My mom’s a photographer; when I was growing up in Austin, Texas (this was when my dad was hunting UFOs), I remember when she covered a national Frisbee competition. I usually get this stuff all wrong, but I have very distinct memories of lean Texans in bandannas hurling Frisbees over huge distances, and their lean Texan dogs (also in bandannas) leaping impossible distances into the air to catch them.
Austin was a cool city. There were many Frisbees and many dogs in bandannas. So my archetype of coolness, imprinted from childhood, is composed of equal parts dogs in bandannas, and motorcycle sidecars. Not sure how the sidecars got in there, except that they are obviously inextricably linked to dogs in bandannas. And Frisbees.
So now that I have a little baby, it’s time to start looking at sidecars and bandannas for her. Lydia won’t be ready for frisbees for a few years, and my commuting schedule rules out a dog, but that’s just a matter of time. A sidecar she and I can start on now. At the Turkey Pro a few weeks ago, one fellow Airheads Beemer Club member arrived on his sidecar rig named “Lucifer’s Taxi.” It’s a R100/7 — the same model as my bike — except with a sidecar rig, tricked out in desert tan and with some iron crosses and Airhead logos. The iron crosses aren’t my thing, but converting an R100/7 to a hack rig is VERY MUCH MY THING INDEED. Especially if you can strap all sorts of interesting things to the sidecar. Like a mount for the Commando Projector next summer. At which showing there will be frisbees. And dogs in bandannas, if I’m lucky.
I’m now trying to find sidecar rigs from the late seventies that will look good with the bike. I’ve seen some really cool stuff — like this Chinese BMW knockoff with a jump seat and some other outlandish stuff — but I’m pretty sure that it’s going to be your basic big, blocky, German Seitenwagen rig. Then, according to the best advice out there, I have to practice driving it for a couple of thousand miles before even considering carrying a passenger. Scroll to the bottom of this page, and you can see a Turkey Pro Slow Race contestant from 2001 doing what I’ve since learned is called “flying the sidecar.” Cooooool.