If you’ve noticed a slowdown on blog posts here on Bikewriter.com, it’s in part down to something I’ve been too embarrassed to admit until now: I was recently injured in a motorcycle crash. It was a shit crash (aren’t they all?) But now, I’m now asking for a little sympathy.
I suppose I could organize some sad Go Fund Me to pay for treatment that I’m going to need to keep working. But I’d rather organize a “Go Find Me a gift I can give my motorcycle buddies”. What I mean is, buy your pals a good motorcycle book (or DVD), and give it to them as a Christmas gift (or, buy something for you to read over the Christmas break, while the rest of your family talks politics). That’s how you can help me out.
“That’s all I need to know! Just give me the links and I’ll buy some books right now.”
“What? You, Mr. Caution, were injured?!? Tell me more...”
Like all crashes, it was the result of a rider error. Yes, I was going much to fast for public roads, with friends but also with an eye towards writing a tire test on the buns on the Multi. I locked the front tire over-braking in an unexpected cornering situation. It was not particularly violent; I rode the bike home 200 miles from Arkansas, thinking that I’d sprained my right thumb and that the worst damage had been done to my ego.
Turns out that wasn’t the case. When the swelling and pain went on too long, I finally had it examined; it turns out it’s broken. And no, I’ve nothing like the kind of insurance you’d need to have it fixed in the U.S. (which, I suppose, influenced my post-crash wishful thinking that it was just some kind of sprain.)
Go ahead and berate me but don’t fucking kid yourself: No freelancer can afford meaningful health insurance. The only people who do what I do for a living, who also have good coverage are the handful of people who are still salaried employees, or journalists who happen to be married to someone with a corporate job.
Although I’ve been living with it for a month, in the last week I’ve had to face the fact that as piss-ant an injury as it is, it’s career-limiting for a motorcycle journalist. My typing and note-taking are messed up, and while I can technically ride, I won’t be able to ride well enough to take on most assignments until I get it fixed, whether in Mexico, Thailand, or wherever. Hence, this appeal.
If you’ve read this far AND YOU’RE A U.S. CUSTOMER congratulations, because this is where you get some great additional offers
I have a bunch of copies of One Man’s Island, Peter Riddihough’s great documentary film about my Isle of Man experiences. This is a DVD made in 2002, before the advent of high definition, but it’s still very watchable. I’ll sell you as many as you want for $15 each with free shipping. Shoot an email to Mark@MarkGardiner.com with your U.S. snail mail address. I will send you a Paypal invoice (and yes for you old-fashioned types I do still accept checks in the mail!)
I have a bunch of copies of Mastery of Speed: BMW Racing Motorcycles, co-authored with Laurel Allen. Although it was written before the S1000RR era, it’s full of terrific pics from BMW’s own archives and a great gift for BMW nerds! Again, $15 each with free shipping – less than half the Amazon price (so don’t tell them!) Shoot an email to Mark@MarkGardiner.com with your U.S. snail mail address. I will send you a Paypal invoice (and yes for you old-fashioned types I do still accept checks in the mail!)
Please note: Because I will be mailing these myself, and because the USPS has jacked up international rates and made the paperwork for international mailing incredibly onerous, I can only send these to U.S. addresses.
And now for the best part: Win an incredible art calendar of nude photos shot on the TT course!
My friend Rachael Clegg is a mad TT fan who is also both beautiful and talented. If you’ve never seen her ‘Milestones’ calendars you are in for a treat. Each month is illustrated with a funny or charming nude self-portrait, all shot on the TT course. NSFW, but SFYDOG (suitable for your den or garage.)
Six U.S. customers who buy books between now and December 1 will win one of these calendars. Here’s how to enter:
1. Buy a book or books and screenshot your receipt or confirmation
2. Email that proof of purchase to me, at Mark@MarkGardiner.com with ‘Calendar Contest’ in the subject line
3. On December 2 I will sort through and give calendars to the three people who make the biggest purchases, and three other people chosen at random.
Please note that, again, because of USPS shipping hassles, this offer is for U.S. readers only. Sorry!
Last but not least… If you are a motorcyclist who happens to be an accomplished hand surgeon, we should talk.
No wait, there is one more thing: If you were expecting a maudlin Thanksgiving post, read this one…