“I beheld the wretch — the miserable monster whom I had created”–Frankenstein, Mary Shelley
Earlier this year, I bought the ugliest motorcycle in the world. So ugly, in fact, that I never even bothered to take pictures of it or tell anyone except my girlfriend. She has since left me and I cannot say that having the ugliest motorcycle in the world did not contribute to that decision.
I brought the motorcycle to the Senate once and the engine died on me at least 10 times along the way. The engine cut off in the middle of Quezon Avenue one time and if I hadn’t pulled on the clutch lever to coast to the curb, I would have skidded, spilled, and died on that road. Perhaps embarrassed at its poor showing, the bike died later that night.
Attempts to fiddle with it ended in broken handlebar risers and the longest stream of curses in the history of the Filipino language. And that’s how the bike stayed for a couple of months.
I have been chipping away at it on weekends, though, and have gotten it running. It’s not pretty and it sounds like a cat in heat stuck in a cheap motorcycle engine, but getting the bike to run is already 90 percent (of 50 percent) of the problem, so hooray.
There is still a lot of work to be done, mostly gonzo repair work and modification but it’s a step forward, at least. I’ll work on removing rust and then touching up the paint, and then I’ll replace signal and brake lights and make a seat pan out of an old metal sign my father stole from some school years ago. Stripping away all of the cheap plastic panels, which I did within 5 minutes of bringing the motorcycle home, was just the beginning.
Still, though, considering the most progress I have had with another project bike–a ’69 Honda Super Sport 125–is painting everything matte black and thinking up names for it, this is a great success.