Summer kicks off in Laconia with at 91st annual bike week
Laconia Bike Week is the oldest motorcycle rally in the USA, whose roots date back to 1916, but became official in 1923 as part of the Loudon Classic motorcycle races. The event is held in June each year and is still called by some of the old timers as the Gypsy Tour. An explanation of the name was given to an attentive crowd by the lead singer of one of the Rock Bands that played in one of the beer tents. Today motorcycle enthusiasts call these gatherings “runs or rallies”, but Gypsy Tour is truly an American term that described riders from all parts of America that would meet at favorite destination. Laconia in New Hampshire, Sturgis in South Dakota and Daytona Beach in Florida are a few of the more popular locations. Bike riders would travel long distances, with the bikes loaded up with camping gear, sleeping along the roads, sitting around campfires, thus they were called gypsies.
While there are many makes and models of motorcycles at the Laconia event, the predominant bike is the Harley Davidson and it is really exciting to see the antique models with nicknames like Panhead, Knucklehead and Shovelhead. They were given these names because of the distinct shape of their rocker covers. In the more recent years some claim that Harley Davidson has paid less attention to “style and quality”, and more on being a marketing machine. While the brute marketing approach is true, there is still something about the sound of the pipes and the thrill of riding an American Classic. Some of the new 2014 bikes are absolute eye candy. If you enjoy Motorcycles, there are thousands of them to see during the week and most proudly show them off in various ways.
Making the bling look good
A number of years ago, our company, Static Clean had the fortune to work on Harley Davidson parts with one of their outsourced manufacturing partners. Besides the Harley sound, the most attractive thing about a Harley is the chrome or bling as it is called today. The speedometer and tachometer instrument gauges were being manufactured in Connecticut and secondary processing such as decorating or chrome plating were required. Any debris or particles on the parts would show up in the finished product. Our ionizing air nozzles were implemented and the reject rates were vastly reduced. Static Clean helps hundreds of companies towards yield improvements by controlling the particle attraction of static electricity. The automotive industry in general considers static to be a major problem that needs to be addressed. It is exciting working on “cool things”.
As a frequent travel I sometimes wonder: Who writes the rules? I’m not just talking about the rules of the road, but the protocol that the service industry follows when a salesperson hits the road for overnight trips. As a salesperson for Static Clean International, if my travel schedule is within 350 miles in any direction from home, I typically drive. The hassle of the airport makes driving more practical and, frankly, more enjoyable. The big tossup is whether to take a car to New York City or take the train. The train seems to be winning the NYC battle, but elsewhere, it is the car.
Rules of the Road
It was interesting to learn that while the Romans had to deal with problems related to horse–drawn chariots, the “rules of the road” didn’t really start until the motoring age. The history of these rules is steeped in British law that dates back to the Highway Act of 1835.
It’s also interesting to note is the “rules of the road” spilled over into the “rules of the sea” for ships to follow when navigating the oceans of the world. Especially alarming is that no one vessel has absolute right of way over another vessel. There can be a “give way” and a “stand on” situation, where the “give way” vessel is burdened and a “stand on” vessel is one with privilege. However, the “stand on” vessel does not have absolute right of way over the “give way.” If a dispute that ends in a collision happens, you have to take it up with the Admiralty. Who’s up for a cruise?
Try driving your automobile on the roads of America using the rules of the sea. I’ve driven in Italy, and the rules of the sea seem fitting when trying to get from the outskirts of Rome to St. Peter’s Square. Nobody has the right of way, so everybody goes, and it resulted in a costly fine that took a year to settle with the Polizia.
The Importance of Eye Contact
Let’s assume that you made it safely to your hotel. After check in, you decide to eat at the hotel or go to a local restaurant. As you look around, you notice other people sitting by themselves, but they are seated so they are not face to face with each other. Instead they are dispersed throughout the eatery in a way that reduces eye contact. Doesn’t that seem silly? Many of the eating establishments of Europe place you shoulder to shoulder with complete strangers, which results in some great conversations.
Feeling Lucky is Relative
These same things happened in 1989 while visiting Yugoslavia, a country that no longer exists and is now divided into Bosnia-Herzegovina and Croatia. We found ourselves in the mountains just below Sarajevo without a hotel, so we decided to grab a bite at a local watering hole. The waitress sat us at a long table with complete strangers, so we struck up a conversation with a couple of gentlemen seated next to us. One man was a pilot for Yugoslavia’s national airline. He went on to tell us how lucky he was in life. He said, “You don’t understand — I have 12 hectares of land and a cow. I get fresh milk every day.” With help from our new friends, we ended up finding a clean hotel, and the next morning, as we jumped into our Yugo automobile, we came to realize how lucky we are to live in America, but that it is okay to bend the rules and make eye contact once in awhile.
It’s that personal connection with clients that we believe separates Static Clean from our competitors. Discover more about what we offer by contacting us.