Everything Changes. Nothing remains the same for long. These connected rules apply to every aspect of life, including our passions and what we do as well as how and why we do things.
Two weeks ago I encountered this evolutionary process in clear display while riding to Washington DC to take part in the Rolling Thunder Memorial Day events. I was riding across U.S. 30 in eastern Ohio. The current route 30 is now a divided four lane limited access highway. This new expressway replaced old US 30 recently. Old 30 being mostly a two lane federal highway, though parts of it were four lanes. Old 30 itself had replaced the 1928 version of the Lincoln Highway. which had replaced the 1918 version of the LH, which had replaced the original 1913 version. What is remarkable is that the last three versions of this road across American had completely different roadways. It wasn't simply upgrades to the same road, it was the building of completely new parallel roads for the most part because the 'old technology' was so out of date that it couldn't be simply updated, it had to be totally replaced.
Today it is hard to find remnants of the original 1913 Lincoln Highway as originally conceived and laid out by Carl Fisher, an Indianapolis automotive entrepreneur who knew that the future of the budding automotive industry a century ago depended on the construction of roads more than on the construction of more automotive factories. Kind of along the same theory that without cell towers, cell phones are pretty worthless.
As I was riding in the cold wind and under dark scudding clouds just barely off the deck, I saw a motorcyclist along the side of the road up ahead. Now I still believe and generally follow a cardinal rule of motorcycling learned in the 1960s and 1970s - that is, if you see a biker on the side of the road, you pull over to offer your help in whatever manner you can.
So I pulled in behind the lone rider, who was kneeling beside his vintage 1975 Suzuki, cussing loudly while trying to get to the bottom of the mystery of why it kept shutting off on him every few miles. I was of no help in finding the problem but after a bit he got it running again. I told him I'd ride along with him in the event it quit again. I did, and it did. But the next time it quit he'd had enough. He pulled out his cell phone and called a friend. Once it was clear that he had made contact with his rescuer with a truck and trailer, I wished him the best and was on my way. In reality, there was really no reason for me to have stopped. Like almost every other person in North America he had a cell phone on him and he was in range of one of the thousands of cell towers that dot the countryside. He didn't need me nor my ancient code of motorcyclist honor.
Reality of the changing world that we live in really struck me then and there. The road I was on had evolved from a muddy trail carrying horses and a few ancient undependable cars to a multi-lane expressway carrying tens of thousands of modern cars and huge trucks on its concrete surface every day. My 2008 model motorcycle was vastly improved in every possible way to the nearly forty year old Suzuki (which was a marvel in its day - I remember!). And the ability to communicate has changed from helping out by running up to the next gas station with a pay phone and making a call for the stranded rider, to his simply pulling out a smartphone that has more capability than the most powerful computers of the 1970s. And I could probably ride for many miles before finding a pay phone that worked today! It all makes a code of honor to help someone in need almost unnecessary any longer. Over the last 10 or 15 years every time I've pulled over it was unnecessary. Twice it turned out to be state troopers parked off the highway tracking speeders with a radar gun - which I didn't see until I was right up to them - and they weren't pleased to see me pull up to them, I'm sure they thought I was some wise ass trying to cause them trouble.
Anyway - this is all going somewhere. Like dirt roads, and contact points and distributor caps, blogs are kind of old technology. I think it's time to move on. Time to park this 2005 model that just isn't sexy and shiny any more and is beginning to show its age and faded glory by the technology being ignored by most Internet users, and time to move on to something just a couple years newer - a facebook page that is based on my various books and my related travel and book event activities. The URL for the page is: https://www.facebook.com/BooksByBillMurphy?ref=stream&filter=1 called the Motorcycling Books & Travel page.
It is on this page that I now intend to start making more frequent, though much shorter, entries and updates. These entries will be about a range of topics, from trips and status updates, to items about book selling events & personal appearances.
Please follow me on this Facebook page, and for the folks who I know from various contacts who have been reading this blog - thank you!
Ride Safely & Live Fully (and stay thirsty, my friends).