’Tis The Season, Part II

Steve Lita American Iron Magazine Editor

Steve Lita, American Iron Magazine Editor

RIDE TO WORK by Steve Lita, Editor

He who travels the most crooked road to get there wins

In a continuation of the theme I started in last month’s column, once again I use this forum to lament the dreary winter season. This issue goes on sale January 8, 2019. Even the southern states are feeling the grip of winter. Heck, you southerners might have even had to break out the long sleeve shirts. As of writing this column we’ve already had a major snowfall in New England, which caught the weather forecasters completely off guard and frozen precipitation predictions grew from 1-3″ of snow (no big deal) to 7-10″ within hours (a big deal).

While last month’s column concentrated on new product press releases and planning tech stories for upcoming issues, this month I’m consumed with story planning of a different kind. It’s time to start looking forward to spring and the annual pilgrimage to Daytona Bike Week. By the way, be sure to check out the progress on the Klock Werks-built Daytona Giveaway Bike on page 74. It’s time to start concocting the outrageous travel arrangements for the annual trip to Florida in early March.

It’s a bit of tradition around the AIM offices to come up with some intricate travel plans—which don’t exactly coincide with the plans of colleagues—with the hopes of everyone arriving safely at our destination at approximately the same time. Having been with this publishing company fifteen years now, I’ve learned from the masters. I’ve seen my share of contorted arrangements. And I’ve learned: the more convoluted the better. You’ve no doubt heard the cliché “He who dies with the most toys wins.” Well around here it’s more like “He who travels the most crooked road to get there wins.”

There’s still some details that need to be ironed out, but here’s what I know about the not-so-direct road to Daytona 2019. Lloyd Greer, of Lloyd’z Performance fame, and his team of manic mechanics at Indian Motorcycles of Charlotte will be shipping some customized Indian baggers, just like the ones shown on page 22, out to California for me and Lloyd and some guest riders. After an obligatory dipping of the toes into the Pacific Ocean, we’ll put our riding boots back on and climb aboard the hopped-up machines to head east.

While that might not seem quite elaborate enough, this road trip rodeo is one with a purpose. Lloyd’s personal bike will be customized as a tribute to fallen police officers, a cause near to his heart. Our trip will include some stops at monuments, memorials, and assorted police departments along the way. And the National Law Enforcement Memorial and Museum of Washington, DC has committed to their involvement in the ride as well.
We are thinking we’ll ride 350-600 miles a day for six days, stopping at various key locations along the way for photos as opportunities arise. A trip like this will be the ultimate test of man, machine, and our friendship. I’m looking forward to putting the Indian of Charlotte Signature Series bikes through their paces. Can a supercharged, big cubic-inch V-twin really do the trick for a long-distance, rally-bound ride? I don’t know. But we’ll all find out. I’m looking forward to getting some bike review material, tour story fodder, and even a police tribute story for the next issue of American Iron Salute (due in Autumn of 2019).

You should be able to monitor our progress, Wi-Fi-willing, along the way. We plan social media posts, blogs, and podcasts during the trip. In early March you can follow our Facebook and Instagram posts at American Iron Mag, Indian Motorcycle of Charlotte, and Lloyd’z Motor Workz.

There are so many potential office pools you could generate with this: Will we make it? Will we break down (physically, mentally)? Will Lloyd strangle me or throw me off a cliff? Will we be visiting police departments through the guest entranceway—or via paddy wagon? Once the trip is done, I plan to cover Daytona like a blanket, but about mid-week I’ll need to head for home quick for an important life-changing personal engagement. Let’s see, there’s still a little time before we depart, plenty of time to throw a curveball at the plans.