~Since 2004~
A site about memories, thoughts, photos, and unrepentant opinions about motorcycles and motorcycling after four decades of twisting the throttle.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

1951 Was A Very Good Year

For me 1951 was a banner year. To be specific, January 22nd of that year was significant for me.  Today is January 22, 2011, and by some odd quirk of fate or an act of Divine mercy, I have reached my 60th birthday.

There were those who might have bet against me lasting this long and I would be one of them.  As a friend told me once, long ago, after we stopped for a break during a brisk ride through canyon roads north of Los Angeles "I thought you were dead at least three times back here."  What I often lacked in caution I made up for with luck or a fleet of guardian angels.

Now, consider for a moment this lovely 1951 Harley Hydra-Glide:
Image link

"SLEEK, smooth and beautiful. And what a performer. Takes off like a scared rabbit. Snuggles to the road like a clinging vine. Breezes over hills like a bird. Whisks you over rough spots with cloud-like ease … brings you thrill after thrill as you take in exciting race meets, hillclimbs, gypsy tours, sightseeing runs and other exclusive motorcycling fun events. You’ve never really been places and seen things until you’ve ridden this dazzler! Every moment in the saddle is fascinating. Every trip brings new adventures and new companionships."

And if it was true about the old '51 Harley, it was and remains just as true about me.  Trust me.

Anyway, I have to go. I'll be up early to ride down to the coffee shop to get the senior citizen special for breakfast and tonight it's home to watch either "Wheel of Fortune" or the Isle of Man TT races.  You guess.


Nick said...

Happy Birthday 40on2 :)

Mike Werner said...

Happy birthday. That's a respectable age. Life now only begins...

D. Brent Miller said...

Happy birthday, Doug. If I were there, I'd be taking you out to breakfast at the Hangar Cafe in Gilbert. We would ride there on our bikes. We would ride like the wind ...

Well ... it's the thought that counts. --Brent

Gymi said...

Have a happy Birthday Doug, here's to many more. Don't forget, you'll have to go to those all you can eat buffets from this point forward.

Geoff James said...

Well hearty congratulations Doug! Hope that you're going to celebrate big time.

Don't forget that it's all about attitude - age is irrelevant. Just age disgracefully!!

Best wishes,


Roger said...

I hope, and intend to be aaround as long as you! I am sure ou have some great stories to tell....so start tellingthem.

Canajun said...

Happy birthday Doug.

Love the text for that old Harley ad - especially from the perspective of 60 years later where we can only imagine what "snuggl{ing} to the road like a clinging vine" really felt like as the front end wandered all over the place, your hands were vibrating off the bars, and your girl had that "Oh my" look on her face, accentuated by every big thump of that solid-mount engine.

Good times indeed.

Anonymous said...

Wheel of Fortune... ;-)


Drifter said...

Happy Birthday Doug!

Doug Klassen said...

Thanks for the well wishes, guys. I paid my mom a visit and took her out to lunch. She's now closing in on 90 years old now and tells me I'm as lovable as ever.

Greybeard said...

Hope your day was a good one filled with smiles.
Now the important question-
How's it feel to suddenly be a Capricorn?
(My Birthday is today, the 25th.)

Unknown said...


a belated Birthday Greeting from British Columbia

Wet Coast Scootin

Nigel Cox - Tickhill UK said...

Yep - belated happy birthday from me too over in the UK.


GF said...

Happy Birthday!!!! wow, I just turned 50 on the 10th of January. Lets all hope we at least get to your moms age, I would be really happy ;-)
"Wheel of Fortune"?? ha ha, I'm sure it was the TT ;-)

Popular Posts

Search This Site

"When my mood gets too hot and I find myself wandering beyond control I pull out my motor-bike and hurl it top-speed through these unfit roads for hour after hour." - T.E. Lawrence

An Important reminder from the past:
"I believe there are more instances of the abridgment of the freedom of the people by gradual and silent encroachments by those in power than by violent and sudden usurpations." - James Madison