Archive for June, 2009
Here she is. I made the deal with Freehold Triumph in New Jersey.
The New Adventures of My Bonnie are coming soon.
My beautiful Bonnie was declared TOTALED by my insurance company.
Here’s the story.
I rounded the corner of my block on the Friday afternoon which began the Memorial Day weekend and saw that my bike was not where I had parked it. It’s one of those moments where you know what you’re seeing but it just doesn’t register. I walked to the spot. Could it have been towed? You know it’s bad when you hope the answer is YES. I looked up at the parking sign. It’s a legal spot. That’s when reality slaps me HARD. My bike has been stolen.
I dial 911. They ask me to stay at the scene until the police get there. I start canvasing the area. I find an older gentleman having lunch in his car. He tells me he saw a guy sitting on the bike about 40 minutes ago. He doesn’t speak English well but I understood that he saw this young guy with a backward black baseball cap sitting on the bike. Eventually a police car pulled up. I tell them the deal and that I had a witness. They asked if I could get him. So I run down the block to get the man who had headed back to work by then. He came back to the police car and starts to get grilled by these cops. I felt bad for this guy. He wanted to help me and these cops were treating him like shit. They weren’t treating me much better. They ask where the bike was parked. I point to the spot. They look up at me from the car which they had no intention of leaving and tell me it’s not their jurisdiction. Then they drive off. Here’s the rub. My street is a dividing line for 2 police precincts. They play ping pong with crime on my street. This guy stole my bike less than an hour ago and the cops just split. They told me another car will be coming from the other precinct. I wait. I wait a while. I see a police van coming. I try to wave him down. His window is open. I yell “hey, can you help me.” He keeps driving. WTF!!!
I keep waiting. Finally another police car rounds the corner, but they are from the precinct which patrols the other side of the street again. They tell me to call 911 again. I do. I am told a car is on the way. AN HOUR LATER, I call again. They insist a car in en route. Finally a car shows up from the precinct with jurisdiction over the North side of the street. I tell them my bike has been stolen. “Are you sure you parked it there?” I am trying so hard to stay cool. “YES, I am sure!” Then this Korean guy walks up and starts telling the cops that he is locked out, and can they help him, and THEY ENGAGE HIM IN CONVERSATION. I am desperately trying not to flip out. But inside I am crying mad. Eventually the police tell this man who is locked out there is nothing they can do for him. I am beginning to believe that’s a standard answer for our boys in blue. The officer tells me I have to fill out some paper work. He says, “There is supposed to be 3 sheets. I can only find 2.” I say, “Is it possible that someone decided to save paper and make a two sided copy?” Oh yeah” he replies. I fill out all the forms and he tells me to call the precinct the next day to get a case # and speak to a detective assigned to the case. With every passing minute my despair and hopelessness grows.
It was a long, sad, lonely night. The next day I call the police precinct. I tell the officer on the phone my situation and ask for a case #. He immediately responds, “Call back Tuesday.” TUESDAY!!! I say, “But I was told to call today to get a case # for my insurance company.” He yells back, “You want me to make up a number or do you want to call back Tuesday?” Just stick a fucking knife in my heart why don’t you. (No, I did not say that). I get a call later that afternoon. “This is Detective Onthecase calling about case number 123.” HUH? I am thinking, is that the made up number or the number which won’t be available until Tuesday? He just wants to confirm the report and says he will canvas the area later that day. GREAT! The NYPD could not have been more unpleasant.
Sunday morning the phone rings. It is a detective in NEW JERSEY. My Bonnie has been recovered but it has been in an accident and they can’t tell me it’s condition. They can only tell me the name of the company that towed her and that an arrest has been made.
That Tuesday afternoon I went to New Jersey to have a look for myself.
I know, she doesn’t look that bad. But it doesn’t take much for an insurance company to declare a bike totaled. If you think about all the parts with labor, it adds up. Plus the insurance company figures in how much they can get back at auction. So it’s official. I need a new bike.
I love my Bonnie. It hurts to say goodbye. But I have big plans. I intend to embark on another 10,000+ mile trip this summer through some brutal terrain. Thinking about riding through the desert on a rebuilt bike does cause me to have some reservations. So in my heart and mind I know I have to let her go.
I looked at the new Bonnie. I hate the changes they have made to the exhaust and the wheels.
That’s not my Bonnie. I realize there are advantages to tubeless tires, but I never had a problem with my tubes. And that exhaust! It doesn’t signify the Bonneville the way the torpedo pipes did. Fortunately Triumph didn’t mess with the T100. So that’s my goal. Initially I was going to go with the black Bonnie, but after talking to the guys in Freehold today I think I am going to stick with green. I am ready to move on!
Now that’s a Bonneville! Just looking at her brings a long lost smile back to my face. Soon baby!
I’d like to say thank you to the Union New Jersey Police Department. They treated me with respect and were forthcoming in answering all my questions honestly. I went to Union, NJ to talk to the detective on the case. He gave me a copy of the police report. It turns out the guy who stole my bike had just gotten out of Riker’s Island the day before. When they arrested him in the hospital he was read his rights. He told the arresting officer that he had just gotten out of jail and needed a ride home, so he took the bike. I later looked the guy up on Facebook. There he was with a backward black baseball cap with both his middle fingers extended. Fuck you too brother and enjoy your second round in prison.