...it's 3.5 hours of sunlight on skin which has not had a chance to absorb much UV this year; so my face is red. If I had been thinking at all....
So that's on the list for tomorrow; I'm going to be applying sunblock, because damn.
Today's class was 3.5 hours of riding and 0.5 hour of classroom instruction.
I was assigned to a one-lung street-legal dirt bike, a Yamaha of some displacement I'm not aware (probably 250, though, as it's a class "M" bike). Although it's not really my ideal street bike I'd buy one like it in a heartbeat; it's got a nice soft suspension and plenty of power. It's louder than I'd like, but it could go anywhere and it'd be damn comfortable all the way.
They had--sitting off to the side--a Suzuki twin-cylinder bike, and it was fuel injected. One of the instructors was saying it was probably about a $3,000 bike brand new, and it's awful nice-looking to me.
That's not for me, though--not this year--unfortunately.
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Incidentally, I'm not the only person who was surprised that the course is actually 100% free. There were a couple others who were all O_O when they realized that the $20 fee was refunded and only there to keep people from jamming up the registration queue.
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The usual DOOM! thread. You know, right now the Dow is up a hundred-odd points over close yesterday. That doesn't mean the downward death spiral is complete; it just means some people are buying because they think it's gone as far down as it's going to.
They may be right; they may be wrong. I have no freakin' idea which it is; ask me tomorrow.
Market Ticker thinks they're wrong.
But this isn't the big one, not yet.
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It's a pity this plan is completely impossible, politically, because it's how things ought to be.
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So I went to class and had fun riding a motorcycle around in circles. The person in front of me was going too slow so it was hard for me to practice my "slow, look, push, roll" technique for making turns. I mean, when you're already going slow enough to make the turn, you don't exactly need to use your brakes, do you?
I have a couple tendencies which I'm going to have to train out of myself, at least long enough to pass the exam on Friday.
The first is that I control my speed with the throttle. "Wait, that's obvious," you say; but what I mean is that I will close the throttle and use engine braking to do much of the slowing down that needs doing. This is fine in a car; this is not fine on a motorcycle. Brake lights tell people you're slowing down, you see.
Second is my tendency to put in the clutch and coast. Also not-good.
...so I'm working on it, and though I was having some problems due to bad habits I still did not-bad today.
The bike I rode today is much more powerful than the one I'm used to, as it has nearly 3x the displacement. Also, it has hydraulic disk brakes in front, where my Suzuki has cable-actuated drum brakes. This thing will stop on a dime compared with my bike.
And it has a clutch that doesn't need replacing. Holy shit is that a night-and-day difference. The Suzuki's clutch is pretty badly worn; as noted some time in June it's right to the limit of adjustment now. I'm going to be doing a complete teardown of the engine this winter--if not sooner--to rebuild things like the clutch, fix whatever's wrong with the transmission (it's a bit flaky) and replace all the gaskets and seals so it doesn't leak gear oil the way it does now.
My brother thinks I ought to bore it out, at least for the power increase; I disagree. For one thing, going 0.030 over isn't going to result in that big of a power gain; but mainly I won't know what needs doing until I tear it apart and check the tolerances. I'd wager that finding the correct oversize piston and rings would be a bit of a project and cost a packet to boot. Hopefully I won't need to do that. But it all needs to be disassembled, cleaned, inspected, and miked for wear before I can formulate a plan on what I'll do about fixing it.
I'll clean the thing and make it all pretty again, of course.
...but that's later. Right now I want to get my license, and get the thing street legal, and ride a bit. Have some fun, you know.
That means doing some homework tonight and being there before 7:45 tomorrow--and tonight's Bible study. I have some busy times ahead of me, don't I?
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Man, the projected low tonight is 59°, and temps in the seventies for the rest of the week. Oh, I hope that forecast is accurate!
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Instead of doing anything with WoW last night, I watched anime; and after that I took a shower and went to bed. I think I was asleep before 1 AM, but I slept fitfully such that I was awake about an hour before I really needed to be. I got up at 6:45 and went off to school.
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Right now, I'm going to take a nap for a couple hours. I'm beat.