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2 Days of Partying

Since 2 days we have had a house to ourselves…. reason for the same….. the in-laws are travelling & thus the house is empty. The same indicates that for the next 3 days we were going to be partying there without anyone around, kinda like school or college where in you wait for the opportunity to have the house to yourself when parents aren’t home & party like there is no tomorrow 🙂

Bike Ride View

Random Pic During Bike Ride

So the 1st day, due to excessive work, we could not capitalize on it as we got done late from work, post which a severe headache made my life hell. Day 2 (which also happened to be a Holiday due to Dassera, a Hindu Festival) was going to be a make up day basis the same. I woke up, went for a bike ride which was awesome, as the early morning breeze was spectacular. Also after a while, I rode past Siddhivinayak Temple at Prabhadevi, went all the way till Shivaji Park & back….. absolutely amazing the experiance was! If the breeze is an indication of the winter, mid Novemeber through till end of February is going to be awesome fun, specially for bike rides. Got home, decided to play some NBA2k13 on the Xbox360 which, according to Mihir & me, is the finest basketball game ever!!! Played with Chicago Bulls & Derrick Rose, awesome fun way to start the day!

Yummmmyyyyy!!!

Post that, crashed & passed out for about a good 4 hours, woke up to an awesome lunch at home which was a full-on punjabi cuisine spread & included fried papads… Confession time, I love fried papads, I can like just keep eating them without stopping. Through the afternoon, decided to go to the in-laws house for some general chilling & to make up for lost time the night before. Chilled over there with Vishal, Ekta & Ra. After ages, did lots of Sheesha also had loads Beer, current favorite in local beers is Miller! Evening was spent eating Dosas for Dinner & a Telegu Horror movie on cable…

The Only way to Drink!!!

Awesomeness!!!

Day 3 began with work as usual, though the POA was to have this major Non-Veg feast at the in laws. For lunch, we ordered food from The Bombay Kitchen which was brilliant: the Chilli Dog, Rice with Indonesian Gravy, Stuffed Chicken & Tenderloine was amazing! Come evening, we all were there – Mihir, Yooti, Vishal, Ekta & Rachita. On the menu, which was totally being managed & cooked by Rachita, there was Salad with Chorizo & and an Orange Reduction dressing, creamed Spinach & Mushroom, Masala Sausages, Chicken Sorpotel & Rice (Do check the below slide show to see the amazing food pictures). The food was simply delicious every one ate to their hearts content & more. Obviously there were beers, though this time, due to non availibility of Miller, we had ordered King Fisher Ultra, there was also a Rum, Thumbs Up, Ice & Chaat Masala Cocktail we call Boondi made, again lots of Sheesha was done & general chilling happened. Also through the day, Mihir & I played a bit of Guitar, currently our obsession is learning how to play the Blues.

Happiness on a Plate!!!

Overall, out of the 3 days where we had the house to ourselves, we made most of the 2 days & had awesome food, alcohol & loads of fun!!! The food, courtesy Rachita, most definitely was the show stopper. Also occasions like this somehow just become so much more exciting as there is a time-line attached to having fun before the house gets occupied again. Hopefully in a week or 2 we will have the house to ourselves as most of the family is travelling basis Diwali, fingers crossed 🙂

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Posted by on October 29, 2012 in Bikes & Builders

 

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A Tribute to Billy Lane

Choppers Inc Billy Lane’s Brand

Billy Lane!

By now, people who have been reading our blog know that we follow the Great Biker Builder Off very closely and builders and riders like Indian Larry, Arlen Ness, etc. are gods to us. Today’s article is taking off from that serial and the 1st time we saw it and were introduced to this maverick crazy builder, Billy Lane. The first episode I ever saw of this show was Billy Lane vs. Roger Bourget. At that time, I had no clue of what the show was about or who these guys were, building some crazy-ass choppers. Watched the episode and re-runs of the same multiple times. Was amazed at the brilliance of Billy Lane who’s philosophy of building a chopper was simple & stemmed from the basics…………bikes assembled using spares at your disposal and chopping metal and steel to make spares to fit your ride = Choppers. Superbly brilliant & simple 🙂

This is so Awesome!!!

Brilliance!!!

Another aspect of Billy Lane’s personality which stood out during the show was his approach to life and living it by the moment & the same also reflected in the way he built his bikes, wherein he would always have some vague design in his mind about how he wanted his bike to look, but in terms of innovations, he would do it on the fly. Good examples of the same are the rimless bikes called the Psycho Billy Cadillac & The Chronic. Picture for the same & a Video featured below. Post this, saw multiple episodes of Biker Build Off specially the ones which featured Billy Lane – have mentioned some of the same below. Also a worthy mention over here is the episode with Indian Larry as the same not only showed great bike building powers of both Larry & Lane, but also showed the spirit of riders and brotherhood between these great builders as Larry helped out Billy get his bike working and started during the course of their ride when Billy was having some bike trouble.

  1. Billy Lane vs. Roger Bourget : Original run : September 28, 2002
  2. Billy Lane vs. Dave Perewitz : Original run : September 1, 2003
  3. Billy Lane vs. Indian Larry : Original run : September 1, 2003
  4. Billy Lane vs. Mike Brown : Original run : March 8, 2005
  5. Billy Lane vs. Russell Mitchel : Original run : August 7, 2006

Hard at Work

William David (Billy) Lane (born February 6, 1970 in Miami, Florida) is widely known as a builder of custom motorcycles, owner of Choppers Inc. He holds seven U.S. patents on motorcycle parts and accessories and has authored two books – an autobiography, Billy Lane’s Chop Fiction: It’s not a Motorcycle, Baby, It’s a Chopper (2004, Motorbooks International) and Billy Lane’s How to Build Old School Choppers, Bobbers And Customs (2005, Motorbooks International). Lane also holds an Associate in Science degree in Mechanical Engineering from Florida State University as well as a Bachelor in Science degree in Mechanical Engineering from Florida International University, graduating in 1997.

Psyco Billy!!!

Also post buying a bike & while we were collating content for the blog, we found out that Billy Lane was imprisoned, post being found guilty for a drunk driving fatal crash & is going to be in prison till October 2014. The news was extremely disheartening considering the career and the work of this legendary builder & the way he built his life & his bikes. This post of mine is a tribute to one of my favorite chopper builders of all time – Billy Lane!

For people who want to see other stuff by Billy Lane do check out http://www.choppersinc.com/ its awesome!!!

 
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Posted by on June 28, 2012 in Bikes & Builders

 

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The Weekend Bike Rides & More

The Stare Down

Kids Killing it on Skates

Revisited Haywards 5000 (Strong Indian Beer) after ages on Thursday evening. Yes, the weekend came in early with the gang assembling at my house fondly  known as the Adda (Headquarters). Finished friday work and moved into the weekend celebrations with alcohol and good food. Then came the Saturday morning bike ride which was past Worli and Nariman Point; there was a brief staredown between me and a Siberien Huskie as you can see in the picture. Also on Saturday and Sundays, there are skating classes for kids where in parents block a certain aspect of Nariman Point & kids race around there which seems like a lot of fun! Then took Mihir to Hanging Gardens through Walkeshwar. Most of the day was spent drinking Carona and watching movies!

That’s One Mean Machine

Jason Statham on the Ducati Desmsedici RR

After watching the trailer of Expendables 2 and in our drunk frenzy we decided to watch the Expendables – it was too much fun watching the crazy action & awesome dialogues in the movie. 300 & Expendebles are a must watch if you are hammered…the experiance is unmatched. Post watching the movie and seeing iconic scenes like Micky Rourke riding a bike, I did some R & D on the movie & realised the movie has some crazy bikes (we will be doing an entire post on the same soon); some interesting bike facts around the movie, The motorcycle that Jason Statham’s character, Lee Christmas, is riding is the Italian made street legal MotoGP race inspired Ducati Desmosedici RR. This sport-bike carries a price tag of $75,000, has a top speed of 190+ mph (305 km/h). This 989cc 4 cylinder produces 200hp while only weighing 377 pounds (171 kg). Of the only 1,500 made, 500 made it to the U.S. and they all sold out within five hours. Tom Cruise was the lucky recipient to receive the first one imported to the U.S.  Evening on Saturday was spent eating the yummiest burittos ever made by the Mrs. …totally bad ass!!!

Killer View

Gate Way of India

Sunday morning began with a bike ride past Apollo Bunder & the legendary Gateway of India; the sites & sounds here were amazing considering you have the Taj hotel and the sea at a stretch of an arm’s distance; also the view from the edge of the footpath is brilliant.

Spent most part of the ride with the bike parked and glaring at the view, then headed to Nariman point to see kids skate and then back. Went to Moshe’s for brunch where the discussion centered around how good The Avengers movie is & the brilliance of the plot, characters, script, dialogue, etc. Got back, decided to watch Mark Whalberg’s Contraband which was a decently exciting movie, passed out for a bit, then woke up to some exciting Grey Goose Popsicles which were made by Yooti (sister in law)  & the Moto GP Portual leg.

Post dinner, lazed watched Super Natural, ate Kaluha flavored chocolate dessert again courtesy Yooti which was the perfect end to the superb weekend!

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Grey Goose Popsicles


 
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Posted by on May 7, 2012 in Trips & Rides

 

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The Photography and Bike connection

To start with, I think we are both wannabe Photographers and Bikers. At some level, both these hobbies are interconnected.

Let me explain. Both these can only be enjoyed to their fullest once you are financially secure – that would be between 30-50 for most people; the excitement and adrenaline rush one feels riding the bike on an empty road is equal to a great picture taken; like a camera, a bike needs constant attention and customization, this to fit your style of shooting/riding, both activities are social and get you to meet new people who share similar interests. The list goes on and on….

I generally carry 3 cameras when I mix both riding and photography; an Olympus SPUZ 565, Nikon D5100 and my handy telephone camera, currently it is a HTC sensation XE. It is a pain to lug all these around with additional lenses for the Nikon but the end result is definitely worth the effort. I would like to emphasize all hobbies or past times do require effort; people generally have a perception that one can pick up a hobby and magically he will find Utopia! Reality check does not happen………..you have to put in effort. That being said, I have been learning about photography for about 4 years now. The facilitation started pretty much after getting married and seeing awesome wedding pictures clicked by a friend (the gorgeous pictures were of the Mrs. I look scary on camera). Anyway, after a lot of R&D and debates, I bought a super zoom Olympus SP 565 UZ camera, read up everything there was to about camera and photography. To give you an idea I was familiar with words and phrases like aperture, depth of field, HD, FPS, Shutter Speed 1/2000, bulb, macro etc. From then on it’s been a snowball effect, pretty much live with my camera; I don’t take that many pictures though.

By now you are hopefully getting where I am going with this. Post the purchase of our bike, both my photography and riding have merged together seamlessly; the locations I discovered while travelling across the city are absolutely amazing. Check out some of my work in the gallery below. Beyond that, it has also gotten rid of my reservation with communicating with strangers. I end up speaking to people about both the bike and taking their picture; also strangers will randomly come and help you when you are juggling trying to change lenses while holding up the bike.

About the pictures – I generally shoot using the P mode on both my camera; this is where you control the aperture and the camera does the rest for you. I find pictures with controlled depth of field to be more dramatic, I try to follow the rule of thirds and general best practises but most times the discipline eludes me. I shoot because I enjoy doing it not because I want to boast about my technical genius with the camera. Over the last few months, I have found my zoom lens to be an invaluable tool; this especially when I am shooting from bridges or getting in a portrait from across the road. The Olympus has now been restricted to shooting panorama and macro images (the Nikon is just so much better). I am still figuring the ideal way to carry my camera stand on the bike… currently the bag I have does not support a stand. Once that is done I pretty much will be sorted.

Do share your riding experiences and images if you enjoy either of these hobbies. I hope to cover a lot more of photography while adding to our riding, food, movies and other escapades as we publish more articles on the blog. The street Panorama is where we live – do enjoy the gallery and leave comments.

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Posted by on April 27, 2012 in Trips & Rides

 

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