Archive | December, 2012

This Other Road

31 Dec

My license to practice shorthand in Texas courts expires tonight at midnight.  I gotta tell you, it seems strange.

Actually, my career ended a few years ago because of arthritis in my left hand.  I’m used to it now, so that’s not what feels strange.  Admitting I’m “old” enough to have arthritis and, therefore, letting my license expire is what feels strange.  How and when did that happen?

I was among the first group of reporters to be tested and certified (not grandfathered) back in ’78 — when you could still find plenty of old-school judges and lawyers around the courthouse.  The profession treated me well for 31 years, and I’ll bet you can’t find one other reporter in Texas who can make the claim of being assigned to three nice and slow-talking judges!  

Here is my only on-the-job “action” shot.

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What does this have to do with riding a motorcycle?  Not a thing, yet everything.  When all is said and done, it’s merely one part of the journey to reach my destination, isn’t it?  Yes, for me it’s always about the journey.

So I wonder where this other road goes. . . .

Peace on the road!
BT
CSR No. 364 (Exp. 12-31-12)

Scooter Grand Prizza

8 Dec

Last month Austin, Texas, had the honor of being the host city for the Formula 1 United States Grand Prix.  News media and fans from all over the world poured into Austin and headed over to the new Circuit of the Americas state-of-the-art race track.  Most of the Downtown Warehouse District was blocked off for three days.  It’s been five years since an F1 race has been held in the USA, creating an especially exciting atmosphere.  We’re told half a billion people watched the the race.  It was a really big deal!

In honor of this major event, the The Pizza Bistro hosted its own Scooter Grand Prizza — free pizza and reserved parking for anyone showing up on a scooter.

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John Kinnaird, owner of The Pizza Bistro, and his staff greeted us at the door.  With Vespas lined up for outdoor seating, their enthusiasm for scooters was immediately apparent.  When asked about that, he said,

I’m sure you know that scooters are the preferred method of transportation all over Italy.  There were thousands and thousands!  They were wonderful:  functional, colorful, beautiful!  As we were working on design ideas about how to ‘fuse’ Austin and Italy together, we decided that one great way to do so would be to include scooters in our restaurant floorplans.  We think that they add spirit, a dash of fun and help connect us to Italy.

As for the pizza?  Bravo!  You get to choose style, size, sauce, and toppings.   I ordered thin crust with perfectly seasoned Marinara sauce.  John said they import many of their ingredients from Italy, and it shows. Of course, there are many other items on the menu.   Great service.  I’ll be back!

I wasn’t about to let this event go by without an Austin Scooter Club ride, so I linked up some of our best hilly, curvy roads for a fast 42-mile ride through West Austin.  At least in my mind, the Grand Prizza lived up to its name!  The video speaks for itself.

GoPro fans, I used my new Hero 2 for most of the ride footage.  Right now you can pick up a Hero 2 for a good price.  With the latest firmware download, it’s an economical upgrade from the Hero.  While I haven’t made a side-by-side comparison, it does a noticeably better job of handling motion and low light.  I see a Hero 3 Black in my future. . . .

Peace on the Road!
BT

P.S.  Joy is everywhere, Funiculi, Funicula!

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