Dear Ma, I hope everything is good up there in Heaven. Things are kinda good down here in Dallas. I am so glad that 2016 is over and I am praying that 2017 will be a better year. To say that our industry faced some challenges in 2016 would be an understatement.
It seems that election years are always slower, and this election year was ugly. I am hoping that the motorcycle industry can get back to where it was before the economy went south eight years ago. We have suffered enough and now that the election is over I would like to have my life back, please! Maybe if you see God you might mention that to him. I talk to him every night and I will continue to do so in 2017.
Big news Ma, my RF Custom Octane (Evil Ethel) won the Victory “Operation Octane” contest! Ethel is the North American Champion and I am pretty dang proud! There were lots of cool Octane’s built by other Victory dealers throughout the world. Evil Ethel is a different style than some people may necessarily know me for.
Here’s the analogy I like to use: Say Ethel is a pretty girl with a shapely figure wearing pretty clothes that are colorful. Her hair is beautiful, her makeup is impeccable and she has a beautiful smile. That’s Ethel. Now we take Ethel and dress her in some darker, raggedy clothes. She is not wearing any makeup and her hair is a mess.
When she smiles one of her front teeth is knocked out…that’s EVIL ETHEL, a streetwise, tough broad who’s been around the block a few times! We build all kinds of bikes here at Strokers Dallas, and I have a company called RF Custom Parts that only makes parts for Victory Motorcycles, although we are adding some Indian parts soon. Many of the custom parts on Ethel are sold through RF Custom Parts. It’s a great company and we are really manufacturing some cool custom parts for these Victory bikes.
Ma, it seems like the older I get the more my life is just about Strokers and my other businesses. I don’t think that is a good thing, but it’s happening, and the older I get, the worse (or better) it’s getting. I am totally consumed by the motorcycle business and everything else is secondary.
I’m working insane hours and have been for many, many years now. Sixteen hours a day, every day, seven days a week with never a day off for my personal life. Ma, that’s nuts and I don’t know how to change this lunacy. I’m happy with my business, I just wish I could step back and enjoy some time off but I just can’t bring myself to do it. I know that I’m an absolute idiot, but what can I do? I guess it’s a dang good thing that I love my business so much otherwise I’d be in the nut house.
We have lots of cool bikes that we are building right now and you know that’s my favorite part of the business. I love the creative process and every bike is different. I am lucky to be working with some really good people who also love this crazy business! I guess that’s all the news from here at Strokers Dallas Ma. I have a special meeting in a few minutes with a beautiful woman, three old English Sheep dogs and some fried chicken! Gotta go!
Love ya Ma!