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Crashing at Corral Canyon


A few weeks ago we took a great trip to Corral Canyon with Aaron, Jeff and Kaden.  Evan still had Cam’s KX250F so he had something to ride, and I was itching to try shooting some video with my new GoPro HD helmet cam.  I picked it up as an Amazon Gold Box deal during Christmas for like $160 and it was a hell of a deal.  I scrounged up a 32gb SD card at Frys so I could store enough video for a trip, and was super excited to record some 1080p ripping!

 

We loaded up and headed out on a Sunday morning with Kaden ready to try out his new CRF70 (with an 80cc kit) that Santa brought him last year.  He just grew up past his crf50 and was super excited to be able to keep up with the 450’s.  Pretty soon this kid will be outriding all of us!

 

Out of the hours of awesome video I collected, there were a couple great shots that really took the cake.  One incident I just happened to catch by accident.  We were gearing up for a ride, and everyone was on their bikes waiting for Jeff to get ready so we could roll out.  I had luckily happened to fire up the camera a few minutes before, and was just waiting to get riding.  I heard Jeff fire up his YZ250 and heard the two stroke whining like a little bitch.  Next thing I know I hear the the thing redlining, and the bike comes flying into my peripheral vision and then right in front of me, almost hitting Aaron who was just sitting on his CRF450R.  Don’t ask me how I managed to get this awesome incident on video, but luckily I did (and in full 1080p glory!).   Check this out:

 

 

This is why god made HD cameras!

 

Before we started riding, the guys were ripping on me for getting a camera.  Saying that since my crash at Gorman a year or so ago, I was a huge pussy, and  I just needed the camera to prove it.  I said thats exactly why I got the camera, so I could document all of my crashes.  I later came to regret that joke, because I seriously ended up using it to record my crashes.

 

Evan and I passed a group of FJ’s who were wheeling on some of the trails, and came to the top of a pretty steep mountain.  We began creeping down the steep side, and that’s when disaster struck.  I hit a soft patch of dirt and loose gravel and went straight down, jackknifing the front wheel.  To make matters even worse, the kill switch on my 2004 CRF450R had been shorting out, and causing the bike not to start.  So I had the kill switch unplugged so the bike would run.  However when I fell, the bike fell on me, pinning my right knee and foot down under the bike, with no way to move.  It took a good while to turn around and get the kill swith plugged in so I could stop the bike, and then luckily Evan was able to come back up and pull it off me.

 

Anyway, check out how stupid I am…

 

 

Since I got this awesome helmet cam, you can look forward to sweet HD videos of my misadventures for years to come! 🙂

Same Old New Year


Man so many things I have been wanting to post about, but just been so busy as usual.  It seems like every couple months I get really stoked on blogging and keep with it for a few days, and then shit comes up again and I can’t find the time to do it.  I even thought about making it my New Years resolution that I would post to my blog every day, even if it was just a quick update about shit that I did that day.  Well, 10 days into the new year, that obviously isn’t happening.  I’ll just make a list of the shit I’ve been wanting to update about, and elaborate about the ones that are interesting…

  1. I dislocated my shoulder for the first time since the surgery last feb.  I have no idea what happened, but I think after riding in the desert all last weekend with KJo I just beat it to death (even though it didn’t hurt after riding all day), and on Tuesday I was getting into the shower and just reached out with my left arm to slide back the shower curtain and it dislocated.  It hurt so god damn bad.  It was dislocated for about 2 hours, I could not get it back in and finally went out and got in the spa to try and get it back in the socket.  Usually its easier to get it back in when submerged in water so it takes all the weight off, but it still took an hour in the spa to get it back in.  Finally got it back, but it has been killing me ever since, feels like a nerve is pinched and just intense pain shooting down my arm to fingers, and the fingers on my left hand have been pretty numb.  Of course all of this happens right now when I don’t have insurance due to my recent job switch…
  2. Things at ESET are falling apart. I finally left ESET after nearly 3 years of employment.  It was a great job and probably the best way to start my career in the Information Systems field, and I definitely gained some irreplaceable experience, but things were just not working out right there.  Although in 3 years I had gained a “management” position, having 2 full time employees and multiple interns reporting to me, my official title never progressed past “Supervisor”.  Call it superficial, but I became accustomed to seeing employees with less than half of the tenure I had with the company be promoted on a regular basis, yet I never received a promotion or managerial position based on merit.  Even my supervisor title was only given to me after it being denied once, and then I had to ask for it the second time.  Other departments had managers who were younger and less experienced than I was, yet I was always told I needed to “put in my time” in order to reach the position I wanted.  This started to wear on me, as I was one of the original employees of the company, nearly 90% of employees there had less experience than myself and a few others, yet I felt like I was being passed over for no good reason.  I had reached a point where I was not learning on a daily basis, and seemed to be more in maintenance mode.  I knew at this point that it was time to see what else was out there so I could expand my horizons and see how my career could progress.  It was getting hard for me to be happy staying in an atmosphere where I saw new people being hired for positions that existing employees were denied for, for reasons that amounted to nothing but blatant lies.  After 3 years in the industry it became obvious we were grossly underpaid compared to standards (not even reaching the 5th percentile in most cases), and it really became frustrating the way that certain new employees were regarded differently from those that had shown loyalty for years.  These concerns, in addition to feeling stagnant in my career, led me to look elsewhere.
  3. I started my new job! About 3 weeks ago I started my new job at Defenseweb.  I left ESET to pursue an opportunity at a government defense contractor, and I couldn’t be happier.  I always wondered what it would be like to work somewhere that I was stoked to be at work, and now I know – its awesome!  Unlike my previous position where I was regarded by my boss as the kid he hired out of college, I am regarded as a professional with a legitimate, valued opinion in all matters.  (Tangent: At ESET I never felt like I was taken seriously, even though I was given (After asking and being denied multiple times) a supervisory position, I was never paid accordingly for it, or told that I was doing a good job at it. The fact that I went back to school to pursue my MBA and further myself in education was not appreciated, hell my boss would not even take the time to write me a letter of recommendation for my application! Not to mention a fellow employee was hired as a business analyst to help keep my projects on track, and she lied about being in school for her MBA telling blatant lies supported by our supervisor to keep everyone ignorant of their lies.) My supervisor at Dweb has faith and trust in me, proven by just the tasks and projects I have been assigned in merely 3 weeks.  I am working in project management on a Army contract using Virtual Worlds (Second Life) for interaction and communication between deployed soldiers and families.  Not only do I really love and enjoy the work that I’m doing, I can really put my organizational skills to work in the field of project management.  There are tons of additional perks to this job as well, I work a 9/80 compressed work schedule, so I get alternating Fridays off, as well as great benefits, an on-site gym and pool, and a huge kitchen stocked with red bull, sodas, water, coffee….its awesome!  Such a bright, young, and new office that reminds me of the dot-com offices of 2000.  There are many employees around this company that have been there 4-5+ years, which shows me that this company really takes care of their employees, and I can see people go the extra mile to help the company out.  A great second job and move in my career, I can’t wait to see where it takes me!
  4. I had to tell my neighbor, Model T Jim, that his friend (the original owner of my house) was dead. The other day I was working out front on my dirt bike, when I noticed an old man slowly walking up the driveway.  I said Hello and asked him if I could help him out.  He asked if Jim McFarlan was still around because he hadn’t seen him lately.  I let him know that Jim had passed away in  2006 and that I doubted he  had seen him recently.  Apparently Jim is our neighbor who used to take walks and talk with Jim McFarlane (The original owner of my house, and he built it with his own hands).  After explaining this to Jim, he started checking out the cars we are restoring, and we got on the topic of the Model T.  As awkward as it was telling old Jim that his buddy had passed away 4 years ago, we got off on a great conversation about the beauty of the Model T.  He told me all about the first T he bought when he was 15 for a grand total of $5 – pretty much the same story my grandpa told me, where him and his 2 brothers bought their first model T for $15, they each contributed $5 and were always working on it to make sure that it was running on their day to drive it.  I always look for Model T Jim when I drive down the street now, and say hi when he’s out for a walk.  A great old guy with tons of knowledge about the cars I love.
  5. Finally got Jollicloud installed on my NetBook, and WOW is it the best OS out there for netbooks! jolicloud1229183481701ft7[1] I have been waiting for a stable version of this distro to come out for quite a while, and it finally has.  This is by far the best netbook linux distro, and its based on Ubuntu.  It seems very stable, and primarily uses apps that rely on the cloud so you aren’t doing much locally.  There is some really cool twitter, gmail, and other google apps integrated that make it very quick and easy to get at the stuff I do most often.  I would definitely recommend it if you have a recent netbook – works great on my ASUS eepc:
  6. My ‘56 and Evans ‘55 are going to be featured in the March edition of World of Rods! Jason was down this weekend and did an unbelievable photo shoot. My good buddy from home, Jason Mulligan, was down a couple weeks ago, and he is the editor for Street Trucks magazine.  One of their sister publications is a hot rod magazine called World of Rods.  I’ve been joking with him for months about getting my car in a magazine, and he finally pulled some strings and got our Star Chiefs in the March edition of the World of Rods magazine.  They wanted an article about twin brothers having twin cars – ironic indeed, but it should turn out to be pretty cool – we went down to fiesta islands and took some great shots of the cars on the beach.  I can’t wait to see how it turns out, I’ll definitely have it posted up when its done.
  7. Jason also got my F-150 to be used in a tech article for Street Trucks mag, They are installed AFE intake and full cat-back exhaust system for FREE! As if the magazine deal wasn’t cool enough, Jason had a company that advertises in Street Trucks who has recently come out with a full cat back exhaust system and intake for the 2009 F150.  They wanted to do a full tech write up on the install and then dyno it and show the gains.  He was able to get my F150 to be the candidate, and its going up to AFE on Friday to have it installed and tested – for free!  I can’t wait to hear what this bad boy will sound like with the new exhaust system, and I think the intake should provide some decent performance gains.
    49-43015_400[1] 54-11622_400[1]
  8. Check out these videos of the intake and exhaust:

My CRF Adventure


A couple weeks ago, Moto-Cam, Office Kjo, and myself headed out to Superstition to get dirty.  I was riding my ’97 Honda XR400, Moto had his ’02 KX125, and KJo was bringing his new (to him) ’03 CRF 450R.  We go out there around 9am and proceeded to bomb around out on the dunes all day.  It was a badass trip, good weather, and we had a lot of fun.  I had the opportunity to ride Kjo’s CRF, and this planted a seed in my head.  I loved my XR400, but being out in the desert really made me realize that its a hard core trail bike, and is super heavy – not suited for desert riding and jumping at all.  It also happens to be one of the few bikes that has a street plate, which in CA can not be done any more after 2003.  Therefore, its super valuable for someone who wants to do dual-sporting: riding on the freeway to your destination, then jumping off road, and riding home afterward.  However, I rarely used it for this.  So I put it up for sale, in search of a CRF 450R.  Here begins my tale:

I put my XR400 up for sale, and had a ton of calls on it, since the plate made it super valuable (not to mention it was in awesome condition).  I sold it quickly for $3000, and wanted to use that money for buying a CRF, without having to spend any additional ca$h.  I wanted to get an ’04 or ’05, just to have something relatively new, and I knew if i waited around I could find one in that range for a great deal.  So I start checking around on Craigslist and Cycle Trader, and come up with a couple I want to check out.  One guy in La Jolla has an ’05 for $3100 firm, (Link Prob won’t work for long, hes reposting like crazy) which is a great price, but I figured he would budge $100 to meet my budget if I showed up with cash.

The other guy has an ’04 in Lakeside for $3300, but was more willing to negotiate on price, and was throwing in a brand new paddle, and some riding gear.  First I head out to La Jolla to check out the ’05.
Its an old guy, who has 2 other bikes in his garage, apparently he picked up this one for $3200 a week prior and then scored a good deal on the other two, so just wanted to sell this one asap.  I liked it, so I offered $3100 cash.  He won’t budge on price, and tells me I’m basically stupid if I look anywhere else because I won’t find another ’05 for anywhere near $3100.  Which is pretty much true, but I told him that $3k was my budget, desert season is about over, so I didn’t mind waiting to find something in my price range…so I walked.   This really pissed the guy off.

I headed from La Jolla out to Lakeside to check out the ’04.  The guy was really nice, had owned the bike for a few years, knew the history, and it was super clean.  I offered $2800 and he accepted it.  While the filling out paperwork I get 4 calls from a  La Jolla number, and finally answer.  Its the previous guy who decided that he will now accept $3000 cash for it right then.  I told him I was going to get something else, and he says “well you offered me $3 for it earlier, and now I will accept it”.  I tell him that my offer was valid 3 hours ago when I was standing in his garage with cash, and he declined it.  I purchase the ’04 and am pretty satisfied.

The next day I get an email from the old dbag in La Jolla. 🙄

I understand you are not in a hurry but will you find a better deal than mine later?  I felt I got the best 450 deal a week ago at $3200 so at $3000 I think it is a steal but I need it sold before I leave town Friday.  I am thinking of taking the best offer over $2500.  Is there any price you would buy it at?  Thanks,Dbag

I know that for $2500, I can resell it for $3000, so I reply that I will swing by with $2500 cash that night and pick it up.  He replies telling me that he wants to wait until saturday to see if he gets any other offers, then reposts it on CL with a price of $2500.  My brother calls him and the guy says he already has an offer for that (me) and tries to start a bidding war!  My brother offers $26 cash right then, but the guy says wait until saturday.  Now he has it posted for $2950 firm.  Hahah, I hope this guy never sells the bike…thats what you get for screwing with people!

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