This morning I met a group of bay area bikers at Buck’s restaurant in Woodside, CA and after breakfast, headed down to San Jose for the International Motorcycle Show. I still don’t have a regular ride here in the bay area so I drove down. It was raining, lightly (on and off) so I almost didn’t mind that I was driving.
I’ve attended these shows over the years, but never before in California. I’ve always attended the show at the Javits Center in NY or the convention center in Minneapolis. This was a very different crowd. People seemed more knowledgeable about the bikes, but they also lacked some of the excitement of the Mpls and NY crowds. My theory is that the folks here can ride all year round. This show comes to NY and MN in January and February when bikers are just craving the chance to ride — and the motorcycle show is sort of a substitute. No?
The highlight of the show for me was running into Clement Salvadori. He is one of the best loved and most read motorcycle writers in the world. He writes a regular column in RIDER magazine that I read religiously. I’ve been a fan of his writing for years and I had to work not to gush. Anyway, he flattered me by commenting on one of my RIDER articles, as he’d just traversed the same road, and remembered my story. My second scrape with fame at the show was meeting Tim from Pashnit, the definitive site for California motorcycle riding. Tim’s been working on the site for six years and it is a true jewel.
Perhaps the most fun was hanging around the Motorcycle Consumer News booth. More than half the people that come up to the booth are current readers/subscribers. They are so passionate about the magazine and as subscribers, feel like they’re in some sort of secret club. They’re also very smart. Anne ran out of the October issue. I told her it was because that was the issue with my picture on the cover. She told me no, it was because she only had a few of that issue left from the last show.