An Interview with Jerry Gonzales Gomez Salzburg
by Crash Casey
Jerry is an old bro of mine. For whatever reason he wants to remain undercover, so we’ll call him Jerry Gonzales Gomez Salzburg. Picture, if you will, the biggest man you’ve ever seen. Adorn him in a huge sombrero and a poncho big enough to cover a banquet table. Arm him with a Corona in each hand and one in each of his two holsters. This isn’t exactly what Jerry looks like, but it’s close enough.
M.M.M.: How many years have you been riding bikes?
J.G.G.S.: Well, since I was a teenager. How’s that? [Read thirty years.] My first bike run was when I was sixteen, with a bunch of guys that all had Triumphs and Japanese bikes. That’s what we rode back then. Up to Duluth with ten cases of beer, that trip would take us about sixteen hours.
How many bikes have you had, and what were they?
Besides that first Japanese bike, I went with Harley-Davidson–one of the most expensive mistakes I’ve ever made. But it’s in my blood, and I can’t change. Harley sells you the basics, and you go from there. In 1979 I bought a brand new one. I had used before that. For a while I traded every year.
What are you currently riding?
A 1990 FLHS, but I’ve got a new one that should be here in ’99. On my current bike I’ve got over six figures for miles.
Do you value sixty-nine most as a numerical value or as a verb?
The number sixty-nine? Ask me that again. Wow, what a curve. I know what it means. Yes, I value it. I’ll tell you that much. What kind of man wouldn’t?
What kind of riding do you do now: cruising or touring?
If I’m just going a few miles to the local tavern, I’ll take the car. Used to be after work I’d run out a tank of gas, but now with these big tanks… It should be a hundred miles before I’ll pull it out of the garage.
What are some of the tours you’ve taken?
Well, as far east as you can go, Nova Scotia and Maine. Never go out east if you can help it. Those people out there are weird! The West Coast, the Rockies, of course. Never been to Texas–my next big trip, since I have connections all over Mexico. I’ll truck down to Texas and ride on south of the border. I’m going to see what our fifty-first state looks like. I’ve been to Sturgis every year for a long time. My first year I welded up a ’65 panhead hardtail, and it took me three days to get there. Now I do it in ten hours or so.
What’s your most memorable ride?
What with all my bros and all the miles and all the parties, it’s hard to say. Any time I got lucky, I guess.
What is your favorite day ride?
My favorites are all on Mondays. I used to call them “Bikin’ Mondays,” ’cause everyone is at work and you have the roads to yourself. I love all the roads around the St. Croix Valley. If I had to choose one I would say 21 out of Afton to the east side of Prescott, then 10 to Maiden Rock and AA to Baldwin.
What do you think is the biggest issue facing bikers today?
On July 31, as I understand it, there will be a law in effect that states that bikers can’t be discriminated against. Well, last Sunday I was out at a tavern, and there was a guy there who was wearing club colors. The owner got into it with him right away. The owner said he’d serve whomever he pleased. Who knows what will happen?
Come you readers, give me a call or something! Tell me who you are and where you like to ride. I’m going to run out of friends soon. Call me at 750-5988, e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org or write me at the paper. I’d love to get to know you.
Oops! There are two corrections from last month’s column: Doug’s last name is spelled Schultz, and his phone number is 612-424-9609.