You might be wondering why I didn’t I mention going for a motorcycle ride instead of singing songs with the radio? Well, that’s because as I’m writing these words my motorcycle isn’t running. I worked on the fucking thing all day – a blown (as in burnt) regulator, and a stator replacement to boot. No quick fix. Oh, I forgot to mention this: my bike caught fire! Yeah, coming home 10:30 p.m. my bike starts smoking at the stop light, and I don’t mean I was burning rubber. I was burning electrical insulation. I was three blocks from home. I went through the red light, and made for home like a bat outta hell! On the way back my bike shut off and turned on again – I mean everything shut off – motor, lights – all of it.
When I arrived home, I shut off the bike. That’s when I saw the threatening sight of an orange flame start up. I should have grabbed some baking soda from the house, but seconds counted before my bike would be up in flames. So, I grabbed the front hose, and doused the shit out of the flame down by the regulator. Got the fire out, but man I was scared shitless.
I knew something was wrong, but I wouldn’t be able to get to it until I had daylight. Well, later over the next few days, and after the clean up of the bike from the smoke and water, I found out the problem; there was a regulator wire that goes to the stator that had become loose from it’s connection inside the inside of the regulator, which you know is non-serviceable, and was shorting against the metal regulator frame. It got hot enough to heat oil which had been leaking out of an after market super duper oil cooler (don’t ever do this), and well, FIRE!
The smell of the burned out regulator was very strong – that burnt electrical smell of wire insulation, and oil that’s so strong that if you get any burnt residue on your skin, your skin smells like burnt electrical material. Not fun!
I don’t mean to bore the fuck out of any of you who don’t know what I’m talking about, that’s OK. What’s important is not what happened to me. It’s WHAT I DID about it that’s important. I could have done a lot of negative things like I did in the past you know, get fucked up, have a shitty night, beat myself up. I mean I was stuck, and I couldn’t do anything about my bike, and I know there was no quick fix. All I could do is not to let my emotions get controlled by the circumstances. Yeah, they sucked, and if you love your ride like I do you can understand why I was so bummed (depressed). It’s like the old saying,”This maybe mean nothing to you, but it means everything to me!” couldn’t be more true.
So, yeah, I put on some tunes and I start singing while on my way to get a cup of coffee, and then dinner. In other words, I took a break from the situation. I literally got in my car, and escaped through the road and music. I had no guarantee that it was going to work. I had no idea when this awful depression was going to leave, or when I would start feeling better. I just knew I had to do something to interrupt the negative, extremely low feeling I was experiencing – and it helped.
Did one of the solutions I offered in a previous blog – i.e. singing along with the songs on my car radio – fix my bike? No. In fact, it’s going to take several hundred dollars in parts to fix it, not to mention the time it will take in labor to install the parts. To have Harley Davidson do it is simply out of the question due to the high cost of labor. days ago because when I get down, I can stay there for a while – not as long as I used to though. And “Yes”, even that night that I got in the cage (car), turned on the stereo and went cruising singing as I drove, it helped. That’s why I’m passing it along. It might work for you. Try it. Won’t cost you anything.
There are some good reasons why a tactic like this can work. One of them is that when you do something different to get your thoughts headed in a different direction, like singing and getting out of the house, and driving. When you do this you are interrupting the thought patterns and the neurons that are firing in sync with your negative thoughts.
This technique in essence starts to fire in sync with your positive thoughts. I’m no psych, but I’ve read up on some of this stuff and there appears to be something to it. When you are thinking happy (positive) thoughts, it’s impossible to be depressed at the same time. I know you might be saying, “Bullshit”, but keep up the happy thoughts long enough for a change to occur, and you WILL FEEL BETTER!
How simple this solution was to get me to feel better even though the problem, i.e. the bike being down, was still there when I got back from my “happy sing along ride.”
The is one of many tactics I use to pull myself out of the dumps, so I hope you give it a try. I’m not saying your life will be all sunny and easy after doing it, but your world might not look as dark, or feel as hopeless and sad. I think that’s why the blues was invented – to express sadness, that dirty lowdown feeling that your life ain’t shit!
Born under a bad sign, been down since I began to crawl
If it wasn’t for bad luck, I wouldn’t have no luck at all – Albert King, 1967
I don’t know about you, but when I get into this song and sing my heart out, I feel better! With lyrics like these you’d think it would make you feel worse. But, I don’t. What about you? What songs could you sing that would make your world feel better?
Glenn “Grey Wolf” Jones.