Sunday, November 13, 2005

Ode to the Old Dirty Biker

Whenever I'm at bike night I always catch myself watching the Old Dirty Bikers. Their worn look draws me in. I'm always wondering what their story is. What kinds of experiences they've had riding the highways on their bikes. Most of them don't ride the fancy, shiny Harley Davidson...most of their bikes have character, the bike is as worn as it's rider. I went to the National Motorcycle Museum in Anamosa, IA on Friday and there was the coolest looking worn out Harley there. I stood their for a long time looking at it, wondering what the rider must have looked like. How many miles this old biker and his bike must have ridden. There was even a Christmas ornament on it. At the museum there was also the Hall of Fame room. There was a Hall of Famer who has since passed on to the other side whose story drew me in. His name was Allen Calvin La Fortune. A Harley was the only form of transportation that Allen ever owned. He used his bike to haul his boat, a camper, and a trailer. He had rode a million miles by 1998. Allen's last ride was 6 days before his death in August 2002. Allen was a true 1%er. Some people just don't get motorcycles and what it is like to ride but I know the Old Dirty Bikers do. If you are a true 1%er and you read my blog, leave me a story. I'd love to hear about your adventures on the open road.

Here is a poem that I found written by an Old Dirty Biker, I really liked it and hopefully you will too:

As the southern sun makes its fall, the darkness of night starts to call.
Sweat beads thick around his head, a mind full of heartache, a heart full of dread needing something to unscramble lifes tangled web.
Out in the darkness a steel horse sits, poised and ready to calm lifes fits.
A touch of a button, a twist of a grip
breaking the silence 88 inches rip, slicing the night with one eye lit.
As cold wind blows and the white lines roll from his head lifes troubles seem to flow and for a brief moment it's touched his soul.
As the western moon makes its fall the steel horse sits back in its stall.
Live to ride, ride to live as one may recall but for those who do
they know this is all.


Anonymous said...

I have to agree with you there. a bike matches the person. Its so common to see brand new credit card rider yuppies on soft-tails with their polo shirts at events. I'd rather ride something that I built with my own hands and stand on the outside of the crowd, knowing that I truely have something different that I can take and hold my own pride in.
Favorite adventures would have to be my weekly cafe racer rides with my buddy (headlight ED) at 1-2am on the twistest roads one could find around this area. Nothing like racing in the back roads with no one around on garage built cafe racers. I just remember sitting at a rail road crossing watching train car after train car roll past with tanks, trucks and equipment for the war in Iraq. just made me stop and think about how lucky we are to be free.

Unknown said...

hey harley girl. this is Joe LaFortune, Allen LaFortune was my uncle (uncle Al). He definately was the epitame of a biker. we (our entire family) are all bikers and motorcycle lovers as well. it is unfortunate that it wasnt until Al passed that some of us got into the motorcycle tradition and riding. I would love to hear more from you. i sent you an e-mail. if u could get back to me i would apppreciate it.

IHG said...

Hey Joe...I looked for your e-mail but didn't find it. Please contact me at I think it's so awesome that you found my post. Hope to hear from you!!