So, back around 2000 or 2001 I had a pristine Honda CB550F. While searching the innerwebs for info on the bike I found the CB750 Mutilation Society, a bunch of fun loving, blue collar dudes out of Vegas that rode old Hondas and went to Mexico once a year to celebrate their radness. I loved baja and had a Honda, so I invited myself along and they were cool enough to let me hang with them. I'll never forget sitting down for tacos and beer with that crowd for the first time and the Pres. John, looking at my t-shirt, said "What the hell is that Obey shit?" I tried explaining the Shepard Fairey thing as best I could, but ultimately I probably failed.
I thought the whole Obey thing was funny, but funny in a well-executed way that some people got, and most didn't. (The Point.) As a child of the Cold War, I also dug the aesthetic of the Russian Deconstructivism thing. At the time, Obey was just starting as a clothing company and I was hooking up a guy there with BMX parts and he was flowing me t-shirts. Fast forward almost a decade and now artist Shepard Fairey is a household name as a result of his recent Obama portraits and years of his subversive propaganda campaigns. Criminal or Hero? Genius or evil genius? Lots has been published on the dude by authors way more educated than I, so I'll leave that judgment to them, but personally I think he rules.
Anyway, he was invited to this HD shindig last night in Santa Monica which showcased some of his work, among others. I didn't stand in line long enough to get inside the gallery, I just stood outside and soaked up free PBR and shot the shit with friends, but I wondered why we never saw Mr. Fairey. Come to find out, he got cuffed and stuffed this morning on his way out here. What an outlaw! Well, thanks for trying, Shep.
In other news, the only motorcycles actually ridden to the deal were a Triumph and a Honda by the Choppertown duo, which I thought was ironic. Scout, thanks for having us and keep up the good work, we know yours ain't exactly an easy job!
The marketing machine never stops. Ever. I would have loved to bring about 100 guys from the EDR to this thing. I think the West LA crowd would have dropped lattes and run for the Prius if a few dirty guys on old motorbikes showed up.
HD acknowledges the next generation... whether you want it or not. For the record, I dig the Iron 883 and hope the Factory listens to Scout and offers an Evo Sporty powertrain as a crate motor. Trying to change direction at a company this large has got to be a challenge to say the least. Cheaper, less decorated bikes is a great first step. Good luck, Scout.
At least someone rode to this thing. On a Honda and a Triumph...