THE KWIK-MART KHRONICLES

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Day Trippin'' started by jdrocks, Apr 6, 2018.

  1. joenuclear

    joenuclear Still here....

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    The cornflakes are just to filter the whiskey....
  2. jdrocks

    jdrocks Gravel Runner

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    c'mon, that's what rocks are for.
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  3. DresserCat

    DresserCat Adventurer

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    cornflakes or rocks as long as it gets filtered I'm all for it
  4. jdrocks

    jdrocks Gravel Runner

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    what's the deal with you guys, get your hands on some chunky whisky?
  5. mentolio

    mentolio Been here awhile

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    Real men filter whisky with their liver!
  6. jdrocks

    jdrocks Gravel Runner

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    From the field note archives, yeah, off topic a bit, but entertainment is where ya find it. The notes originated from my flights from Anchorage to Dulles, I had just delivered an inmate's moto from Denver to Anchorage, a memorable bike trip. It was an interesting experience, Mike (the owner) handed me the keys to his bike at the Denver airport during a 5 minute face-to-face meeting, we had never met previously. I changed into my riding gear on the concrete island in front of the arrival doors, drew some attention from the busloads of Chinese tourists passing by, guess they didn't expect to see some near naked dude standing at the curb.

    *****A recap on travel over the last couple days, man, talk about wasted...

    Translated to eastern time, I was up at 4AM Saturday (8AM eastern) in Valdez to get organized and catch the early ferry over to Whittier. From there, travel by ferry, moto, cab, foot, plane, and car, arriving at the kids house in northern Virginia at 2:30AM Monday. Do the numbers, I was sorta feeling it there towards the end.


    Some observations, after the joys of air travel over the last two days.

    When doing a casting call for the extras required in that next zombie movie, no need for auditions, just go to the airports I’ve used recently, hop on my flights, there's zombies by the thousands. None of that expensive makeup needed, no rehearsals either, they'll just be in character. Holler, "Zekes, line up over here", and the line will snake out the door and onto the runways.

    If your PHD dissertation is on Psychopathic Interaction in Contemporary Society, I can make it easy for you, and name the airports with a rich research environment.

    The gate attendant will not let your fellow passenger, and possible seat-mate, board a 6AM flight if they’re obviously under the influence of alcohol or drugs at that early hour.

    Some cowboys around, cowgirls too, and all I have to say is, ya got that five gallon head, don’t be buying that ten gallon cowboy hat. Plus, if you’re wearing shorts and tennies, leave the hat at home, except if you’re a cowgirl and those Daisy Maes are so short that they’re kinda stuck in Big Bend territory, then ya can wear the hat, nobody’s looking at it anyway.

    Demographics, I can help there too. Take sociopaths per thousand in the general populace, for instance. Heck, I’d name Seattle first, no close second, at least judging from what I saw at their airport. Some weird behavior going on, and I almost had a confrontation with some dude after having to explain that some practical limits were being placed on what he was doing.

    Airport personnel are required to learn the word "NO" in at least 30 different languages.

    It's possible to sneak a minimum of two steamer trunks disguised as carry on luggage past the gate attendant if she's busy explaining to another passenger that he doesn't have the right gate, or even the right airline.

    If you're decades past your prime, and insist on flying into Dallas dressed like one of those goofballs on Jersey Shore, at least have that oversize straight brim ball hat read something besides “GIANTS”, might keep ya out of the hospital. Don’t do the freakin’ fist pump thing the second you step into the terminal either, you’re in Texas, nobody understands or cares about Jersey.

    Never wear a short sleeve shirt or shorts when traveling by plane. Your skin may come into contact with the skin of your fellow passengers, Lordy, can't have that, trust me.

    Passengers fixated on their electronic devices will run slam into everything, never once noticing, or apologizing either.

    If a passenger smokes dope for about a week in a very small room, then boards a plane wearing the exact same clothes, the passenger in the adjacent seat will press the button for the flight attendant every single time.

    The caboose that some passengers are carrying where their butt used to be will not fit in today's airplane seats, heck, half of that thing won't fit either. You knew that ahead of time, so quit complaining to the attendant. Also, planes only carry a limited number of those seat belt extensions for fat people, so it delays the whole flight when the attendants have to radio for more. When they need dozens more, the pilot must start to wonder if the damn plane will get off the ground.

    An author writing a tome on BSC women for some obscure academic journal should fly more.

    Pilots get free ice cream at McDs.

    Those manning all the establishments along the airport food courts can't smoke, but apparently they are allowed to chew and spit in a cup while taking your order, both men and women.

    Judging from the preferred attire of most passengers, they don't own a full length mirror, or if they do, it's been broken for twenty years. On a related note, those transparent LuLu yoga pants were supposed to be returned, not worn.

    There needs to be some national contest exclusive to airline passengers called "The Ugliest Tat" award. Yeah, I know you love it and are ready to jump right out of your clothes to show off the rest of it, but some of the other passengers are getting queasy, and it's not airsickness.
  7. jdrocks

    jdrocks Gravel Runner

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    yeah, then they might make the mistake of turning it into sweat, which is about the worst waste of whiskey imaginable.
  8. jdrocks

    jdrocks Gravel Runner

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    THE KWIK MART KHRONICLES 91

    I’d been runnin’ damn hard for 750 miles, as in damn hard in the worst sort of traffic, the high speed and low speed mix of vehicles with a speed differential of over 30mph, in other words, the kind of traffic that turns the merely crazed drivers into outright lunatics, danger everywhere. With 250 miles to go, I was feeling the strain, bone weary from head to toe, so when I passed a Sheetz sign, no question, time to stop, I needed fuel and coffee, both pretty bad.

    I make a mistake every so often when I pick a place to stop, and I made a mistake today, bad timing. The Sheetz turned out to be three miles from the bottom of the ramp, and if I wanted Sheetz coffee, I didn’t want it anywhere near that bad. I blundered on, and finally found the place, and it was the least popular Sheetz I’d ever seen, a couple cars on one bank of islands, myself and another car on the opposite islands.

    I was just about finished with the fuel when I sensed someone behind me, and I turned to find a goofy looking shirtless kid wearing homie shorts, mangy dog at his heel, trying to talk to me. I say trying because I still had ear plugs in, couldn’t hear a damn thing he was saying. He was dragging on a cigarette so hard that the tip was glowing, holy crap, which way is the freakin’ wind blowing?

    No ignoring him, and I popped one earplug out in time to hear him say “…gas.”

    When I said “Gas what?”, he said, “I’m outta gas, can you spare some gas money so we can get home?”, and he pointed to a subcompact car way at the other end of the islands, hipster girl had her butt parked on the fender, watching him.

    I said “I’m broke myself, wish someone would buy me some gas, besides, that pack of Marlboros in your pocket is worth 50 miles of down the road gas money.”

    He shrugged, smirked, raised his hands in the universal WTF gesture, but we both knew that he’d been busted. He turned away, assumed the woe-is-me posture, and headed to the cars at the other islands, maybe some sucker would bite over there.

    I went in for my coffee, a three part XXL mix of the blackest they had, and when I got to the register, the guy taking the money had on a uniform shirt with his name on it, and underneath it said “Manager”. He said, “Nice day, hope you found everything great here.”
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  9. jdrocks

    jdrocks Gravel Runner

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    THE KWIK MART KHRONICLES 92

    Cross country in British Columbia, fuel right after the ferry, and I meet the owner who has a son playing college hockey in the States, he has the look and self assurance of a self made man. We talk for quite a while and he knows all the old time college teams, some of the same teams I watched play. I’m ready to go when two riders come up, one on a new KLR, out from Vernon for a ride on this perfect day. They must be selling some KLRs around here, this is the third local guy I’ve met this morning with a new KLR.

    [​IMG]

    This highway is going to take me up around the corner at Nakusp and then south again as I make a long run towards the border. Nice area, but for some reason there’s now some traffic, maybe everyone took the day off and went for a drive. The run along Arrow Lake is scenic and then I’m south on 6 again down to New Denver and some fuel.

    As I put fuel in, a gal goes strolling by, long stride and hips a swayin‘, and I’m immediately reminded of the southern girls from back home. Very well put together, with perfect fashion house attire, makeup, and hair, she had it and she knew it. Ok with me darlin‘, ya got it, flaunt the heck out of it. I gave her my most dazzling smile, and biker trash or not, I got a dazzling smile in return. A Southern girl would have done the same. I wonder if they have real BBQ up this ways, after all, it’s southern BC.
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  10. joenuclear

    joenuclear Still here....

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    Perfect! I hope they had great Q.
  11. NZRalphy

    NZRalphy I'm not half as good as I think I thought I was

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    Perfect JD! I'm pleased you have these started again. Thank you
  12. jdrocks

    jdrocks Gravel Runner

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    been places, got many more little Khronicle type stories from the road, just a matter of finding time to put it together.

    on the other hand, there are a few already written that pretty damn bizarre, maybe i'll put up a few of those, ya know, more cheap entertainment for those crazed enough to read this stuff.
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  13. joenuclear

    joenuclear Still here....

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    And we're easily entertained! But it IS good stuff.
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  14. jdrocks

    jdrocks Gravel Runner

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    y'all want a taste of what a little chaos looks like, take a look...

    THE KWIK MART KHRONICLES 93

    Fuel at the Cassier intersection, and kick it toward Watson Lake, ETA is now 3PM. I make a beeline to my tire man and when I tell him I need our two sets of tires changed pronto, his response is “Can't do it, maybe tomorrow“, and points to six stacks of new car tires that were ahead of us and ready to be mounted. This is going to call for some one-on-one negotiation. After 10 minutes of banter, he agrees to do one bike, and 5 minutes later after turning up the charm to the “Extreme BS” setting, he agrees to do the other, but only if we collect the tires and are ready to go in 15 minutes. Run the short distance to the Air Force Lodge-man, I didn't know that bike would go 70 in 2nd gear-collect the tires, thank them for all the help, and I'm back with time to spare.

    [​IMG]

    I go first, and pull the bike in the shop like I owned the place, get my tools out, and the front is off, changed, and back on in a flash. Move to the rear, same thing. I'm rushing around in a blur of activity, and when the rear is on, I tell Beemer that I'll back it out and tighten things up outside so he can get the GS right in.

    Beemer said “I'm not changing tires“. Huh? His rear TKC was shot too, and his Tourance was right there ready to be mounted. I said “You can't get anywhere on that TKC, we sure don't want to change it on the side of the road“.

    Beemer had jumped on the 1150, and when he turned to me he said “I'm going home. I'll send you some photos. Good luck“. He rode off east into the smoke, just like that.

    I was standing there watching him ride away when the tire man came up to me and said “What the fuck just happened there?” I said “Don't know, I guess he's going home“. The tire man was really pissed and I can't blame him. He had turned his schedule upside down to accommodate us, or now, just me. Beemer had stood silent while I negotiated tire changes on the two bikes.

    I was able to calm him down and gave him my old rear TKC, no good to me, but he could sell it for $50 to someone that just needed to get over to Whitehorse for a new tire. I realized that when Beemer had pulled out, he only had one spare on the back of the bike. We go on the hunt and find Beemer’s front Tourance tossed behind some old car tires on the side of the building. That tire had some life in it and might bring in another $75.

    If the guy was still pissed now, I don't think he was pissed at me. We talk things over a little, I apologize for the commotion and slip him a $10 bill, beer money. “You know you don't have to do that, eh” and I said “I know you didn't have to change my tires“. He reached in his pocket, pulled out a card, and wrote a number on the back. “If you come through this way again and need anything at all, call this number“. That's the way we parted, and that's the way I like to do it.

    I started solo, now I'm solo again. Ok, still got the cop motor, got the cop tires back on, let’s ride some freakin' place, and I was rippin' back west to the top of the Cassier, 6,000 miles to go.









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  15. joenuclear

    joenuclear Still here....

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    I guess it takes all kinds... That $10 might save you a lot of trouble someday.:thumbup
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  16. jdrocks

    jdrocks Gravel Runner

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    i went through Watson Lake again a few years later, the tire guy was now over in Alberta working the oil patch.

    as for the bike dude, using contemporary terminology, he got redacted, the black Sharpie cure-all.
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  17. JagLite

    JagLite Long timer Supporter

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    I'm sure you have some great riding "buddy" stories. :becca :baldy
    Finding a compatible companion is mighty rare. :hide

    Why many of us ride alone. :ricky
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  18. jdrocks

    jdrocks Gravel Runner

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    i've seen both sides of the riding buddy tales, some riders all you could ever ask for in both character and riding ability, others a complete freakin' nightmare.

    go on a trip, throw in difficult challenges, both physical and mental, and you'll find out right quick whether your buddy is made of steel or paper mache. riding ability aside, some men are born with a considerable amount of quit in their DNA.
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  19. jdrocks

    jdrocks Gravel Runner

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    THE KWIK MART KHRONICLES 94

    Down off the Hill, I'm very thankful to be back on chip and I can see what brought the Norwegian settlers out from Minnesota in the 1800s. I had come through driving sleet at the top of the mountain, then a harrowing pig-poop road surface on the 18% grade down the west side, first gear compression braking all the way, a feather’s touch on the rear brake, and it was still too fast. No guard rails here, a little error in judgment would let ya test terminal velocity for about 1000 feet.

    [​IMG]

    The land flattens out on this side and you’re surrounded by the Coast Range, seemingly in all directions. The road follows a rocky river running to the inlet, small farms flanking both sides. I didn't have a place to camp, so I was looking for a spot as I approached Bella Coola at the end of the road.

    [​IMG]

    Fuel first, and I stop at the only place I see in town right on the main street. Lucky, because the guy closes at 5 and I only beat that by ten minutes. I don't think many riders get out here, and he’s amused that I've come all the way from the east coast. “Have trouble on the Hill, eh?”, and when I tell him about it, he laughs. I ask him whether he gets out to Williams Lake much and his answer is to the point “What for?”. If I was tucked away out in Bella Coola, I might not feel like going anywhere either.

    Restaurant? And he points across the street “The best“. Camping? “Oh, ya need to go back down the road to the Riprap, eh.” Harbor? “Straight ahead, but we just had an opener and the boats are gone, eh“. Power wash? “On the side of the building, eh. Here, this will get ya started, eh.”, and as he handed me a Looney, I'm reminded why I love Canuckistan. He’s out the door and locks everything up. If I had rolled in 10 minutes later, I would have missed him.

    Power washed, then down to the waterfront, and I'm always attracted to these places. Not the yacht clubs or marinas, but the working waterfront. I like to see what the local men are doing. If it's commercial fishing, barging, marine construction, or the like, I want to know how they do it. The docks are quiet, but talk about a setting on this sunny afternoon. It would be tough to find a place to compare.

    [​IMG]

    Back to the restaurant, my stomach growling. The dining is both inside and out, with the tables taken by locals, I think I was the only tourist in town, dirty riding gear, covered with mud. And the young waitress, hey, it's just not my fault that I keep drawing these cards, but if you were sitting where I was you wouldn't complain, not for a second, trust me on that one. Lordy, where’s that menu? The food was excellent, as far as I remember.

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  20. jdrocks

    jdrocks Gravel Runner

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    THE KWIK MART KHRONICLES 95

    There’s nothing like crossing the border back into the States to change your mindset. The trip was winding down, but I’m still almost the width of the whole country away from home. I start east by riding south down 1 through rolling ranch country to the intersection with 2, and fuel. This is a newer station with a big mix of people, the common denominator being alcohol and controlled substances, with some mood enhancers thrown in.

    [​IMG]

    There are a lot of weird people hanging here, including a guy with a huge wooden cross on a cord around his neck. He must have found Jesus in the Quik Mart, because his prayers were answered, and he walked out with a 12pack in each hand. I move over to the side for a Pepsi and ice cream bar, and find myself witness to a pair of very large people doing a little free style wrestling in the back seat of a beat up car. Bing, bang, boom and the show was over, lucky for them, I think the suspension under that wreck was about to collapse.

    Freakin’ A, now I’m resolved to be off the road before the sun gets low, I don’t want to meet any of these people on the highway. Goodbye Eye-dee-hoe, gone to Montana, and I’m east on 2, Libby in my sights. Damn, never spent the night in the middle of a Superfund site, I’ll get to check that one off the bucket list.
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