Wednesday, November 30, 2016

8 Tips to Consider Prior To Buying A New Motorcycle

You have decided you want to buy a motorcycle. You have done all the research that Google could possibly house. You have received your permit or license. Maybe you even did a Motorcycle Safety Foundation (MSF) class or two. Perhaps you even did a few demo rides at some of the dealerships or local motorcycle rallies. You have narrowed down the bikes to just one. You go to the dealership and you realize you did the wrong type of research. You are shocked by the financial aspect and perhaps slapped with pre-paid maintenance intervals, extended warranty and perhaps even GAP insurance. You are side struck by the thought that you will soon have the motorcycle of your dreams. You did not think about the loan process, or about adding parts, accessories or gear to that amount. You walk out, ride into the sunset, wake up the next day saying the word Fuck a million times.

Maybe that has happened to you? Maybe it has not happened to you yet. Nonetheless, let's talk about this stuff, because no one else does!

1. What the hell is GAP insurance or protection?
  • Per Nationwide Insurance: Gap insurance is an optional insurance coverage for newer cars (in this case motorcycles) that can be added to your collision insurance policy. It may pay the difference between the balance of a lease or loan due on a vehicle and what your insurance company pays if the car (in this case motorcycle) is considered a covered total loss. 
  • Meaning your negative equity is covered and that is actually what GAP insurance is. 
2. Do you need GAP insurance?
  • If you plan on keeping your motorcycle until the end of eternity and driving like a made man, "maybe". 
  • If you are buying a bike that will probably depreciate pretty fast, like a one off design that might cease to exist. 
  • If it makes you sleep better at night. 
3. Do you need to pre-pay for future service maintenance intervals?
  • If you do not have a clue how to even change a light bulb, let alone your oil, then yes! 
  • You will save money paying upfront for the services. 
  • However, if you do know how to work on your own bike, or have some basic knowledge and commonsense, then save your money. 
4. Should you buy an extended warranty?
  • Honestly, with the way manufactures are mass producing bikes and cars these days, it might not be a bad investment. Especially if you have no idea how fix or replace bad parts. 
  • Again, if you have basic knowledge on how to fix or repair things, you might be able to save some money here. 
5. If the salesman/woman asks you if you would like to upgrade your Wheels or       rims to spokes, say NO. Why? Well I'll tell you why....
  • First off, they suck to clean. It is a nightmare to keep spokes clean. Unless you never ride your bike, or sit there meticulously wiping it off every single time you use it, then don't even think about them.
  • Second, you will have to buy tubes for the rest of your life! In addition to tubes, you have to buy special balancing weights for spokes. The standard box type just won't work on most spoke rims because they will have a curvature to them. If your spoke rim actually has a flat outer rim then you are one lucky bastard. The special balancing weights for spoke rims cost more money. Tubes can run you all sorts of different prices depending on the brand. 
  • Third, they are an expensive upgrade long term, seriously consider a standard rim. If the bike you are buying come with spoke rims as an original equipment feature, consider upgrading to non-spoke. 
  • Forth, thank me later! 
6. Do you really need an exhaust upgrade or even a taller windscreen?
  • If you have never rode a motorcycle before, than you could probably save some upfront cash by skipping the exhaust and just getting a taller windscreen. You are more likely to take a trip on a highway for an hour or more than you are entering a Moto GP event where performance matters. 
  • If you don't think you will ever have money for an exhaust upgrade, then use this time to add it to your bike loan. 
  • If you are a Sunday rider and will never go on the highway and don't care about more rpms, than roll with stock and smile at your lower payments.
7. Do you really need to buy a helmet and motorcycle safety gear?
  • YES! Motorcycle gear is expensive. Even the cheapest stuff on the market will run you a few hundred bucks. There are helmets, pants, jackets and gloves you can choose from for under $100 bucks a piece. There are also helmets, pants, jackets and gloves you can choose from that can run you about $400 a piece or more. Do your research! RevZilla has a ton of educational YouTube videos on gear. Start there! 
  • If the dealership has a good selection of helmets, might as well roll that at least into your loan. Get a good helmet! If they have gear from at least First Gear or Joe Rocket, then invest. If they have stuff from Alpinestars or Rev'it, great! Do it! If the dealer just has Harley Davidson gear, or Yamaha branded gear, etc, the labels? What are you getting? Educate yourself before you buy!
8. Do you really need to buy a tire and wheel warranty?
  • First off, ask what this means? All dealerships create their own types of warranties, so ask questions, 
  • Ask, if it covers a nail, or dent in the rim due to a rock or curb. Ask as many questions as you can possibly can come up with.
  • I have heard of many dealerships trying to avoid warranty claims. You can read about it on a ton of different forums.  
  • At the end of the day, even tire manufactures do not give you coverage on a tire if you get a nail in it. 
  • This is one of those grey area warranties with very few success cases. So again, ask questions! Make a list of questions that you find online and ask them all! 
I hope these 8 tips help someone out. Looking back at my experience, these are things I wish I had known, or asked more questions about.

Thursday, November 17, 2016

Last Breath

Three years ago today I watched my aunt Sabah take her last breath in this world in her hospital bed. It is a moment in time that is so heavy of a burden to carry, that that day plays in my mind often. I could tell you each and every detail of that day, like it was today. It was the first time I watched someone fight death.

My aunt Sabah, my fathers sister.

Losing friends or family is a really hard thing. I lost my mother in a car accident 12 years ago. It was my dad, mom and I in a van traveling back home, when we were hit by a red light runner. The van was flipped, and my father and I survived the wreck. My mother was laying in the middle of the intersection barely alive. She died on the way to the hospital in the same ambulance I was riding in.

My parents and I.

Many of us don't talk about loss or deal with it well. I have lost so many people that I feel like I've become numb to it all sometimes. When you get a call this person past or that person past or this person is on their way to passing. Neither one of these experiences is easier than the other to deal with.

What I have learned over the years with loss, is that it is truly important to be the best that you can be as a mother, brother, sister, father, niece, nephew, uncle, aunt, grandpa, grandma, uncle aunt get the hint. Just be a good person. Do not judge, or disrespect. Do not hate or wish bad things on people. Do not push people away from you, just because you are having a bad a day.

Everyday on earth is a gift. You should treat it as it was intended to be treated as "the greatest gift on earth....LIFE"!


"It is not death that a man should fear, but he should fear never beginning to live." Marcus Aurelius

I took this photo in OBX, NC. It was a peaceful day.

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

My Life with Beer

I love craft beer. I enjoy the flavors the aromas and all the fancy glasses.  I even drink the cheap stuff, because sometimes, beer is just beer and better than no beer at all.

I decided to scroll through my photos saved in my Google Cloud and realized, I have a lot of beer photos! So you know what, why not share them all in one place.  I basically scrolled through about 3 years worth of photos and these were all of them. I deleted some, wish I hadn't but there are still many to see. Some I don't remember what they were. For the most part I love beers with a very hoppy flavor. However, anything with chocolate or coffee is a bonus!

Nonetheless, enjoy the photos and comment if you have tried any of them. Cheers!

Sierra Nevada IPA

Miller Lite chaser with a Bloody Mary. Only in Milwaukee

I can't remember what this was, but I was left to look after the keg. Bad Idea!

This was a Pils, I don't remember who made it. Miami, Fl though.

Probably an IPA or Double IPA

Most likely a summer seasonal.

Something with high alcohol content. I think this was Victory Brewing.

One of my favorite beers!

The night before I got married. Sly fox rt113 IPA. I will never forget that!

This was the end of a stout I had during a jazz fest in NY.

Flight of beers at the Yard's Brewery in Philly. 

Drinking a Guinness in a private jet! Now that's living! 

Bar in Philly covered in beer caps. I thought this was too cool to not share. 
Flight at Manayunk Brewing

Free IPA keg of some type at bike night in Fish Town, Philly.

Long Trail, such a good beer. 

I love this beer too. Allagash White!

While this was the best of the bunch. I honestly did not care too much for their beers. 


Free beer! Do it! 

MotoGP Indy and it's always Miller Time!

Harley Davidson 110th anniversary beers. MKE celebration.

This had some spice to it. Not bad.

No comment!

Beer always makes a public toilet look better. 

Mystery beer. 

This was delicious! 

Add caption


Miller Fortune. It actually wasn't bad at all. I really liked it. 

I found out I am not a fan of cider beers. 

Sierra Nevada 

Sierra Nevada IPA and Bon Jovi

This is unique to their brewery. Which is located in Pennsylvania.

Hands down the best brewery in the country!! New Glarus, located in Wisconsin.

PBR at the Pabst Brewery! 

Who knows, but we drank a lot that day!

Beer! Better with great friends!