by Michelle Moe
Have you ever run out of gas on your bike? Lost a saddlebag on the road? Would your garage or shed qualify as a used motorcycle parts store? Do you enjoy reading or talking about anything and everything related to motorcycles? Answer yes (or even maybe) to any of the above and you will find it more than worth your time to pick up a copy of 101 Road Tales by Clement Salvadori.
101 Road Tales is a compilation of articles Mr. Salvadori has written for Rider magazine over the last twenty years. There is a good balance of opinion, technical and adventure pieces. It is easy to relate to his anecdotes on his successful, and not so successful, forays into the world. Yes, I too suffer from rushing and not wanting to stop, the topic of “Take 10” (September, 1989). It was therapeutic to read in “The Rhythm of the Road,” (September, 1996), that Mr. Salvadori has also experienced that some days, “I am as one with the machine and the road,” while others leave you riding with no rhythm.
Several articles relate his adventures, both in the U.S. and abroad, as in “The Destination,” (April, 1993). Mr. Salvadori has traveled to locations I have been and some I have not even dreamed of going. I always enjoy reading about the rugged rider who can traverse a foreign land on a bike. I hope to have the opportunity some time.
I have to admit that my eyes glass over and my brain wanders when tire size or other technicalities are mentioned more than once per article. Not to worry, the next article absorbs me completely. That is the beauty of the content of this book, there is something for everyone in here. The author provides us with enough entertainment and good advice to make an excellent read for anyone, rider or not.
As Mr. Salvadori alerts us to in the introduction, this is not a novel. It is not the kind of book one would need to read from cover to cover. Each article is just a few pages long, so can be enjoyed when you only have a few moments to spare. I can usually get through an entire article before I hear, “MOM!” Not to mention it is a satisfying, first-class bathroom read.
The author’s witty, easy-going prose covers topics we can all relate to. Whether it is how to pack your bike, rider etiquette, or the pros and cons of any type of bike, he has experienced it and written about it. I sure hope to have the opportunity to bump into him in my travels, have a cup of coffee, and share some tales.
With 101 Road Tales, Clement Salvadori hopes to inspire us to read an article or two, think about them and then get on our bikes and ride. Done, done and done.
Three and one-half out of four cylinders.
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