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Book details
  • Genre:TRAVEL
  • SubGenre:United States / South / South Atlantic
  • Language:English
  • Pages:301
  • eBook ISBN:9781098302047

Why we do it?

An Artist & An Atheist Cruise

by Maurice O'Neill

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This book is about motorcyclists and why they enjoy it. For non-motorcyclists, it offers an honest insight into why people drive motorcycles, the culture, and their thoughts. The story starts with the preparation of the motorcycles for a five-day journey to the infamous Tail of the Dragon, bordering North Carolina and Tennessee. Motorcyclists will nod their heads in agreement while reading this book, and hopefully, others will appreciate their motivation for knowledge is the key to understanding.
To explain how this book came into existence, my affair with motorcycles began in the summer of 1977 when I was a twenty-one-year-old auto mechanic living thirty-miles east of Dublin City, and a stone's throw from the Irish Sea. Speed was my passion. Back in the day, funerals did occur, but drinking bouts and regaling were more frequent. In youth, we understood that the answer to life, like the roll of dices, was only relevant if you waited for them to settle. Nothing was complicated: if you didn't like fire, you simply stayed out of the kitchen. We didn't have a proper motorway in Ireland until 2009. Prior to that, it was just Boreens and two-lane roads. A Boreens meant one car had to give way, while, two lanes meant, if you held tight to the ditch, you might retain your wing mirrors. However, on a motorcycle there was always room, so we drove them like we stole them: throttle open wide, and light pressure applied to the rear brake while cornering to keep the frame from flexing. In those days, the pedigree of motorcycle technology and aerodynamic design was a game of chance, and us riders, dare-devils, oblivious to peril… until it occurred. My first real mount of note was a Honda 900 SS, with a rattling cam-chain, and an over-sensitive rear brake, that couldn't be trusted in the wet. Under ideal conditions, it could nudge 130 MPH. This required no wind, a decent bit of straight road, setting my feet on the passenger foot-pegs and lie supine on the fuel-tank. It was an effective strategy but made for interesting cornering. Without your foot-dragging on the brake, the frame flexed and wallowed, creating a snaking effect. You didn't so much exit a corner as slither out. Hence, we had a saying for motorcyclists, "There goeth he on a breath and a prayer, God bless his poor mother, and the ambulance driver with his shovel." On reflection, these decades later, I realize, I'm describing a raving lunatic. Moving along! In 2004, marriage brought me to America, and we set up home in New Jersey. Our first house was a purchase of love, so only fitting the garage be adorned with a brand new, blue Hayabusa, its Bridgstone tires replaced with Michelins. o put my passion for motorcycles into perspective, since we purchased our house and detached garage in 2004, I have circulated more than $1.3 million on motorcycles. It may sound like madness, but I set myself the real quest to own and ride every make and model of motorcycle that I like. Also, I have motorcycling friends who occasionally visit, so a spare bike is always appreciated and expected. I'm not finished of course. New models continue to excite me and there are many more motorcycles on my shopping list, a used Hellcat would be an excitable dream, perhaps a Bimota, and definitely a Motus, and a Ninja H2R, and, Jesus lay it on me with butter, a 4-cylinder Ducati Panigale R in red. I think you grasp the picture I paint. Dreams are what keep hope in our hearts, youth in our stride, humor in our minds, and our significant other, as they should always be, in awe.
About the author
My birthplace was Drogheda, Co. Louth, Ireland. The year was 1956, a simple time when parents were hands-on and schools predominately in the charge of Nuns and Christian Brothers while the Clergy were advocates of God's thus incapable of error. As a trained auto-mechanic I departed for Ethiopia in January 1987 working as an unpaid volunteer with the humanitarian organization and later professionally with the International Federation and Committee of the Red Cross. Presently, I reside in New Jersey, America with my companion, friend, lover, and wife, Stella Simpas. Now sixty-three years young, I have been writing for decades, with the rejection slips to validate it, or worse the hollow praise of vanity publishers who seek my patronage for a financial contribution. I would say to every aspiring writer, to believe in yourself. Never be afraid to expose yourself as a writer. Persevere in your desire. Rape criticism for the benefit and not the wounds it inflicts. Seek the extraordinary beauty that your words can create. Be fearless in probing the depths of your thoughts, and shut off the outside world when they are flowing. That's what writers do I suppose. My webpage is WWW.MAURICE.IE where you can read excerpts from all my books or purchase hard copies. Electronic copies are available on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and most online outlets. Please do buy a book or two, perhaps gift one to a friend. Hell buy them all! It helps me along the road of my dreams and the next book. Thanks for the visit. Do come again.

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