Saturday, February 05, 2011

Riding with Murph so he could join the "dark side"

Murph, rider and author of the blog:, was staying at my home for the last couple of days as he resumes his riding about the USA.  He had a sojourn over the holidays in Florida and had left his 2004 R1150 GS Adventure Beemer cooling its heels in Steamboat Springs, CO.

Cooling its heels, by the way, is an understatement.  Murph returned from Florida at the end of last month to temperatures that plunged into the -40s.  Snow and the extreme cold forced his hiring a flatbed tow truck to take his GS over the several passes between Steamboat Springs and Denver but they made it down just fine, arriving at my place yesterday afternoon.

Murph is on a ride most of us motorcyclists dream about.  The plan is to ride the world, seeing what there is to see, at his own pace and on his own terms.  You must check out his postings in his blog, he's got a good eye for pictures.

Murph has also "seen the light" of the practicality of sidecar rigs and has plans in the long term to get himself one that will carry him and his gear across this planet of ours with minimal fuss.

Obviously, it won't be a Ural.  : )

Yesterday, the temperatures had soared into the high 30s and the main roads were clear but wet.  Murph's trusty old DELL laptop had recently had its screen malfunction and he had been searching for a replacement.

This is where his journey to the "dark side" begins.  By this I do not mean he went and got himself a K motorcycle, that is a different "dark side" within the Beemer Rider community.  No, it's far worse, he went Apple.

Murph had done his research and since it was so warm in my neighborhood today, we skipped the cage, and elected to ride to a nearby computer store.  We donned gear and rode our motorcycles out of my snow-packed neighborhood and onto the main roads which were clear but wet.  The way I figured it, if you're going to go to that particular "dark side", might as well do it in style right?

I led the way on Brigitta, my '87 R80 airhead, through wet streets and temperatures that ranged from 38-39°F degrees.  No issues with traction were encountered I am happy to report.  Murph just kept saying out loud at the traffic stops: "This is great riding weather!".  Mind you, at times it was lightly snowing on us but really, it was a pretty good Winter riding long as you don't fret much about wet roads and temperatures under 38°F.

Why 38°F you ask?  Because the time I had a lowside crash, it was due to ice which had formed with temperature readings at 37°F.  Of course, I was at higher elevations at the time, but it was June, not February!

We made it to the computer store, and Murph did his comparison shopping but ended up with a Macbook Pro with a 15" screen and some really nice technical specs.  I must admit the display on the thing was gorgeous.

We got out of the store, Murph with a lighter wallet, and packed up all the purchases onto his GS and my system case.  The ride home was wet but uneventful, had to keep opening up my visor to see sometimes but all in all, a fun ride.

Murph is now "enjoying" the transition from being a Windows user to being a Mac Zealot in training.  I believe I hear cursing coming from his room, I must go check.

Here's Murph going through the joys of transferring all his data to the new laptop

Today, Saturday, it was time for Murph to move on to his next destination, he's riding over to Boulder before the snow starts again in the afternoon to visit with another friend of his.  It was great meeting you Murph!  You're welcome (in spite of the fruity laptop) anytime at Casa Chang. 

Oh and before you go and write spiteful commentary re why Apple OS is better than Windows OS, blah blah blah, I already admitted Murph bought a really nice machine.


SonjaM said...

I have been following Murph for a while now, so I am not surprised to see him show up at your place. Two kindred spirits, that is except for the use of computer hardware.
I am also a lapsed PC user, living happily ever after with my MacBook.

RichardM said...

When I saw the title, I thought "Ural". I've been using OS X since it first came out. Far from perfect but generally trouble free. I'd say the same thing about Windows 7. Thanks for the link to another blog.


Mike said...

Nice post. I went to the dark side about 3 years ago with a MacBook Pro but also have a PC. It was nice of you to have Murph stay with you... he's a fellow airhead though!

Chris Luhman said...

LOL. When I saw the title, I thought sidecar. Don't care to get into the Apple/Win discussion. It's too pepsi/coke ford/chevy R/K for my tastes.

thanks for the link.

-Chris @ - year round riding in Minnesota

Charlie6 said...

SonjaM: Murph is definitely a kindred spirit, he's thinking of trying Wolf Creek Pass Winter!

RichardM: Now why is everyone thinking the dark side is going Ural?
: )

Mike: Yes, he wears the Airhead Logo patch proudly on his "weathered" riding jacket.

Chris: Even you, a fellow Uralista, thought going to the dark side was going Ural? C'mon now! As to the Apple/Windows thing, it's all in fun. Now, Airheads/KBikes...that's "serious" business. : )

Chris Luhman said...

Read my comment again, I said "sidecar" not Ural. :)

Murfs Spot said...

Dom,again many thanks for the friendship and hospitality,and holding my hand as I bought a "Fruity" laptop.Seems like i`m not alone though judging by the comments from the peanut gallery.
I may have to start a "Mac Appreciation Day" on my blog.................y`know,like share your nuggets of wisdom or some such nonsense.I`m sure you`d be more than welcome to join in,that is if it`s ok with the rest of "Us'...........

SonjaM,thanks for the continued support.Glad to have you as a regular.

And Mike is correct,i`m a card carrying member of the Oregon Airheads.......all thanks to my good friend Garry Newby,salt of the earth is that man.

Chris,Dom turned me onto,really enjoy it a lot.I`ll link it on the blog too.

bobskoot said...


what !! what about Nikon vs Canon debate ? All of my machines are PC based, but I must admit that Apple has a great screen

good luck to Murph and his travels

bobskoot: wet coast scootin

Charlie6 said...

Chris...I stand corrected.'re most welcome, anytime you're in the Denver area....ring me up.

RichardM, whoops, I clicked on the wrong fault. Please post again and I will publish your worthy comment.

Bobskoot, Murph is definitely a Nikon man...he's got a D300 and a D90 as "backup".

Jack Riepe said...

Dear Charlie6 (Dom):

I am typing this to you from a MacBook Pro 15" that is now 18 months old. It is the best computer I have ever owned with a display as bright and clear as a new soul.

There is a dark side to the computer world, but judging from my illuminated keys, it isn't here.

Now what is all this talk about the "K" bike representing the dark side of the BMW motorrad community? I'm sure you're heard the rumors that the venerable "R" machine is shortly to emerge from Bavaria with a watercooled jacket. It seems every machine in the BMW line-up will soon have a proper coolig system. Yet why is it some must have elephant-ear jugs on their machines to be happy? That is the trrue defining point of the dark side.

Fondest regards,
Jack • ®eep • Toad
Twisted Roads

Charlie6 said...

Jack Jack Jack Jack.....

I knew you'd pipe up with a strong and rousing defense of the Mac and its abilities.

As to the K Bikes being the dark side, surely you've heard the mutters from the airhead side of the MacPac of folks straying over to the dark side...just because they run smoother or are a bit newer technology and quieter...

In fact, as a proud member of the Airheads Motorcycle Club, it is from its monthly publication where I first saw the term "gone to the dark side" when referring to airhead riders also acquiring K Bikes...

As to forthcoming motorcycles which are oilheads coming out with water-cooled jackets....I say, eh! Just something else to break.

Yep, self flagellation, guilty as charged. Yep, mechanical challenges come my way on a more than regular basis; but they will be met and hopefully overcome each time.

And I love the way the jugs just stick out on my motorcycles! : )

Not as perky as on an old time Moto Guzzi but still, they're out there in the wind.

Jack Riepe said...

Dear Charlie6 (Dom):

It was at the Mac-Pac 1st of the Year Luncheon that I heard the stories about the liquid-cooled boxers. I cannot see BMW ever doing away with the horizontal jug design. They'd lose a gigantic percentage of their market. If you recall, the "K" bikes were intended to replace the "R" line back in the early 80's and it was like the bullshit with "new" Coke.

Yet Beemer has done the impossible several times. Namely they have kept the size of the jugs to 1200 cc's while upping the horsepower from 88 to 120. I believe that altering the cooling system has something to do with another jump in the horsepower.

I marvel at cruisers that are 1500 ccs or more, and still cannot break the 100 horsepower mark.

The Macintosh is what elevates man above the savages.

Fondest regards,
Jack • reep • Toad
Twisted Roads