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Bitterroot Bugle post categories

Bitterroot Bugle archives

unfettered, con-brio driving

I have registered for “March Madness” March 26th-27th in High Performance Driver Education group 1 (HPDE 1), which is the only option for drivers who have not driven with NASA previously and who do not possess a race car driver’s license. In this group we have an instructor who shows us the track in their car, then rides along in ours making sure we understand the rules, the track and how to drive where there are no speed limits, overtaking only where allowed. At some point along the way, first timers shed the ride-along added weight, but are still watched a bit for adherence to expected norms. Early March 25th, I expect to unload into Garage #7 which I reserved […]

Sunday morning rides … 2023

While my last post was about a long-ago Sunday morning ride, the tradition lives on … for fifty years or more. As far as days of the regular week go, Sunday is a good one for sharing worshiping the blends of man, machine and roads that sport bikes or touring-sport bikes meld into a cosmic beauty that only the bikers can understand. Recollecting a rather famous one from the 1970 Northern California somehow triggered finding an ongoing one in my neck of the woods in the here and now. I joined my first Sunday Morning Breakfast Club (SMBC) ride on July 29th. It was EVERYTHING I HOPED FOR… and more. I rode quite a bit farther downstream to the starting […]

Appreciating California Highway 1 in the good old days

I grew up in idyllic Sonoma County that nature graced with beauty and interest in every direction from border to border. Lightly traveled mountain roads, river roads and Highway 1 skirting the rugged coastline were perfect for 20-something sports car and bike aficionados. Running solo more often than not, I gloried in the capabilities of my series of old-school Porsches and a sweet-handling BSA 650. Rarely did the destination have any significance; the journey was everything. I was leading a sports car tour to the Big Sur campground for a weekend of watching premium sports car racing at Laguna Seca. This group of young couples had shoehorned our gear into 50s and 60s topless cars with similar luggage capacity to […]

simple pleasures in the workshop

Once in a while I simply get lucky as a photographer. I suppose as a modestly inspired amateur, that will be the only way I get a photo that really tickles me. Below is one of them. At my skill level, getting the lighting just right to comfortably light the background while focusing attention, and projecting a welcoming feeling has to be totally a lucky shot, but this one speaks volumes for the shop guy, and the car guy in me. I briefly opened the bay doors to admit the Honda for its overdue wheel swap from summer to winter. The woodburner in the far corner got the shop heat back up to a workspace comfortable 45-60 in no time. […]

Driving lowers intelligence … of Brits in this study

A study just completed of more than 500,000 Britons who were between 37 and 73 years old found that those who spent hours daily driving had a lower average intelligence than those who did not drive. These people also exhibited a faster cognitive decline than those who did little to no driving. These findings are similar to those who watch television for more than three hours a day. Researchers have found that sedentary behavior, such as sitting behind the wheel for hours at a time, can steadily reduce intelligence. If driving does not actively engage your mind, You are doing it wrong! Of course doing it right without the assistance of a Valentine One electronic warning device exposes good, active, […]

CRX unleashed

My mission of mercy was to ferry my granddaughter from her Darby Montana old folks prison to Arco Idaho where her dad met us to carry her on for a few weeks with the rest of her family. While I scored a zillion points with all of them for spending the time and automobile miles on her deliverance, I will admit here that the retired race car driver flogging the retired race car is no chore at all. Don’t tell the family. They are bestowing “Hero points” on me for “giving up my day” and putting the miles on my car. Not everybody is suited to ride with me, but the 17-year-old was in the right frame of mind, […]

the teflon couple gets sticky

From 1979-1981, Slick Willy was governor of Arkansas – then the youngest governor in the USofA. This is emblematic of the power his controllers yielded, as is the nickname many gave him. No wrong doing or scandals ever stuck to him while relative trivialities took down greater men before and after his rein. A man of little accomplishment but a master liar and immoral servant was placed in a position to protect the drug runners operating through the Inter-mountain Regional Airport in Mena, Arkansas. He served his masters well, thus was protected and promoted to POTUS. While there, The Teflon Couple was caught with Hitlary using an office in The White House to work against political enemies using IRS, CIA, […]

another car guy blogger

This morning I discovered Eric Peters’ website. Perhaps a half-generation younger, he is strikingly similar to me in many ways. He clearly understands and has plenty of experience with high-performance driving for the sheer delight in the act itself. He also fully comprehends The Nanny State efforts to remove joy, individuality and thinking from our lives. Best of all, he can express that and more with written words. His car- and motorcycle-guy stories are like reading my own with names and places changed to protect the innocent guilty. We both understand that speed limits good for cement trucks and motor homes are not real-world relevant to high-performance bikes and cars guided by skilled drivers. Con Brio driving focuses an alert […]

cafe BSA

Fairly fresh out of the service I finally got a chance to scratch that itch to own a motorcycle. Typical Ted, it couldn’t be one of the popular Hondas or Harleys. Somehow a Triumph 650 Bonneville was my ideal. I found a nearly-affordable BSA 650 Thunderbolt in the newspaper want-ads and, not knowing any difference, took an irresistible test drive. Not that I could wring anything out of it in my early motorcycle days, but the feel, sound, balance and agility were immediately apparent. Love at first ride. The transformative event in our relationship was when I decided it needed a tuneup (probably didn’t, but I worked like that). I found a Danish import Brit-Bike lover… How much for a […]

law enforcement is not the same as public safety

Patrol Bike (BMW R1200RT-P)It was a long day for me on and off my BMW. I made the Sunday Morning Breakfast Club run. That is an hour ride on straight, boring Highway 93 to the marshalling parking lot, then a con-brio group ride on lovely, winding Highway 12 over Lolo Pass for breakfast 47 miles away. After a lot of camraderie, having the group’s tech wizard get my keys out of the trunk I locked them in, we rode back. From Lolo, I followed one of my new friends to his yard in Missoula to tour a most amazing collection – around 100 classic motorcycles, only a few of which have been restored to excellent operating condition by an interesting […]

That Sinking Feeling

James Howard Kunstler wrote the essay below. I republish completely here on safe ground as you will quite likely decide you too like his writing, want to see some of the numerous comments to the essay, and will be interested in the books he has written. I made it easy for you to follow the links to the areas that interest you… including the Amazon James Howard Kunstler author page with all of his books new, used and electronic. I suggest you may buy them more directly from him to cut out the A-monster, but we don’t make much difference to them either way. I found this essay to express so much of what is churning and burning in […]

Gone RACING

I recently posted Gone Fishing using that phrase as a metaphor for my particular breakaway from the normal, everyday life. Here I use a much more accurate title. Racing is most accurately described as a competition wherein one tries to go faster than another. I will not be in a competition, but rather just running the track as fast as this man and my GT50 machine care to go – which is a whole bunch faster than normal people would drive within their comfort zones. I expect to get my ’87 Honda CRX around 115-120mph in the straight between TURN 15 and TURN 1, before braking hard for a corner likely to require me to be going 35-45 in […]

Gone Fishing

Normally clear studio surfaces speak of a cluttered life I am pulling out of my garage in one week… heading south to Utah Motorsports Complex for National Auto Sports Association’s March Madness. I am transitioning from The Beast to a much nicer, newer Z-71 optioned Suburban, The Z-Wagon. The Beast had an antenna farm on the back 1/3 of its roof and capability of running half a dozen amateur radios at a time on numerous different frequencies. I am putting some time, thought, energy and money into adding one multi-band radio to The Z-Wagon. Additionally there are numerous mechanical fix-ups that go with replacement vehicles. I initiated and had to manage a local emergency-preparedness radio exercise I called “Light Up […]

A Car Guy and the Sports Car Olympics

With a little help from my friend I produced a series of animated interview videos discussing sports car competition, the life and times of a G-Force-Junkie, a car guy and the joy of sharing times with other car guys. My wife really enjoys how enthusiastic I get when telling tales of the fun and excitement I have had whilst driving infernal-combustion-propelled vehicles. While of no interest to Yogis, meditators and poets, Car Guys and motorcycle buffs will get it. Sports Car Olympics 1 of 4 – Funkhana, venues, autocrosses I discuss the Funkhana, a competition that took place only at the Olympics, plus a bit on Olympics venues and autocrosses Sports Car Olympics 2 of 4 – Concours de Elegance, […]