Yeah I Thirst And I Slake
Originally, this area of the magazine featured a somewhat distasteful photo of a young girl in a compromising position. No one would print it, citing those pesky kiddie porn laws. So, at the last minute, I scrambled to put these two pages together. That should explain why it's so disjointed.
My dad was, essentially, an everyman's mad scientist, a family-man, suburban Edison. After dinner, he didn't hit the bar (though he often did have a drink), and he didn't go play cards with the Boys. No--he went down to the basement to the drawing board. Literally. He spent his evenings dreaming up and rendering machines. Some, I assume, were work-related: hoists, conveyors, the like. Others were his brainchildren--motorized tricycles, his favorite form of automobile.
Maybe he read too many issues of Popular Mechanics as a child. All those Future Watch articles which posited the three-wheeler as the Automobile of the Future. Or maybe he just appreciated the utility of three wheels--tighter turning radii, motorcycle street classification, flexible design possibilities. Whatever. The fact is, he made some pretty fucking cool trikes. As the Chief Engineer for a roofing equipment company, he had the run of a manufacturing plant and enough latitude to whip up custom parts for his latest brainstorms.
His first trike predated the ATV craze by at least 5 years. Short and squat, it seated two on a bench with a wide motherfucker handlebar for steering. The engine--either a 5- or 10-horse Briggs & Stratton--sat behind the seat. There were two gears: go and idle. It had a handlebar throttle (like a motorcycle), and a handle between your legs for engaging the belt. Oh, and no brakes, of course--I think they were too much trouble to install.
I loved those machines. When I was about 7, we had two of them--my brother invariably took the 10-horsepower model; I got the fiver. We had abundant undeveloped woods and bike trails all around us, the perfect environment for these beasts. On asphalt, I think they peaked at about 35 mph; pretty fucking fast for a garage-made vehicle. Surprisingly, though, they weren't much of a death trap--the wide rear wheelbase provided a stable footprint; the only way to flip one (and I should know, since I did it a couple times) was to catch a rear wheel on a small tree or such--without a differential, that wheel would climb, taking that side of the trike up in the air with it. And if you got thrown, that fucking thing kept on running--the throttle stayed in place, and there was no kill switch on the early models.
Slowly, though, they broke down and fell victim to neglect. My brother grew up; I got bored riding the same dirt tracks. (And I couldn't travel to any other areas in town--the cops had stopped me enough times, riding that thing through the development, that I was rightly worried of getting in deep shit for taking one onto the road.) Property developers slowly took our bike trails away from us, replacing them with industrial parks and loading bays, and at least one of those trikes died a rusty death on the side of the house under a tarpaulin.
His second and third creations were street legal. Officially classified as motorcycles--complete with Jersey plates and registration--those two trikes were even more amazing than their predecessors (see photo). I must admit that I preferred the first design--constructed entirely of sheet metal, it offered a certain security, flying down the highway at 65, wind whipping your head around inside the helmet (a legal requirement due to the motorcycle classification). The second street-legal trike was smaller and had a fiberglass nose. For some reason, it felt less safe, though I know it was probably less dangerous than most used cars.
Four years ago, he unveiled his latest projects--a pair of refined, off-road trikes. Each perfect for one adult, but capable of accommodating a cramped pair, these babies came with an honest-to-god steering wheel, kill switch, roll bar and disc brakes. They are smaller and leaner than their ancestors, and tougher than any of those store-bought ATVs. On their maiden weekend, we got one up to 55 on the asphalt; open up the throttle off-road, and you end up sore from all the bouncing around. One of my fellow test pilots accidentally tried out the roll bar by taking a turn too tightly and too quickly; the cage was bent a little, but his head was still intact, so we considered it a success.
My folks moved out of the area last year, leaving the trikes behind with my brother-in-law, who has fifty acres and a 10-year old son (the perfect combination). Unfortunately, my sister isn't likely to let Bob and Sean take them out of the barn; she's too afraid of the world, not to mention our father's home-brewed death traps.
Shame, really, to think of another generation of Koyen Trikes dying a rusty death underneath the tarp. If I had a few acres and not too many neighbors, I'd rent a truck and rescue them, occasionally gassing them up and test-driving the fruit of my dad's imagination.
I see many of my father's odd passionate streaks rush through me. Late nights in front of the computer--my version of his drawing table--choking down frustration, trying to create that unknown something, trying to make a mark that stands out, all the while still coloring inside the lines. Playing by the rules, in other words.
And I do play by the rules. I work my cock off to keep the bills paid. I don't fuck around on my girlfriend. I pet the cats and walk the dog. Ironically, these mundane rituals keep me level. The daily work teaches me temperate ambition. The fidelity teaches me honor. The dog has taught me patience.
Without them, I don't know what I'd have. Self-critical irony and self-aggrandizement aside--I see a certain appeal to the life of a hermit, living day-to-day in a trailer somewhere with nothing but the bugs and heat as company. Somewhere isolated, deep in the midwest perhaps. A minimal life, one without domestic trappings, one without urban haste.
But then I consider my need for connection, my drive to associate, to keep my head, my egotist compulsion to bleed my heart and produce a product in order to take the edge off my depressive side. I nurture the mania, exploiting it while it lasts, to delay the inevitable lull as long as possible.
I know that I wouldn't last long enough to file a tax return in my new state. That's why I won't own a gun: I slip too often.
Life is frivolity, really, and without those mundane artifacts to keep me steady, I'd likely put the heat to my head. Again, no joke. And no pedestals. It's a goddamned fact.
Date: Wed, 22 Jan
Crank...Hey you rude fucking male! Why the hell do you have such an attitude?? Well, anyway.. I find you so crude, I want to FUCK YOUR BRAINS OUT! SO THERE!! Now what do you think of us women?? You want some?? <<I'll give you a few hickey's too =)>>
I will tell you the shitest story ever when I was young my mom and my fucking dad broke up and my mom took care of me and my biosexfag brother my mom didn't no that when I feel alseep he would do sick shit to me in my sleep well fuck that part but I got old and dumder and started smoking buds and some fuck up family from califonia well there is nothing wrong with smoking bud right wrong you start that shit and the other shit you will try using like crank or acid well I don't know about you but the frist day I tried crank I ask this bitch if it would do anything to me she said no its just like smoke buds and I was only 14 well it killed my mind then I tried acid and went even more crazy then I started steeling all the fucking time then I met some bitch that lied thu her fucking ass and she gave me aids and know no one knows and people fuck me in my sleep and get aids I just kicked her stupid ass for giving me aids she moved to california and I just found out that when I was not around she gave my friends aids my 13 teen year old nefew aids and the fucking bitch play blood brothers with my 6 year old nefew and 10 year old cousin and know half my family is going to hate me and people that fuck me in my sleep are going to get it and I going to spread it to a couple of hos well i bet half the world is going to hell and know seems to care .............from ADAM S CRANE CALL ME UP AT 509-XXX-XXXX