® A Day in the Life: People

Being kind of quiet by nature, I can't really say I am a student of people, but perhaps in 40-plus years in powersports I've had unusual opportunity to observe types. I once had a customer, who was waiting just outside my workbay for me to finish his job, with his girlfriend get on the floor and start making out. Guess they couldn't wait. Another time a customer, unhappy with his bill, stood in the back of his pickup truck and cussed us all out for probably ten minutes straight. I've seen a new bike buyer drop the clutch on his machine, uncontrollably wheelie out to the street and slam into a parked car. Could have used more pre-sale prep, hmm? I've had customers who were famous musicians, actors, and other celebrities, magazine editors, and the like, most of whom have been great, not at all what I expected. I was standing next to a coworker when he had an insulin episode and collapsed onto the floor, sustaining some pretty significant injuries. As I recall, no one even knew he was a diabetic. He was a great guy to work with and he survived this mishap and continued working with us. Another colleague used to occasionalky suddenly shout out to no one in particular, "Not enough mayonaise!" And then there was the customer who kept wearing out rear tires, one per week. Two free replacement tires later we learmed he was doing hour-long burnouts in his garage, with the front wheel up aginst the wall. Full throttle. Not sure what his problem was. I had a service writer working for me once who took in a valve adjustment. In a box. And he had gone to a tech school. Motorcycle shop bosses are perhaps the most interesting of all. My first boss used to throw his lit cigarette into the shop used oil/bad gas drum just to get a rise out of us (always on a cold day, I later figured out). He also believed in revving the crap out of a newly assembled engine to "bed her in.". I had another boss who, when I was doing a wreck estimate, tried to convince me that motorcycles only ever get damaged on one side when they go down, and still another who was famous for taking in "tune-ups" that showed up in the back of a truck. Yup, people everywhere can be pretty interesting. But I suspect this is even more true in motorcycling!

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