Binding
 

The Lonesome Lowdown Long-gone Outbound Scootertrash Blues

Mark Tiger Edmonds

     This, Tigerís third book of motorcycle stories, is another collection of tales about roads, the rides, and the riders. Itís about going it the long way around and taking the hard way out. It would be a damn shame if these stories were lost to history and censorship and political correctness and a lack of being told.

ISBN: 978-1-60489-083-9 Trade paper

Regular: $21.00

Sale: $12.60

ISBN:  978-1-60489-082-2 Library binding

Regular: $32.00

Sale: $19.20

 Pages 230

 About the Author: 

I was born into a Golden Age in America; I celebrated my 65th birthday a month or so ago. These were the best times this country has ever known for a lot of reasons. I grew up in an era when America had the finest education system the world has ever known.

So, I ride old German iron. When Iím not doing that, I am often afield with a dog and a gun or standing in an incoming tide with my good fishing pole or riding my horse. I prefer pale horses and all my good dogs have been black. I like my women laughing, my occasional drink of whiskey is taken neat, and I drink my coffee black. I canít abide a soap opera or a psychodrama. I am better off outdoors, unless itís cold, and then Iím better off farther south and outdoors.

 

 Excerpt From the Book:

     The first bear was smaller than the one in Vermont a week earlier.  I saw it over on the left shoulder of the road from about a hundred yards.  As the speed limit is thirty-five on The Skyline Drive, I had ample time to slow down.  By the time the bear was on the center line, I had closed the distance to around ten yards.  I stopped, and so did the bear.  He looked at me a minute, like he was trying to figure out what I might be.  I recognized the look, as I have been getting it from humans, especially women, for years.  Then the bear continued on to the far side of the road.

     The next bear happened another twenty miles south down The Skyline Drive.  It was a big cub, maybe a yearling.  At first I mis-identified it as a real big dog.  Then, from maybe fifteen or so yards away, this bear stopped right on the center line.  Then he stood up on his back legs.  He brought his paws up in front of his face as he peered at me in a kind of near-sighted squint.  It was very cute. 

     We stayed like that, me stopped with my feet on the ground and one hand on the throttle and my other hand on the horn.  And the young bear stayed like that, standing up on two legs, for a full minute or two.  Then, he apparently got bored, dropped back down on all four feet and slowly ambled off into the woods on the far side of the road, occasionally looking back over his shoulder at me.

     The final bear was near the middle of The Skyline, on my way south to The Blue Ridge Parkway.  And this one refused to cross the road.  And I wasn't real eager to ride by her.  I feared she had a cub with her there in the underbrush beside the road.  Whatever the reason, she just stood her ground and glared at me.  It took me a minute or two to figure out that she wasn't going to move.  Took me another couple minutes to get my courage up to ride on by her.  I got way over to the far side of the road, and I hurried.  She stayed where she was, her head down and swaying from side to side, and she frowned at me the whole way by her. 

     Between the last two bears I got to see a coyote.  Most of the eastern coyotes I have seen have been cross-bred coydogs of some kind, but this one looked purebred.  Like the bears, he was crossing the road as I came around a curve.  He stopped in mid-road, checked me out, and then hurriedly turned around and beat it back to where he had come from.

     On this same ride, I also got to hang out with a herd of deer for quite awhile.  I was at a picnic table, and they were grazing in a nearby meadow that was screened off from the highway, The Blue Ridge Parkway, by a line of trees.  Might have been a dozen of them.  Occasionally one of the deer would lift its head and look my way, but they didn't seem bothered by my presence.  I had a cup of coffee and smoked a cigarette while I watched them graze.  The coffee steam and cigarette smoke drifted away from the deer, as I was, luckily, downwind of them.

     About then a giant SUV roared into the picnic area, and two or three screeching children erupted from the back seat.  An adult came out of each front door, both of them yappering on cell phones.  When I looked back to the meadow, the deer had fled.  By the time the kids had gotten up to full-scale screaming, I had too.       Down the road, a few hours later, I stopped again.  And as I had a cup of coffee there, I recalled some of the other rides up and down The Blue Ridge.  I remembered a time when motorcycles from a nearby national rally had literally clogged the road.  I thought about the time Bosco had raced the Devil to The Highside at the Peaks of Otter.  It turned out to be a draw.  I recalled the time the hail and thunderstorm came upon us at The Fences.  And then I reminisced some about the time the federal tree-trimming crew had dropped a tree on me down at the south end of this road.  I also remembered the time I had snapped a throttle cable on a downhill curve.  I thought about the very first time I had ever ridden this road, thirty-some years ago.  I recalled a bad fog on one occasion.  And I thought about sundown and wildflowers in bloom and the leaves turning to autumn colors and the haze in the mountains, like the smoke from many fires.

     But this day was going into the memory banks as one of the best.  The weather was fine, the road was empty, the police and wildlife were cooperative, and the scenery was magnificent.  But the day and the road came to an end as they always do. 

     In spite of the fineness of the day, as I sought shelter for the evening, I recalled a sad verse from The Lonesome Lowdown Outbound Scootertrash Blues.  I have ridden out beyond The Highside, I have been on a Magic Carpet Ride.  And I have rode The Lost Highway, too.  I have ridden in The Lonesome Valley and along beside The Blue Bayou.  I have ridden through rainbows in the full moon light, back then when the road was brand new.

Synopsis: 

This, Tigerís third book of motorcycle stories, is another collection of tales about roads, the rides, and the riders. Itís about going it the long way around and taking the hard way out. It would be a damn shame if these stories were lost to history and censorship and political correctness and a lack of being told.

 

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