THE ONLY TICKET I ALMOST GOT
Originally posted by Buck Lovell on Sunday, 13 November 2011 in Buck Lovell’s – American Biker Blog
THE COP YELLED “PULL OVER” SO I DID!
This is for Heather Hartwigsen, one of the many gorgeous servers at the Bum Steer on 5th Street, the place for steaks Steakhouse in Spearfish, South Dakota. There is an especially beautiful bartender at the Bum Steer name Traci, but she’s my wife so I guess my opinion is a tad tainted. The Bum Steer also has good steaks, a killer salad bar, and other entrees! Some restaurants have servers that are so ugly they can ruin one’s appetite. You know the ones I’m referring to, they have moustaches. Go to the Bum Steer for a great meal, don’t just go there to stare at the wildlife! The giant bull named “Cupcake” that resides in the window isn’t real, it’s plastic, so don’t let that stop you from going in the front door.
Now to the crux of the biscuit.
In the San Francisco Bay area, there are many bridges that cross the bay, and the rivers that feed the bay. There are also many multiple lane freeways that circle the large body of water known as San Francisco Bay. During the hot summer months one can ride a motorcycle all the way around the bay, and across the bay at various points, and have a cooler ride than the folks that live farther inland. Just to name a few of the bridges; the Oakland-San Francisco Bay Bridge, The Golden Gate Bridge, The Dumbarton Bridge, the Carquinez Bridge etc. The Carquinez has an expanded metal section that allows you to look down 150 feet through the bridge road surface. Its scary as hell!
There are seven bridges managed by the Bay Area Toll Authority, and these bridges have a toll depending upon which direction you travel on the bridge. But you get the drift. A motorcycle rider can stay near the water and ride cool, even in the sometimes very hot summer weather of the Bay Area. Ask Arlen Ness, he rides the bridges all the time.
A riding buddy of mine and myself were rocketing at 90 MPH back towards San Jose on our bikes, neither of which had a front brake, but that’s the way it was back then about 1973. No front brake, with extended forks was the style. I was riding my 1949 Harley-Davidson EL, with FL top-end (outside oiler 1963 cylinder heads 74 cubes). Six bend pullback handlebars allowed me to lean back and look real cool while traveling at a very unsafe speed, especially considering the traffic density. I can’t remember exactly what my friend was riding, but he had pulled ahead of me by about 10-11 car lengths. We were racing if you must know. He must have been riding a Shovelhead powered machine. At any rate, without any warning whatsoever there was a freakin motorcycle cop on a KZ-1000 coming up on my left rear quarter at about 110 MPH, and he hit his lights and siren just as we crossed Highway 17 on Southbound 280. I think Highway 17 is named something else these days. Highway 680 or something. He yelled at me to pull over, and then he accelerated to catch the other rider. As I started to pull to the right as instructed, the off ramp to Southbound Bascom Avenue appeared as if by magic. Pulling over as instructed, I went right up the off ramp and proceeded South on Bascom Avenue, at the legal speed limit, of course, and went home. I was laughing all the way to my apartment in Campbell, California. Of course the very angry motorcycle cop and my Chopper riding friend weren’t laughing, or maybe the cop was inside, because he caught one of us. I was told by my friend who will remain nameless (I forgot his name, too much smoke that day) that the cop was so pissed off he was spitting when he talked, or rather yelled, and the blood vessels in his head were throbbing. I wonder if he had a headache? He wrote my friend one speeding citation for him, a second BS reckless driving citation because I didn’t stop to get mine, and wrote him up for all his equipment violations, which were numerous. No turn signals, bald tires, etc. Who could afford safe tires, we spent the money on beer! Bald tires are easier to do burnouts with, anybody knows that. How do you think they got bald anyway? All this was going on as I sat at home sipping a cold one. The moral of the story is (if you’re a motorcycle traffic cop) don’t try to catch two birds with one stone. Something to that effect. That’s the only time I’ve ever managed to not get a traffic citation when I truly deserved one. The luck of the draw.
In Placentia California, I tried to out run a motorcycle cop once. I had just installed Rivera Engineering’s dual Mikuni carb setup on my 92 Dyna Glide and was going through the gears, when a cop ran out of the bushes on a blind corner and tried to flag me down. But that’s another story for another time. I hate helicopters, and hate having guns pointed at me, especially when the gun holder’s hands are shaking. So here is my advice to you; always pull over when you’re told to do so by law enforcement, and take the off ramp if you can. It might be cheaper, then again you might go to jail, but that’s a choice you’ll make when the time comes. I took the ramp, and it got away with it. These days you won’t, I can almost promise you that. Just pull over and take your medicine…..it will definitely be cheaper in the long run. And try not to laugh when the cop starts yelling at you like your dad did when he caught stealing his whiskey, it will only piss him off further.