Chapter 4 - Motorcycles
I did notice that Priss' motorcycle was the latest Genom superbike models and that particular one is sitting comfortably in my NYC home. I'm still smarting that my Cleveland Pursuit Supercharger Ex-Custom is down for parts replacements and I didn't have any my backup motorcycles and scooters here in Tokyo. I do have a 6X6 armoured vehicle in guise of a civilian SUV but that's for the winter weather and to carry my Knight Saber equipment. I don't usually drive with it in the daytime traffic. I'm not going spend extra yens for another cycle and not that I are not without any monetary means but no cycle that I can't use for long time driving or collecting. That will mean I'm going get the company to get my Emblem Turbo Special from my Vancouver vacation inventory and my Heinkel Special Urban Racer from my Seattle vacation inventory. That will take days for delivery if it's not top priority for me. Sorcha or Scorch to her friends will make sure those deliveries will be on time or heads will feel her non-spiked hard rubber mace and not the spray type. So the meantime, I only can look with envy at Priss' bike. Priss noticing me glancing at her bike and here's how our second part of our conversation started.
Priss – Like my bike, there?
The General – Yeah, from what I can tell it's a Genom KW-123 Special from last year and lipstick red color, too. It must cost you a lot.
Priss - I had good discount from a good friend from my biker gang days who owns motorcycle dealership. I finished the last payment for it. You like motorbikes, huh?
The General – I do like them. As for that particular Genom model, I have bought that one model in January of last year in the stainless silver color in Toronto and had it delivered to my apartment home in New York.
Priss - Are you a serious motorcycle enthusiast or just a casual fan?
The General – A serious enthusiast but I not one for sport racing. I don't always watch motorbike racing on TV but I do have a lot of console video super bike racing games. My interest in motorbikes came about when I was still in the military and in my Calgary SAIT years. I want to buy a motor vehicle to transport me around the city and on the highways. A car was not in the cards because I didn't have a need to lug around at lot of stuff from one place to another on a daily basis and cars are at that time where considered the big villains of air pollution and poor gas economy per daily driving. Cars were only good for me as a harsh cold weather vehicle. A motorcycle was best option for me because scooters and mopeds weren't made for freeway driving without being shoved aside by the usual motor vehicles and I want to leave the city for road trips. What made me more a serious enthusiast was the quest for finding higher motorcycle performance that you find in those straight road racing bikes. I have an unofficial sideline occupation that required speed and mechanical endurance.
Priss – So what's your first motorcycle that you bought?
The General – A 1988 olive drab Harley-Davidson XLH1200 with a belt drive was my first purchase. Yeah, I love that 1200cc engine.
Priss – 1988!? Aren't you supposed to be a little too young for having possession of an American vintage model motorbike from the previous century?
The General – Yeah, but I was born in 1965. I just don't have the grey hairs, wrinkles, and I'm still walking without a cane to aid me. I still do physical activities that senior citizens aren't allowed to do because ongoing physical muscles and bone structures deterioration prevents proper speedy healing needed for that type constant activity.
Priss – Huh?! I don't believe it.
The General – Well, believe it and don't call me an old man. I don't act like one and don't intend live my whole life in senior care housing complex. I'm well off in a financial sense and I'm not on a pension, yet. No, I don't have a fountain of youth serum but I do know some scientists who are doing that type of bioresearch. I just have the will to refuse to believe in old age until I'm pretty well finishing my long life goals.
Priss – Oh well, I just have to take your word for it. But let's back on topic, who taught you how to ride a motorcycle? For me, it was my boyfriend who was in a biker gang.
The General – Harley Davidson Company had a motorcycle training center in my old hometown.
Priss – I guess you had some real profession trainers. Did you sell that bike?
The General – I still have it and in excellent condition. But that's only normal street sportster bike purchase I made. After that, I bought only super bikes and in two types which are street legal and semi-street models.
Priss – Boy, look's like I'm not only lawbreaker here. So you have real racing models.
The General – Yep, I just have those bikes fitted the usual urban street equipment that doesn't compromise the racing performance figures. I haven't been caught on any traffic violations with those bikes and anything close to legal troubles were just police chases by crooked cops who able convince their peers that this is a legitimate pursuit and not trying to off a potential legal witness against them. Being in jail for those situations was not good option at the time.
Priss – I got find out what you really do for a living on the side.
The General – Well, if you have decided later on a little proposition from my companion to find the answer but for two things I can tell you that I was a library technician working for the UN Library in New York and now in Tokyo, I'm an owner of a video game entertainment center located in the newest and largest anime/manga otaku shopping mall complex in the world.
Priss – Now you're getting me interested.
The General – No way, I'm not let you interrupt my friend's efforts to save you.
(I swing my view to Sylia's way and she still getting cops to see her way.)
The General – Besides buying super bikes wasn't the only thing I did. Creating them was also one of other thing to do for the quest of greater horsepower on a motorbike.
Priss – Where did you get the idea of making your own motorcycle?
The General – From 1960s Mechanix Illustrated magazine article of making a motorcycle with a V8 car engine with a modified motorcycle frame. In my case, I decided to start out with a Chrysler Slant-6 car engine used for a 1976 Plymouth Duster and this engine block can straight from the factory and was never installed in any Chrysler vehicle when I brought the engine. I have some help in getting motorcycle's manual transmission to work with the car engine. After the Slant-6 project was done, I started with Chrysler V8 Hemi car engine block used for a 1973 R/T Valiant Charger. Later motorcycle projects used a flat 12 and flat 16 car engines. The bikes were designed as urban super bikes with chain drives and then replaced with belt drives. Their final automotive configurations were turbo-supercharged, electronic fuel-injected, and shaft driven. After that, I stopped using normal car engines and started making actual motorcycle versions of the 6 to 16 cylinder types and then experimented with Wankel Rotary and jet turbine engines. Those car engined motorcycles are still with me and use them periodically.
Priss – (whistling) You must have a good time doing them.
The General – Yeah, I found myself cackling like a madman ever time during the designing and building stages.
Priss – Hey, do you still have a motorcycle here in Tokyo?
The General – Yeah, but my Cleveland Pursuit Supercharger Ex-Custom had broke down and one of its specialty parts had to be replaced and my friend, Nigel didn't have that particular part on him and he inquired all over Japan to see if that part was available for pickup at any motorcycle parts depot store. No luck for that part and I'm stuck with a non-functional motorcycle. I called a close colleague of mine to bring two different motorcycles of mine to Tokyo.
Priss – A Cleveland Pursuit Supercharger Ex-Custom!? That motorcycle model rivals my Genom KW-123 Special in terms of price, additional options features, and performance. At least, there's someone challenging Genom's supremacy for the international motorcycle market. So you know Nigel.
The General – You mean Nigel Kirkland?
Priss – Yeah, that Nigel who happens to do my bike repairs and he lives near the earthquake zone.
The General – Yes, he lives there. I knew him much earlier when I started to plan to build my new residence in Tokyo. We both met when I was meeting another expatriate American who was doing a certain interesting project. Quite the silent type most of the time.
Priss – (Her face turned into thoughtful frame of mind) That's Nigel for you and always short on words.
The General – I sense you have some affection for him.
Priss – He's kind of a cute guy for his age.
The General – That he is but he can be focus on his work to notice the people who taking quite a fancy to him.
Priss – (sighing) But he's easy on the eyes, at least.
The General – Well, he's abit clueless about someone's affections for him.
Priss – I suspect you're not going to tell me who is the other woman, huh.
The General – Well, not right now, but in the future, we will see.
Priss – Hmm, I just have to get more curious.
End of second part of our conversation