October 24, 2008
So, we decided to go to the California Bike Week. It's an experiment really, we've all been to lots of these kind of events but never as a vendor. Since Biltwell's inception, we've been to Gypsy Runs, EDR's, Ground Zero's and a bunch of DicE parties–events we love. This was an attempt to step outside our circle of comfort and go to a mainstream "biker" event and see if we got laughed out of the place for not having enough tribal-doo rag flair, or see if people were ready to embrace our brand of flake helmets, chromoly bars and do-it-yourself pipe kits, etc. (What does a Dyna™ rider need with a weld-on seat bracket?) Well, so far we ran into a bunch of people we know and the vibe has been really good. Stacking things in our favor was going with friends Duane Ballard and family, and Kutty and the Hippy Killer crew. If it sucked, at least we'd have some good people to share the misery with.
Everything in California is a hustle. Even the week has been reduced to three days. When did that happen? Whatever, we can't afford to be out of the shop for a real week anyway, so Friday through Sunday will work just fine. After day one, I have to say the event has run without a hitch. The staff is cool, the organization is top notch and the crowd has been welcoming. Saturday and Sunday are expected to be packed, so as a vendor that's gotta be good.
The highlight today was an exercise in irony. BF Josh roped me into going to an Official Harley Davidson casting call. Seriously. They have a squad of cougars running around enlisting jackasses like us into taking head shots for the motor factory. They want "real" bikers for some shit HD is working on. Actual quotes from the Cougar Squad: "Do you ride a Harley? No? Well, you have some sweet tattoos... That'll work!" How I got into this is beside me, my tats are all old, uncool and mostly hidden. I guess they needed a fat guy with some weak facial hair. Josh rides a Triumph and Duane drank the Honda Chopper punch a long time ago. Get the irony part yet? It was real weird and we all wore official HD jackets and held up booking cards for a few photos. We hoped to learn the secret handshake, but they never let that out. Damn! Of course they loved Chris but he swore he only had one tattoo and didn't ride a Harley. Smart. Enjoy the pics, it'll probably cost me my life, I'm sure Josh and Duane are gonna kill me for posting them but here they are...
Josh in his sweet "Outlaw Biker" pose.
DB was confused at the inseam question on the model release form. "I don't own any pants, how should I know what my inseam measurement is?"
If anyone is going, we're under the pole barn shade-covers, come on by and say hello.