We were somewhere between San Francisco and our Santa Barbara destination. Your hands full of hose. Looking up in mischievous impatience, you catch my eyes and raise an eyebrow sensing a question.
“...I just never thought I’d see you siphoning gas from a strange car outside a biker bar in the middle of the night...”
“You think I was never a teenager?”

It was short walk from the apartment on Union Square to the village sandal shop that was run by Hells Angels. There is nothing more noble than a kneeling Angel as he traces your foot and asks,
“How long do you want the straps?”
I had an idea I wanted them very long, but didn’t know how to say without seeming like it was a lot of trouble. I imagine it was Kyle that broke my indecision by interrupting,
“She wants them to wrap up her legs and around her waist twice.”
The angel tilted his head up with a confused complexion,
“How would that look...”
Kyle pursed his lips, raised an eye brow, turned on one heel and began searching the notice board. The biker lumbered to his feet and embarrassingly asked if they could have the twenty-five bucks in advance.
I still have those simple leather Grecian sandals. In some places they are brittle from sea water and there’s a bit gnawed from Maine rodents that aches my heel when I wear them. But then, every pair of shoes has a story.

All of those Z Z looking guys have the choice of impersonating Santa or Bikers.
And ... I am wondering if, as children, future bikers used the card & clothespin trick on the spokes of their Stingray (with banana seats!) to get the Hog sound they would future fall in love w/ ...


  1. your vignettes are fascinating...siphoning gas outside a biker bar might be a bit dangerous...lol.

  2. Ha! I used clothespins to clip a playing card onto the frame of my bike so the spokes would make that roaring sound. Nice memory.

  3. Oh, I wonder too, what the biker guys were like as little boys. It would be fascinating to go back in time to see them. I have siphoned a time or two meeself. Patoo!!

  4. Love it and appreciate the Union Square memories. My stomping grounds.

    Moondustwriter.com (blogger doesn't like my name for some reason)

  5. yeah, these burly bikers all seem like sweethearts outside of there gang...but i'm not sure i'd try siphoning their tanks...yikes!

  6. Union Square....when I was going to the AA on Sutter street, we'd go there at lunch. Robert Shields was impressing and disgusting many folks there. Was a great time.

    Also, we had a neighbor across the street who was in the Hells Angels.

    So many stories, so little time.

    Those were the days.....you got around. Cheers!

  7. Tom, Yes, I am remembering a time roading-cross-country and my boy was only four... walking through a crowd of Angels at a small motel, and he signaled out one of the largest of bikers with "There is Santa Claus!", they are roared with laughter. -J

  8. I met a couple of huge biker guys in a candy shop once. They were all over the place...! :) They looked happy and friendly. On their backs I read HA... Hmmmm...
    Happy TT!

  9. I used to love doing that with the cards and clothespins :) I need a new bike...

  10. Wow, that sounds very dangerous. The sandals sound wonderful.
    Happy TT

  11. Can one even find clothespins for sale still?

  12. “You think I was never a teenager?”

    That is a great line!

    I had the clothespin motor on my bike too. Never made me yearn for a motorcycle, Hog or otherwise, though.

  13. so thoroughly enjoyable to read this, jayne...

  14. It triggered a visual for me of a kid on a banana seat morphing into a later biker on a hog...wonderful!

  15. Like, AngelMay...loved he clothespins on my wheel spokes.

  16. I loved doing that to my bike! I used multiple cards to make it louder, but I never became a Hell's Angel!

  17. I enjoyed your post!
    brought back memories of my younger years in Italy spent basically on motorcycles....

  18. As inventive and compulsive as always. I have NEVER stopped reading one of your posts half way through thinking "ah, I'll just skip to the end and make a quick comment". That says a lot about quality.

  19. Alan, I think that may say more about your patience! -J

  20. Hmmm thanks for sharing and for reminding me that I need to get a new pair of sandals. It is starting to get hot in Greece, heheh!


  21. Loved the story.
    Loved even more, your boy's comment you shared in Comments, "...Santa Claus..."(!)