did laundry, later I sat down when it was on again and watched the whole film. Similar to my ppost of Lilya I will mostly focus on one small bit of the film I caught.

In regards to the film I thoroughly enjoyed it and the excellent performances by Merryl Streep and Jeremy Irons leaves no questions, this is a classic. A couple stories of two lovers who spend more time in misery over the short time they DID have together. Well pretty much. I think that happens in life quite a bit, perhaps why it’s labeled a post-modern film, who knows. Sydney Pollack once remarked about how difficult filming the “happy times” in a doomed love story. The begining is easy as is the breakup, the tranquil and exciting “heart” of the romance is a challenge to leave on film. This film is no exception.

Anyway Jeremy Irons’ characters are both successful English men in two time periods. Be it cab, car, or train in either timeline he always refuses to depart when the transport stops moving. Watch the film, he ALWAYS gets off the carriage, train, or car before it stops moving.

This means to me his character can’t wait for anything. He wants it all now and then it quickly departs. He can’t stand still alone. He is in a rush for the woman he desires and can’t wait the second for the transport to come to a proper hault. I wonder why he is in such a hurry to seek love and happiness yet the sooner he achieves something like it, the sooner he is left in misery albeit with his wife and kids…….. Sometimes the best laid accidents were never meant.

 

In closing watch this film. It’s very good.

Lilya 4-Ever

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It had been referred to be 10 years ago by a classmate in high school. I had been Netflix friends with this individual. 2005. Back when Netflix was mail only. I quickly rented it and copied it. I didn’t even know but I’d already seen the director’s first film and liked it. Fucking Amal, the title attracted me and the good reviews shortly after it came out. I still love that movie. I guess I am a sucker for certain romances caught on film. Now consider this a spoiler filled mini review focusing on only one aspect. A symbol/theme.

Now to this day I am still terrible at identifying symbols in music, film, literature, and art. I haven’t forgotten the tools from High School and college especially but unless forced to identify symbols they are usually immediately lost on me, or never found. However, after watching Lilya one of the thing’s that hit me in the face was the McDonald’s symbolism.

In the film Lilya is treated to McDonald’s food and ice cream first by the man whom traffics her to Sweden by posing as a romantic interest. I recall the famous photograph of 100’s of Russians lined up in 1990 to try McDonald’s when it first opened in Russia. Fast food was a treat and a curiosity in the former Soviet Union, thanks to American capitalism and business tact. In the beginning of the film she is believed to be going to America with her Mother and boyfriend but she is quickly left to rot in the former Soviet Union, with no money and support.

Second after Lilya is taken captive in Sweden she cleans the apartment she is held prisoner in. A large McDonald’s bag and leftovers are among the items she cleans. The garbage remains belonging to the prisoner whom no longer lives there. A small burger join that started in America reaches desolate Russia and Sweden the same. You don’t get a chance to escape McDonald’s.

After Lilya is finished with her “customers” she is taken to eat through the drive through at McDonalds. Her “reward” for making money for the piece of human garbage who keeps her prisoner and sells her body to sick old fucks. Basically forced to eat McDonald’s because it’s fast,convenient, and cheap for that dirty Swede. Thanks to the American capitalist “give me convenience or give me death” ideology. They can thank the US later for the concept of drive-thru.

Three instances, a symbol I finally noticed and still think about. The McDonald’s is America, capitalism, freedom and a future. America would be a future with hope. Lilya’s only options to eat, as stated by her Aunt are to “spread her legs in town”. She does this without a complaint. A seemingly normal boyfriend leads to her becoming a forced sex slave. The freedom and globalization of America just goes to show it remains out of reach. You can taste American style food but you can’t live there. Instead it will taunt you and offer a reminder of useless hope that freedom is out there, but untouchable. You can taste America but you will never live it. It’s all the more worse when you learn the film was based on a true instance of events.

The Saint of Fort Washington

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So when was I a kid growing up we didn’t have the luxury of cable television, only whatever channels were broadcast over the air poor us right……The first world problems this led to was, Me not developing ADD, if such a thing exists and B. not knowing what shows and movies my classmates were talking about often.

 

Weekends were pretty dull at many points throughout grade school. I would often grab the Sunday paper and look at what movies would be on our select few channels. UPN,WGN, and others would all together maybe have 5 films or so. This was the late 90’s bear in mind. All I would have is the title and a short few word description of the film. I won’t even try to remember what the description of The Saint of Fort Washington was but I was intrigued and when next Saturday came around I sat down and watched it.

 

It features Danny Glover and Matt Dillon as two homeless individuals struggling around Manhattan. Dillon is quickly evicted by his slumlord and a schizoid man who finds himself on the streets with not a lot more than cigarettes and a camera sans film. He quickly finds Danny Glover’s character, a veteran homeless man whom shows him how to stay alive. The two become quick friends and help each other along the grim wasteland Manhattan was, gradually shelling from its poor reputation in the 80s.

 

This first time I saw the film at a young age, I can’t recall how I felt about watching it, sad I would imagine. But I knew it was a good movie and I liked it. I never forgot about it. Years pass and eventually it’s on a cable channel in HD,(my brother got cable and a nice tv when I was in High School sometime maybe like 2006). I sat down and watched it again, now in a more grown and conscious state I really got into the film and enjoyed it even more. It really stands out and holds up, maybe I like it more than I should be I can’t shake it, the story,the performances it still disserves more than what I imagine happened. Released in 1993, so-so reviews, poor box office performance, and soon relegated to spending the rest of it’s life unrented in Blockbuster video. I’m sure some 90’s video store junkies still have this cover engrained in their heads. Too bad they never bothered to rent it.

 

Alas I have given to little to no explanation or description of the film and why I like it as I do but it’s a great little gem that shouldn’t perish. I won’t attempt to rate it but I would advise one to find it and watch it when possible. Directed by Tim Hunter, whom direct River’s Edge, another favorite of mine. Both films are recommend. Definetly an underrated director.

Linda Manz and Me

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I never really heard of a woman named Linda Manz, nor recognized her. When I was roughly 12 or 13(2002,2003), and getting into Punk Rock, old movies, and such I was listening to a Dennis Hopper interview he had done with Nardwuar. I knew of Nardwuar from an interview he did with Kurt Cobain and Courtney Love in early 94’. Nirvana was the reason for my foray and serious interest in music and then film but anyway. In this interview Nardwuar loves to mention his native Canada, it just so happens Hopper had shot a film in Vancouver, called Out of the Blue. I’d never heard of this film and the Neil Young reference may or may not have been lost on me at the time. Nardwuar made explicit reference to the Pointed Sticks whom appear in the film (a pop punk band I now really enjoy). So I eventually Netflixed this film (through the mail) and saved a Friday night to watch it (I had plenty). The film was incredible, my 2nd Hooper directed film I’d see after Easy Rider. Needless to say the film floored me. At the time I loved the Sex Pistols and really dug the “fuck you” attitude of lead character Cebe. I must say I loved the film. I now sought after Pointed Sticks and Neil Young records. This wonderful little gem sat in my closet for years and maybe I’ll watch it in another decade when I’ve completely forgotten it. I once watched it again with a former friend who texted through most of it. I no longer hang out with him. Excellent film, check it out especially when you’re a teenager and hate every fucking thing. I’m not longer a teen but seem to be revisiting my attitude and feelings of 13-17 when I was at my most pissed. I might argue I’m still there.

Years and years pass…punk rock teaching continues…I branch out and explore more of music as a whole….don’t really limit myself to any one genre. I seek out the inspirations for the bands I like and go back as far as possible, now I’m a huge Iggy Pop and Velvet Underground fan. I’m in the home stretch for high school for junior/senior year. My interest/love in offbeat/obscure/renowned/foreign/gutter film continues. Seeking out as many movies as possible off the internet/Netflix/blockbuster/tape trading etc….Eventually I stumble across Gummo, little is known about it by me. It was mentioned several times in a most disturbing film thread and I often sought these films to see how bad they were. So eventually I seek it out and watch it alone one Friday/Saturday night. After watching it I knew I was a slightly new person. And the mother in the end seemed vaguely familiar. The film changed me mostly for the better and I was no longer a sheltered little Chicago boy, I had, through the film, a better understanding of humanity at its highs and lows. I mean Requiem made me feel lousy and all but this was more real and gutter, god knows what goes on in the backwoods ass parts of America. I still believe more in humanity over God but I could see how that would be difficult for many reasons. Regardless, I could write a paper on Gummo, probably not the Citizen Kane or Chinatown of an era but I’d call it a good film and worth seeing at worst. So this is probably 2007/2008.

Few more years pass…few college film classes done with. At this point I kept up with Criterion’s releases religiously as well as collected some. I once had over 100 DVDs but sold most of them on DVDTalk because I thought I was going to off myself or something. Kept the Criterion’s though…shows how gung ho I was about that endeavor… Anyhow I learn of Days of Heaven through the upcoming Criterion release and soon explore the man that is Terrence Malick. I first watched Badlands which had a very nice voice over narrative and visualized Starkweather for me. I didn’t know much about Charlie except for an excerpt in Please Kill Me where Legs McNeil compares him to Dee Dee Ramone and James Dean I think. The film is quite a nice delight and I still think about that black Cadillac Martin Sheen steals. There is something so visceral about his performance knowing exactly what he had done and what will happen to him in the end. Truly a man ahead of his time, kind of like that movie Ace in the Hole, a fucking classic also a Criterion. I probably wouldn’t know half of these movies if Criterion hadn’t released them. Lucky I started following whatever the hell they were releasing, despite not being able to afford many. Anyway so naturally next comes Days of Heaven and who do I see, the little girl from Out of the Blue! Same size and still she plays a child. Days is quite the beautiful film, few films offer such beauty that make up for lack of substance of story. Days is more impressionists and quite the film. I suddenly knew why people held Malick in such high regard. His two first films are exceptionally good. So now I finally learn this woman’s name and call it a day just wondering how she made it from Days of Heaven to Gummo to Out of the Blue! Just such an odd menagerie of films that I happen to all seek out no less! And she’s in all of them and very little else. What a coincidence I think…

Little is heard of hear from me for a while…more years go by…I continue seeking out film after film; eventually amass almost 500 DVD-R’s from Netflix. I would copy them and send them back the same day to get as many as possible. Aside from this however I find a nice forum of people preserving alternate edits and such of films and transferring Laserdisc extras to DVD that are no longer in print. I get a copy of The Game ripped from the Criterion Laserdisc with all the extras (along with Se7en in the same vein as well). Now this film drew me in right away, Michael Douglas as a very rich ass smart, sarcastic man who drives a BMW 750il. Anyway now in a scene he arrives at a home and a short woman answers the door smoking a cigarette. I knew it was none other than HER immediately and couldn’t believe how they fuck did she end up in this movie too! I knew then I would love the film before it even ended. As an aside I did like the movie. At this point I finally did some basic research on her including checking her imdb and Wikipedia page and just would often think how random and obscure is it I saw all these films she is in without even trying. She is in an odd but great mix of films how did she know to pick these and not some other crap? What a fabulous actress she is, I just thought I should document my strange unintended obsession with Linda Manz, an American actress.

So this is how I explored and discovered the majority of Linda Manz’s filmography. There will never be another actress with such a tight and interesting repertoire. She also appeared on the latest Ratatat album! At this point I knew I had to document how I find her in the most interesting/greatest places without even looking. I hope I see you again somewhere else without looking. I’m sure I could easily keep digital tabs on her but it just wouldn’t be any fun.

Hope

On The Way

Hope is on the way
In far less than an hour it will arrive
I’m on the train/I’m In the car/I’m sure he’ll come on time
Excitement is bellowing and I can barely concentrate
Sweet freedom and release is on the way, express
All debts settled, conflict condensed
I’m in heaven and heaven hasn’t even come yet.
This beats what follows, this I’m sure
But at least I’m free with help on the way.
All is well or will soon be.
Tomorrow counts for nil and always will.
My weightless thoughts/feelings/emotions/problems subside for the time
All is clear and all is near
Hope is on the way, never here to stay.

Hope

Hope

Never Go Fast Enough

Greetings,

Originally I wanted this site to be like bringatrailer.com, only for motorcycles. They had the ThrottleYard but it disappeared at some point. So originally I did that because I watch ebay and craigslist like a hawk. I then realized people interested probably do the same. Then I thought about being like The Selvedge Yard wherein I write articles similarly themed because I like that kind of stuff he does. Now I have finally decided the site will be a personal blog posting whatever I want for me. Be that poems,songs,short stories,pictures, updates on my vintage motorcycles when they break down, frustrations, film criticism, work problems, personal health issues and more. In effort to not be a copycat and to somewhat put some stuff “out there”.

Enjoy

On the Street

On the Street