Author: Fuzzygalore

Rider, adventurer, traveler, weirdo, lover of love, and all around curious person. Trying to squeeze the fun-juice out of each and every day.
Metal Gear Garden – York, Pennsylvania

Metal Gear Garden – York, Pennsylvania

While navigating my way around York, Pennsylvania to look for murals and ghost signs, I rode passed a metal garden which had giant flowers made out of gears and things. 

Something about the Gear Garden felt reminiscent of the PennDOT Sculpture Garden in Meadville, Pa.  – another great stop. Perhaps the idea of making something lovely out of throwaways is the connection.

I bet the flowers look especially lovely on a bright blue day.
When I Was Queen of My Own Cardboard Kingdom

When I Was Queen of My Own Cardboard Kingdom

Looking back at my youth, like many of you, I carried the knowledge that anything I dreamed up could be achieved. I gave little consideration to planning how I would do something. Instead, an idea would spring into my mind and I went about making it happen. My child-mind was open to endless possibilities. Actually, scratch that. It was fixed on doing and not what-if-ing things into oblivion.

As a kid, if I wanted to ride White Thunder, the fastest horse in all the land, then dammit, I rode White Thunder! Even if no one else could actually see me doing it. And as far as my building of houses, racing cars, or running a “fishing shop” (weird, right?) – to a grown-up the end results might have looked like a heap of garbage, but not to me. No, my child-eyes weren’t yet poisoned by smothering expectations and the lack of imagination possessed by adults.

Where I grew up, the neighborhood perimeter was almost entirely fenced off. There were two designated entry points and a central loop road lined with bungalows. Now as an adult, I suspect that perimeter fence was in place not so much to keep anyone from coming into our ‘hood, but rather to protect the world at large from the dregs seeping out. The community was largely a haven for drunks, wife-beaters, brawlers, druggies, and creeps.

Beyond the fence ran a major artery lined with stores and small shops. Near the eastern entrance was an appliance store called Trader Horn. Think of it as a PC Richard’s-type place.

That’s me in first grade – circa 1980

Because I was small of body but large on dumbness, a gap in the fence behind Trader Horn gave me a shimmy-through access to the outside world. Why didn’t I just walk out of the neighborhood on the roadway? Because squeezing through a metal fence and jumping off a 5-foot concrete wall was safer than walking on the road. Being around moving cars was dangerous.

Instead, the Trader Horn gap was an escape hatch that would spit me out into the safety of a parking lot. And… I could see their trash from there. Those idiots used to throw away perfectly good appliance boxes.

In the world of the cardboard kingdom, sure dishwasher and washing machine boxes were alright, but finding a refrigerator box? Well, now that, my friends, was the holy grail. When I spied one of those, I’d squeeze through the fence, jump off the wall and drag it back to my house – via the road – which was apparently never dangerous in that scenario. Obviously, the box would protect me from an out of control Plymouth Valiant.

In hindsight, I’m sure that I looked like a tiny hobo dragging those big heavy boxes with my first-grade hands. The cardboard would be slick and slippery and hard to keep a hold of, causing me to stop and reaffirm my grip. :::scraaaaaape::bump:bump::scraaaaaape:: as I dragged my treasure home to set up a house in the broken blacktop and dust patch we called the front yard.

As a kid, I pretty much had the freedom to roam and do as I pleased with little supervision. That was the life of a kid in the 70’s and 80’s. So lugging a giant box home, taking a sharp knife out of the kitchen drawer and cutting windows into my new cardboard castle was never challenged. Chances are good, I probably ran out of the house with said knife in hand raring to begin sawing away. Things are different now. My daughter is graduating high school this year and I still ask her if she wants mommy to cut her steak for her. (No, not really.)

Here I am now at the midway point of my 40’s. Gone is the unfettered imagination and fearless pursuit of my whims. My can-do was replaced with what should I do? My dreams are small. And, I waved so long to the ability to function without fear of being judged or observed or criticized long ago. No longer am I a queen of my castle. Instead, I play the fool.

How times have changed.

Be an Evangelist for the Church of the Motorcycle

Be an Evangelist for the Church of the Motorcycle

And on the seventh day he rested. The Lord spent the day with his feet up, belly full of pizza, alternating between catching the game and snoring himself awake. Arising on the 8th day, the Lord felt well-rested. Cracking his knuckles in a bridge then smoothing his beard, so sayeth the Lord, “Man, I think I’m gonna do som’m awesome, today. I’ve got to make good on that whole platypus thing.”

On the 8th day, the Lord created the motorcycle. And it was good.

All across the land from the 8th day to this day, the Sunday Ride evangelists went forth to spread the good word to the people.

And the evangelists say, “Hear me, dear friends. This is the motorcycle, the bringer of joy. Between these two wheels lies the Kingdom of Heaven and it can be yours. Hold tight to these bars and open your heart to the wind. Fly on the wings of angels.”

Spread the good word, my friends. Sow the seeds of happiness to those who have yet to discover this divine love in their hearts.

You Never See A Motorcycle Parked Outside of a Psychiatrist’s Office and Other Tall Tales

You Never See A Motorcycle Parked Outside of a Psychiatrist’s Office and Other Tall Tales

You’ve probably come across the popular adage, “you never see a motorcycle parked outside of a psychiatrist’s office.” Well, in my cases? Not so much.

It is true that motorcycling is like a form of therapy for many people. The nature of it forces you to be in the moment, which can be a relief for people who obsessively dwell on the past or feel anxious about the future. When you are only focused on now, your perspective shifts.

My struggles with mental health are something I choose not to be secretive about. For reasons unknown to me, it took me far too long to be willing to help myself. My hope is that someone out there who feels like they might need help too but are scared, embarrassed, or any of the millions of other feelings that keep us from being good to ourselves, sees that there is nothing wrong with getting help with your brain. Nothing.

When I first started working with my therapist, he zeroed in right away on the passion I feel for motorcycles and traveling. It is often used as a discussion tool for examining the positive aspects of my life and the attainment of goals. Though not a rider himself, he seems curious about it and what it does for me.

We have what I would call a good rapport. I feel very comfortable talking with him. He seems at ease with me, too. Though that’s his job, I guess. This is my first experience with talk therapy so I don’t really know, I’m just going with my gut.

Occasionally he will breezily offer some anecdote or detail about his own existence. It might be something innocuous such as a quip about a movie he likes that relates to what we’re discussing. Or, when talking about how my eyesight changed seemingly overnight, he mentioned he had a similar abrupt onset experience with Crohn’s disease.

My appointments are usually in the evenings. It isn’t uncommon for me to see my therapist who sits across from me, struggle to stifle a yawn or two behind a clenched fist covering his mouth. He excuses himself each time it happens.

Over time this yawn suppression has become rather funny to me. You know how screwed up a face looks when trying to stop a yawn. You’re not actually hiding it, you’re calling attention to the struggle to keep it from happening. Might as well let ‘er rip.

The fantasy that I’m putting this guy to sleep with my talking amuses me to no end. The story I write in my mind is one of a poor, tired therapist who had a long day of listening to crackpots on the couch talking about their anxieties. His inner monologue is filled with sarcasm, thoughts about stuff he needs to pickup at Target on the way home, and a lot of Jesus Christ, shut up, alreadies.

This week we shared a new experience. Forty five minutes into my session, my therapist gets an uncomfortable look on his face and stands up. He apologetically excuses himself and walks down the hall to the restroom. Apparently I’ve graduated from putting him to sleep to giving him diarrhea.

Now that, my friends is what you call progress!

Will Ride for Donuts

Will Ride for Donuts

My love of donuts is known far and wide amongst my friends. Perhaps you’ve even noticed the pink donut sticker on the BonBon.

I don’t know when the love affair began, really. But I do have many childhood memories of sitting at the counter on a swivel stool with my dad at our local Dunkin Donuts. Spin, spin, spin.

Nearly every time I pass Maple Donuts on Route 30 in York, Pa. I find my wheels turning in to the parking lot automatically. Perhaps donuts have a particularly strong gravitational pull. After all, some people believe Earth is shaped like a donut.

Sometimes I even bring some home to share. Topboxes are great for this.

Have you ever seen a more glorious mailbox than this sprinkley dough hoop? I’ll save you the trouble – you haven’t.

Donuts for dayyyyyys.

One for now, one for later. Even after being squished in a tankbag, the mighty donut delivers.

After pulling in to Huntington, West Virginia this October, I opened my hotel app and found a place to stay. For some, the view from my room window might seem a little lackluster. But to a donut lover? Well… you know.

My holy grail donut stop was definitely Randy’s Donuts in Inglewood, California. Deliciousness and roadside royalty wrapped up in one neat package.

What could possibly surpass the scrumdiddlyumptiousness of eating a donut in a filthy parking lot, under the watchful gaze of that giant rooftop beast? Nothin’, that’s what.

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