Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving! You Can Get Anything You Want at Alice's Restaurant...

I am a father now, so I am trying to carry on some fun family traditions. One of those is playing Alice's Restaurant every year at Thanksgiving. It was one of Grandpa John's favorite things to do (he loves Arlo Guthrie).

I know it doesn't make sense, Grandpa John hates hippies and everything they stand for. If he was in the crowd at Woodstock he would have been shouting for more Sha Na Na, but he always played this for us as kids every Thanksgiving.

It will be playing in the Grand Am as we head to Aunt Mindy's tomorrow. Hopefully one day Wesley and Audrey will also play for their children.

Of course after dinner we will be shooting our AK-47 and making fun of hippies. After all we are Povenmires!

Friday, November 18, 2011

D&S Parts Shed - Northeast Kansas City

Going through some old files I ran across another favorite story from Wide Open. This was about the bike shop owned by Jerry "Dresser" Fletcher and John "Shifty" Sheaffer.

Dresser and Shifty were real old-time motorcycle enthusiasts. Their bike shop was not for the faint of heart. I enjoyed the time I spent there and still have my t-shirt. They have both passed away.

More colorful characters from the Kansas City motorcycle community.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Abby Povenmire - Ladies that Ride

Back years ago I was editor of Wide Open Magazine. It was a fun time for both me and Abby. We got to travel around a lot and meet some interesting people.

Each month there was a section on Ladies Who Ride. For October of 2003, the lady featured was Abby. I forgot how good she looked in those pictures. Actually 8 years and two kids later she still looks great!

This article reinforces Grandpa John's famous words, "There are two kinds of people who ride motorcycles. People who have fallen over and people who are going to fall over." Luckily Abby got back up and kept on going.

Friday, November 4, 2011

Cowboys, The American Royal Rodeo and Sonny Barger

I have been working for the American Royal Association for about 9 months now. It has been an interesting experience to say the least. One of the more colorful parts of my job was the Rodeo we had at Sprint Center. I was all over the place for sponsorship signage and fulfillment.

One of the places I was intrigued with most was behind the chutes interacting with the cowboys. These were not just guys with boots and hats that you see running around town. These were guys with black eyes, broken bones, taped up wounds and missing teeth. They were thrown every which way but loose (right turn Clyde) from various bucking broncs and nasty bulls. While standing behind the chutes with the Channel 41 News Crew, it reminded me of the part of Sonny Barger's book "Hell's Angel" where he talked about Bakersfield cowboys and Hells Angels in the old days.

"In the Bakersfield bars there was usually trouble between Hell's Angels and the Okies. Cowboys and bike riders have always clashed. Put them both in the room and there's always a fight. A lot of the cowboy types worked as oil riggers or ranchers, and a lot of them came out of the Oklahoma Dust Bowl thirties. Man, they liked to fight, and they were tough as hell too. In many ways, we were all the same animal, except the Bakersfield Okies drove trucks and rode horses. We Angels rode motorcycles."

I don't know how many Okies there were in the bunch, but there were some tough guys riding in the Rodeo.

"Like the Hell's Angels, Okies didn't call the cops when things got rough," Sonny says in the next paragraph.

I don't think any of the rodeo cowboys have 911 programmed in their cell phones...