American Made Stoke
My Daily Stoke.
The moment I feel that wave catch me, I push up then stand on my board and attack the wave, Im stoked. When I’m 60’ ft deep diving a wreck off the coast chillin’ with sharks and huge tropical fish, Im so stoked. Skydiving over the Florida Keys just before a thunderstorm I’m so stoked, but these are all isolated incidents that take planning, training and the right waves to go surf, so how do I get my dosage of Daily Stoke immediately, everyday? I use 107 CI / 1750cc American Made motorcycle to get me there.
I own a 2019 Harley Davidson Softail Street Bob, and every morning I take a nice long ride to get stoked for the day. Going to work I ride, leaving work I ride, when it’s raining I ride, when it’s beautiful out, I ride. Being on my motorcycle provides me with my daily stoke in every way imaginable. I feel so alive each time I put on my brown leather gloves and turn on my bike, because I know I’m about to have the time of my life. I don’t need the perfect wave, or clear water at high tide to get stoked daily. All I need is my American made Motorcycle.
I am a USMC 1371 Combat Engineer Combat Veteran, 2 tours to Afghanistan. Marjah in 2010 and Sangin in 2011. Coming home from that environment I needed that drug we like to call War. The adrenaline, the pure idea of just staying alive, the brotherhood, and purpose. I craved all of it once I returned home knowing I’ll never see Combat again. In 2012 I bought my first Harley, a 2008 HD Dyna Street Bob with 500 miles on it. I put over 15,000 miles on that bike in the span of a year- I found my source for adrenaline. I found a purpose, and pushing my limits in life. I was reckless for that year, I went 100mph everywhere, I lane split everyday, and I legitimately pushed my bike as hard as it could go. I was young and I wanted to live. The freedom that comes with being on a bike, there is nothing around you, it is you & the bike. There are no distractions from your phone, there is no diversions, it’s only you, the motorcycle and the open road. A lot of people have motorcycles, and I get it, the metric bikes are fun, they’re fast (very fucking fast) and they are inexpensive—- but It’s not the same as being on a Harley Davidson.
Harley Davidson began in 1903 by 2 men, William Harley and Arthur Davidson. They created one of the most iconic and legendary pieces of Modern American History. The HD logo is one of the most recognizable logos around the world. There is a reason for all of this, the Harley Davidson Motorcycle is pure fun. No strings attached Fun. If you don’t get stoked being on a Harley switching into 6th gear at 72 MPH and hitting it to 90 on the open road with that Milwaukee 8 pulling you into that daily stoke, i don’t know what to tell you, maybe you’re inept to stoke.
The Veteran community is one of the main reason for the explosion of Harley Riders in the 40’s, 50’s and 60’s. After World War 2 there was a surplus of Harley Davidsons that we’re never used/ used in the war & sold cheaply back in the states, and who bought these wholesaled motorcycles? Veterans returning from combat that needed their drug called War. They craved freedom, adrenaline, purpose, brotherhood, and the pure feeing that is “being alive”. They found their purpose on a Harley, traveling across the US on the open road, making motorcycle clubs so they can get together and go ride on the weekends. They rode together because they wanted to experience the stoke that comes with being on a bike. Now we all know what happened from the 1970’s until Now, Motorcycle clubs took on a whole new persona over time.
Why don’t more veterans now own bikes? Maybe they don’t want to wreck, maybe they don’t have the time, maybe it’s financial reasons, maybe the bikes are intimidating, I’m not sure of the actual reasons. What I do know is that I ask my brothers from the Corps to get bikes so we can ride, but it’s always the same thing, “yeah I want one” but they never pull the trigger (but they were so good at pulling triggers before?).
I was T-Boned on my 08’ Dyna in December 2014, I flipped over the handlebars and tumbled down the road for 300 meters. It sucked ass. Definitely wasn’t stoked. But my passion for riding never stopped- so in November 2018 I got a new bike, been riding it every single day since I got it. Is it a financial burden for me? Sometimes, mainly because I can’t stop buying new shit for the bike (new bars, Powder-coating my chrome, pipes, and services) but I still want to ride even If the bike takes my money. Before I rode my first bike, I was intimidated by them when I was younger, they are loud, you gotta use both hands and both feet to get it to go, you gotta have balance and commit to the ride. Whatever the reason is you don’t have or don’t ride a Harley, I’m sure it’s just an excuse.
The Daily Stoke, the open road, and the Harley are all waiting for you. These machines were never intended for old men to ride 50 MPH. These machines were made to go fast, made for the rebellious soul, made for warfighters through all generations, made for the human that wants more, the one desires to stand out above the rest, they were made for you.