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Bikes / Aviation / Life As It Happens

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Tectonic Shifting

Tectonic Shifting

So….could this be the big one? For the last 4 years I have been attempting to narrow down my list of choices for a bike upgrade. My first (and still currently only) bike was purchased new 9 years ago, and now has 45000km on the odometer. I have always maintained it was a good thing my first bike was acquired in my forties…ample time to ensure my system was flushed of unused (or overused) testosterone. At the time of that purchase, I had the mindset of a 25 year old (more to do wit

Stafford

Stafford

Age Spots vs Sweet Spots

Age Spots vs Sweet Spots

In a few days, according to the societal predisposition of my awesome country Canada, I will be classified as a Senior. Now, there are variations on a theme as it pertains to what qualifies someone to enter this auspicious stage of life. Some Federal, Provincial and private entities bestow the title on those who have attained the silver-lined age of 55. (That would be me by the way). Others require an individual to be 60 or 65 years old. That then affords me a minimum of 5 to 10 years to po

Stafford

Stafford

Balance: Beyond Two Wheels

Balance: Beyond Two Wheels

How it all began... Circa A.D. 1979 / Canadian Olympic Track & Field Trials Winnipeg Manitoba 10.15 seconds. Personal Best Time - 100m sprint 20.9 seconds. Personal Best Time - 200m sprint 48 seconds. Personal Best Time - 400m sprint 63 seconds. Time taken to get back to a resting heart rate after running 3.5 km Circa A.D. 2008 - Canadian National Shito Ryu Itosi Kai (Japanese) Karate Championships - 2nd Place Back in the Post Ice Age era of 1979, I was 17 years old. Bols

Stafford

Stafford

OK...My Bucket List Just Expanded...Again!!

OK...My Bucket List Just Expanded...Again!!

I am not usually classified as a jealous man. Well...if truth be told, I am slightly envious of the West Coast BC chapters with their unquestionably scenic mountains. Having once resided there in a time when testosterone was both legal, and NOT politically incorrect, I know of which I speak. There is now another contender for my  2-wheeled yearning: Europe. I have visited different parts of Europe in years past, but have never had the opportunity to actually ride motorcycles during my visit

Stafford

Stafford

 

Blasting The Winter Blahs

So, the seasonal cold weather threatens to hang around longer than your body's core temperature would like. Depending on where you reside in Canada, the evil Ninja twins, Win & Min (Winter and Motorcycle Insurance) conspire to settle in for their usual six-month, in-your-face mockery of all that is decent and warm. Well, if I cannot ride my bike due to my seasonally challenged, geographic location north of the 49th parallel, then maybe I can offset some of the sub-zero doldrums by pra

Stafford

Stafford

Confusing (Non-Existent) Logic

Confusing (Non-Existent) Logic

Leather. Gasoline. Oil. Grease. Rubber. Asphalt. Two Wheels. Essential Ingredients necessary to separate oneself from the mundane. Elements that allow for a unique sensory experience that most mortals will never become familiar with. Hmm...too grandiose or poetic? Or not descriptive enough? After only seven seasons in the saddle as a motorcyclist, it is safe to say that I have only begun to scratch the surface of appreciating the full essence of this two-wheeled genre. There are those

Stafford

Stafford

Conversations With Eve: The Biker

Conversations With Eve: The Biker

East coast girls are stylishly hip. Southern girls apparently have weaponized bootys. Mid-Western girls seem to have an inherent valium-induced calming effect, while northern girls seem to be very effective at warming their male companions with nothing but their lips. It goes without saying that American Pop Culture of the early to mid-sixties infused (some would say irrevocably established), the sexually charged, female-objectification that flourishes to this day. The seemingly unpretentiou

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Stafford

 

The Crucible of Change in The Toronto Police

Earlier this month, national and international journalists weighed in with their impressions on the appointment of Mark Saunders, Toronto’s new Jamaican-Canadian Chief of Police. Given the multi-layered complexity and scope of responsibility of such an important and far reaching senior public-facing position for Canada’s most diverse and populous city, it goes without saying that the principals, Toronto’s Mayor and the Toronto Police Services Board, responsible for reaching the final decision fo

Stafford

Stafford

 

Fear In Disguise

Ever since that Tower of Babel inci­dent way back in his­tory, we of the human race have been engaged in diverse forms of racial, religious and socio-economic one-upmanship. Some sub­tle, some overt. The peren­nial ques­tion: why is race is such a light­n­ing rod? In the USA, it has been debated ad-infinitum and unfor­tu­nately may not be answered for yet another gen­er­a­tion. One would expect more mature, rea­soned think­ing and accep­tance of this unavoid­able and patently obvi­ous fact;

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Stafford

Bikers: Busting Myths

Bikers: Busting Myths

A few days ago, I was listening to a CBC television newscast showcasing a young Quebec filmmaker by the name of Xavier Dolan. This admittedly young, brash, yet gifted filmmaker, has been dubbed The Québécois L'Enfant Terrible. After all, where does a fresh-faced 25-year-old, get off winning the prestigious Jury Prize at the Cannes Film Festival for his just released film Mommy? Decades-old, entrenched filmmakers of his genre, have continually looked down their noses at such young up and co

Stafford

Stafford

Catnip For Bikers

Catnip For Bikers

Choices. In the words of Captain Jack Sparrow...I am havin' a thought. The thought being I have a hankerin' to upgrade my ride. I know the process involved will take some time and extended research, so I figured I would start with the keepers of intimate knowledge on the subject - The CMC Family! While I am still quite open to other choices, I have narrowed it down to 3. All look different. All ride differently. Certainly all are built differently; and most assuredly all come with

Stafford

Stafford

 

Maintaining A Tan When Things Get Cold

Nervously, I watched him stride with grim intent towards me; a huge holstered firearm fastened to his right hip and a look of pure disgust and indignation written on his face. As he came up to me, any preconceived notions of me owning personal space was totally obliterated! 24 hours earlier…. Excitement started to build once I found out I would be introduced to cross-border flight procedures. My flight instructor at the university I attended at the time, was going to take a couple of h

Stafford

Stafford

The Joy & Shame of Living Vicariously

The Joy & Shame of Living Vicariously

So, here in Ontario, we are just 5 degrees away from breaching the 0C temperature threshold. It has been what, 4 to 5 weeks since we were above that level? While I will say most anything to massage my state of denial, it’s way past the time when a man’s (or woman’s) heart turns to that old standby…envisioning being on the open road on two wheels. There are only so many winter-encased bike shows (approximately 2 per year in Toronto & Ottawa) wherein you can fawn and drool over machines t

Stafford

Stafford

Old Blood

Old Blood

Grizzz brought up a very important topic in one of his recent Blog posts - New Blood - http://www.cmcnational.ca/index.php?/blog/10/entry-29-new-blood/ - pertaining to the issue of waning membership in the CMC. I would like to submit a few thoughts of my own on his insightful piece. I am sure it is the general perception (in and out of the CMC), that I ride a “Crotch Rocket”. Maybe I am just slightly oversensitive, as I tend to lean towards the politically correct left, by refuting the

Stafford

Stafford

 

Passionate Freedom

Those who know me well, are all too aware of the fact that I have a thing for all things aeronautical. In times past and in another era when I was flush with testosterone, and with little guidance as to what to do with such a virulent chemical coursing through my veins, I somehow convinced the Government of Canada to legally certify me to slip the surly bonds of earth and dance the skies on laughter-silvered wings. The fact that I was officially sanctioned to stra

Stafford

Stafford

 

Hang In There Folks...Summer's Comin'

As a warmup to the premier of the Why We Ride Film scheduled for Feb 8th in Uxbridge ON, here are a few clips to get your juices flowing and to shove you even further into a state of denial concerning our beautiful country's current frigid weather. They were not taken from the film, but they represent three widely recognized motorcycling styles - Cruiser - Sport - Adventure. They were selected for their professional quality and they showcase top tier motorcycles in their respective sub-gen

Stafford

Stafford

 

When Evil Looks Good

I am often amazed at the quality of rendered custom motorcycle artwork showcased by talented artists. I also find it equally intriguing that the majority of representative themes created, for the most part tend toward the dark or macabre. Dead Heads, skeletons, and copious amounts of unusual creatures from the underworld, all seem to have principal sway in their portfolios. Granted while these depictions are usually extremely detailed and in a lot of cases, quite lifelike, I have often wo

Stafford

Stafford

 

CMC Circa 2013 A.D.

December 31st - The last day of 2013, signalling the end of another year. Some of us have just had their electricity turned back on after almost a full week of weather related outages in the GTA and Southern Ontario region. It sucks being cold. I am not just saying this because I hail from a tropical island (ok, maybe a little), but having chosen to live in Canada, it is incumbent on me not to give into complaining. After all, Canada is a fantastic place to live and get connected on all sor

Stafford

Stafford

 

Bloodlines

Well I have somehow deluded myself into thinking that I can write a novel. Time will tell I guess. Below is an excerpt from a chapter in my manuscript (historical fiction no less - whatever was I thinking?) that I have been plodding along with for over a year. Have a read, but go easy on the newbie writer! He stood a short distance from the cross where a young man hung dying. He did not know his name, but knew that he had been found guilty of treason and therefore was summarily sen

Stafford

Stafford

 

Take A Risk On Remembrance Day

Consider this. What do we most lend our strength to? To what cause do we bear arms. Are we so bound by the current mores of a society that attempts to define us on terms we have not voluntarily acquiesced to? Some would say we have choice in all things; others would beg to differ. At what point does one decide to stand for or against something? Or someone? What standard of forbearance has to be breached, before we say enough! I protest! I have to do something about this; even if it mea

Stafford

Stafford

 

Looking Beyond Our 7th Anniversary

I do not think it is mere coincidence that we are embarking on a new venture with a new platform around the same time of our 7th Anniversary. We have grown not only in numbers, but in positive exposure and credibility. Our community-focused mandate is reflected in our continued involvement with many charitable organizations such as the Children's Wish Foundation. But beyond that, we have become nationally recognized as a group of individuals who exemplify compassion and a genuine willingnes

Stafford

Stafford

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