Post Mortem: Kawasaki Demo Day

Had a blast at the Kawasaki Demo Day yesterday. The crowd was pretty full because the weather was poor on Saturday. Kawasaki had about thirty bikes there to demo. I signed up for the Versys and the KLR 650 since I am currently most interested in a dual sport at the moment. I wanted to get a ride on the Contours, but it was booked up until the late afternoon and I didn't want to wait that long to ride it. The day was already long enough as it was. 

The demo ride was about 20-25 minutes long and first up was the Versys. After the ride I have to say I enjoyed it a lot. It has a very standard seating position and a sporty overall feel. Ergonomics were great on it, but I can't say I was a huge fan of the instrument panel. Personally I think the dual speedo/tach is the most perfect of designs since everything can be very easily read at a glance. The Versys however had an analog tach with a digital speedo. I am not sure if it was just my newness to the bike or not, but I just couldn't make my mind click with it. Granted I only rode for 20 minutes. One other minor gripe was the positioning of the foot pegs. They were set so far forward that I had to put my feed on the ground behind them. All just a minor annoyance that has more to do with my personal habits more than anything else. Overall though I could see myself owning this bike. It is a perfect size for someone who is 5'8" like me and has the bones to do longer trips. 

The second ride of the day was on a KLR 650. Having demo'd the BMW F 800GS last fall I was prepared to try and handle a bike that was too tall for me. To my surprise however I was able to get both feet on the ground, although tip-toed. Everything about this bike surprised me quite a bit. It is only a single cylinder engine, but it had plenty of "git-up" in it. It won't be winning any speed races, but it cruised along about about 70 mph very easily and I was able to mostly hang with the other cruisers in the group ride. The bike setup was also a very standard riding position that was incredibly comfortable. The KLR is definitely more of a dual sport than the Versys and it showed in its suspension. It is a very tall bike that rides high. I can see how people take this thing across the country. The only minor gripe I had with it was that the turn signal indicator was a single light for both signals. There was one instance on the demo ride where we had to make a right and then left very quickly and I wasn't quite sure which way my blinker was going.  Overall though super appealing and I came away a little more interested in it than perhaps the Versys. 

With the riding position so upright on these bikes and both having fairly high suspensions hoping back onto my ZR-7 at the end of the day sort of felt like getting onto a toy cycle. Bike ZR-7 isn't small by any means, but it is comparatively small to a bunch of these other bikes. 


April 2012 Videogaming

This past month has been pretty crazy. Spring is here which means that outdoor and housework have come in full force, so I haven't had an opportunity to get a lot of gaming in. After completing Mass Effect 3, I found myself back in the world of Skyrim and I eventually got around to "beating" the game. Now I don't think anyone ever really beats an Eleder Scrolls game, but I can say that I completed the main story and then just continued to play. 

At this point I am basically just wadering the world, which seems to still be satisfying. I never really took to the previous Elder Scrolls games that much, but this one is sticking with me for some reason. 

A couple of a days ago I also started playing Splinter Cell Convication. I believe this game came out sometime last year. I never was into the Splinter Cell games before because I honestly don't have the patience for stealth games. This one started out frustratiing for me because at its core it is a stealth game. After spending a few days with it thoug, and learning the mechanics I am beginning to understand how it works. Can't say I am really enjoying it, but I am determined to finish it through to at least see how it plays out. 

April 2012 Reading List

For the past couple of months I have been working on a book called Born to Run: A Hidden Tribe, Superathletes, and the Greatest Race the World Has Never Seen. A co-worker lent it to me and said he learned a lot about running from it. I wouldn't exactly call myself a runner, but I am into fitness and gave it a try. 

I thought the book was going to be a chronicling of the author and his spiritual journey as he lived with this ancient Mexican tribe that was known for running. Unfortunately the book more focused on the concept of long distance running and how different people were doing it. Overall it wasn't the book for me, but there as a rather poignant moment when one of the main characters called Caballo Blanco was found dead just a few weeks ago.

I am still slowly working on The Books of Skyrim and I have also just started reading the Philip K. Dick Reader, which is a collection of short stories from none other, than Philip K. Dick. So far that is a good read so far.