June 2021….

June of 2021… out and about selling solar, like I’ve been doing since 2017…

Tampa Bay Solar is doing 700 panels on Dunedin City Hall and 450 panels on the Porsche dealership in Clearwater… in October of 2020 we did 1200 panels on Florida Aquarium:

We’re also selling plenty of residential solar deals, but things are still a tad slower than before the pandemic.

Masks are finally going away, over 50% of Americans are vaccinated. I started going back to my little church after i got my 2nd Pfizer… just last Sunday I did “the Lord’s Prayer” as a solo. I think it went well…. who knows?

Last month Ford rolled out the new fully electric F150 and it looks amazing! As a “Solar Nerd” I’m super excited about all the new electric car offerings from all the large and well established car companies like Toyota, VW, Ford, Hyundai, GM…

I’ve sold both my motorcycles… including the 186mph “death machine” Kawasaki ZX-14R. I guess I can now freely admit that I took that machine up to 170 mph many times… it was so fast that 130 mph started to feel downright pokey!

My knee injury from the accident in January has no been mitigated by surgery… I’m back to doing stuff again, like rollerblading, building houses with Habitat… all that great stuff.

Motorcycles were a part of my life from age 21 until age 46… but I nice Sunday ride is not worth all the hassle I went through (and cost) to get my darn knee fixed!

That’s all I got for now….

Ben Alexander

June 2021

Full Yoshimura on my ZX.

In October I bought a 2017 Kawasaki ZX-14R. It had huge stock mufflers. See below:

They weighed at least 20 pounds each, and looked stupid. The new Yoshimura slip-ons look better, more balanced, and sound better as well.

It took about an hour to take the old pipes off and install the double Yoshimura mufflers.

I bought my first motorcycle back in 1995 in Taipei for $600.

The new Yoshi’s cost more than that…. I’m gonna keep my Kawasaki for a long time, this is easily the most advanced (and fastest) machine I’ve ever owned.

I still have the stock mufflers, don’t know what to do with them.

Sell to the metal salvage yard?

Ben Alexander

November 2020

August 23… the ‘Rona and other stuff.

SUNDAY : August 23, 2020

I spent the last few days hanging out with my girlfriend and her kids, but I needed to mow my lawn and take care of some other chores at my house so I came home, mowed my lawn and then rode my Harley down to Ybor city for lunch. Ybor City is the oldest part of Tampa, with several restaurants and bars. Lotsa motorcycle folks hang out in Ybor, so you can always see cool bikes down there.

My Harley is a 2013 Vrod model, 1250cc engine, about 670 pounds. I’ve been riding it all over, but on the highway above 80 mph this motorcycle is too windy. The Harley is more fun on country roads, just cruising along at 60 mph and taking it easy. I bought it used this past Spring, and I don’t regret the purchase. My other bike is a 2014 Honda CB1000r.

Florida is a Covid19 hotspot, but I don’t know anyone here who got sick. I have friends and family up in New Jersey, some of them got symptoms… but I think most Floridians are not as worried about the pandemic as folks in the Northeast. I’m wearing a mask when I’m out and about anyway, until a safe vaccine hits the market.

A bee hit my neck and stung me, but I pulled the stinger out and the pain went away. One of the many hazards that come with going too fast on 2 wheels, I guess. This has never happened to me in 25 years of riding!

Today I was feeling grateful for a bunch of things; thankful that I have love in my life as a 46 year old (non-married) guy, thankful that my finances were not destroyed by the last few months, thankful that my weight is down to 180 lbs, thankful that I haven’t gotten Covid19 (that I know of).

I’m thankful to have a house, and a lawn to mow, even if I sweat my guts out when I’m out mowing it.

My youngest daughter (20 years old) is not living in Pittsburgh year round… and my oldest daughter (22) still lives with me. She’ll be finished her business degree the end of this year… so i might be alone in this 4 bedroom house by this time next year….

I really love my girlfriend, and I love her children… we’ve been dating on and off since the beginning of 2019. She’s not sure about me sometimes. She’s probably right.

I’m not afraid of commitment, I ask her to marry me all the time, but she keeps turning me down. Yesterday I was at her house and her daughter put her foot on my forehead.

I love having a 4 year old in my live, that kid is almost as wacky as me.

This is my life, in a pandemic, in August of 2020.

Ben Alexander

Been a LONG time…

I haven’t written NADA in a few months because many things have happened, some good, some bad….

I dated Winni for 2 years until (just after) Christmas 2020, and then we broke up.

Correction: she broke up with me.

I asked Winni to marry me about 1,000 times but she never felt the same about me, for lotsa reasons.

This pic kinda says it all:

I’m grateful to to have shared 2 years of love and laughter with Winni and her children, we had a lot of warm memories together, from family dinners, to trips we took, to waking up in the morning with an invading Olive jumping on the bed full of energy and ready to go.

I was teaching her oldest son Dillon how to drive, and he was doing a good job. Dill is an artistic kid who is fascinated by drones and robotics and anything high tech. He’s in the Marching Band at his high school and plays sax, guitar and piano.

We visited my daughter Grace in Pittsburgh this past summer… she was socially distancing from us!

In the last year Winni’s 2nd son Roman shot up like a weed. Once he hit his 13th birthday he started to suddenly transform from a shy little kid to a shy teenager. Over the last year Roman and I joined TreeHoppers (a ziplining park in Dade City) and we went there many times over the past year.

Roman was always such a quiet kid…. but the gears never stopped spinning in his head, I just wish he would have shared his internal dialogue with the rest of the world, or with me, or with Winni.

(Roman and Olive)

I used to joke that Roman was secretly plotting the overthrow of the world.

Winni’s late husband was a gifted engineer at Boeing, and mixing his genes with Winni’s artistic streak resulted in three brilliant and talented children.

Both boys went back to in-person learning at the end of 2020, I think the isolation of online school was rough for both of them, even though Dill and Roman are quiet by nature I’m glad they are back with friends in school.

My personality is loud and extroverted, kinda the polar opposite of Winni’s sons. I never shared congruent interests with her boys, so it was harder to connect with them, to my lasting regret.

I care about both boys… they went through some tough times, and I hope they know I’m here for them if they need anything.

I’m a child at heart, so connecting with Winni’s daughter Olive was pretty easy… we just got silly together. Being around Olive felt exactly like being around my girls when they were little.

Many times Winni’s boys would rather stay home so Winni, Olive and I had many adventures together.

The Three Musketeers :::::::::::::::::::::::::::::

Olive brought out the best side of me, and I’m sad that she won’t be in my life (on a daily basis) moving forward. I wanted to be there as she grew up… I met Olive when she was 2, and she’s 5 years old now… I hope she has a ton of warm memories of our time together.

Winni’s family could use a Dad, and I was more than willing to step into that role… but that decision ultimately rests with Winni herself.

People move in and out of our lives, and sometimes the reason for this is not obvious until long after the relationship has ended. All that we can do is fully love someone, and if our partner chooses to NOT accept that love what can ya do?

Nothing, just do your best and move on.

I always liked the energy in this picture… lotsa love here.

&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&

In December my oldest daughter Claire finished her BA degree at USF. She’s still living with me and building up her savings. My house would feel empty without Claire and Ms. Lemons, so I hope Claire stays with me for as long as she wants.

Don’t tell her that!

BTW, Ms. Lemons is our little black cat. Claire calls her “my daughter”.

Claire is working full time and took a (non-paid) internship to build up her business experience.

My youngest daughter Grace is still finishing her degree at Carnegie Mellon in Pittsburgh.

Grace on the left, Claire on the right… my girls gotta lotta pretty from their Mother, indeed.

Being the father of 2 adult women is very different from when they were little girls. My job as a parent is to successfully launch my girls into the adult world, and we’re 99% there.

I’m proud to say that both my girls will graduate college with zero college debt.

Most importantly, my daughters are very kind, they work hard, and they have great survival skills!

I don’t worry about Claire and Grace they’re going to go out in the big wide world and crush it.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

January I was riding my Harley on a beautiful Sunday afternoon when an SUV swerved in front of me.

I locked up the front brakes on the motorcycle, it started to fishtail and my Harley went over the grass median at 40mph. At some point I put my left leg down to steady the bike and totally wrecked my knee.

DID NOT crash my 670 pound Harley, but DID crash my knee, dammit.

Had knee surgery a month ago, just before my 47th birthday.

Hooray! I’m walking without crutches now, but the last 8 weeks have really sucked.

Sold the cursed Harley, got same $$ for it that I bought it for.

I still have to sell my Kawasaki ZX-14R.

Wanna buy a crotch rocket that goes 186mph?

$10,000 and you can have it.

#######################################

LAST MONTH I celebrated my FOUR year anniversary in the solar biz…. by selling a ton of solar, on crutches!

With 450+ clients I have a BIG base of happy customers who send me to friends and family. I started handing out $300 CASH to any client who gives me a name and cell # that results in a sale, and that strategy is working out REALLY well.

When trust is SKY HIGH the transaction is smooth and easy.

Part of our success has to do with the high quality and diligence of Tampa Bay Solar. We recently completed 1200 panels on the roof of Florida Aquarium… these big jobs only lead to MORE big jobs!

The Tampa area is flooded with questionable solar “marketing” companies with zero to little install experience.

Tampa Bay Solar has been around since 2010, so we’ve established a great track record… and we’re still the sole “Veteran Owned and Operated” solar company in this market.

We’re doing 627 panels on the Sarasota courthouse in the next few weeks. Yahtzee!

Tampa Bay Solar is building a new HQ in east Tampa that will TRIPLE our install capability. This means that I gotta increase my sales team to match that growth… our current team speaks over 10 different languages, and we’re just getting started.

Tampa Bay Solar’s new building will be 100% off-grid with a large solar array and battery storage.

Screw you, TECO!

++++++++++++

It’s been a year since Covid19 started killing people all over the world… 2 weeks ago my parents got their 2nd vaccine and I got my shot as well. I went over to see my parents and gave Mom a big hug. Thank GOD they made it through OK. I’m still wearing a mask, of course. Many of our clients are older than me, and I’m shocked by the number of people who refuse to get the vaccine…. Trump’s legacy perhaps?

I hope the un-vaccinated never get exposed to Covid19, and if they get it I hope they don’t get sick.

The sad truth is that some of the folks who “don’t believe” in the vaccine will get Covid19 and some of those folks will die 10 or 15 years before their time… robbing their children and grandchildren of those precious years.

I’m 47 now, without any major health issues, and I’m glad I got the vaccine because even a milder case of Covid19 can mess you up for weeks or months.

Not worth it, and the vaccine is free! I’ve had enough health delays in my life with this damn knee injury!

April is just around the corner… I’m going to Mom and Dad’s house for Easter dinner next Sunday…

I’m slowly but surely getting back to walking and moving around. My physical therapist is a young guy from Haiti named Woodley. He’s a very cool guy, with lotsa patience for my curmudgeonly nature.

%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%

I’m farting around in my yard today, trimming back stuff, getting rid of weeds, trying to make my little home look nice.

If you are reading this, wherever you are, I hope your family made it through this pandemic safe. I hope you go and get the vaccine today if you have not already done so.

Happy Spring y’all !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Ben Alexander

March 28th 2021

10 Signs you’ve Fully Descended into Motorcycle Madness !!!!

  1. You have scuff marks on the top of your boot from shifting on multiple motorcycles.

2. You have multiple motorcycle jackets, hanging in your closet in order from warm weather to cold weather. You also have multiple helmets, gloves, etc…

3. You have MORE than one motorcycle registered in your name. So you go out to ride one one bike, then come home and ride the other bike even when you know your low back is gonna pay the price for all this when you finally go to bed that night…..

4. Every time you open your garage and see your motorcycle it makes you happy, even if the day is rainy or you have stuff to do and you can’t suit up and go ride today…..

5. 130mph is no longer THAT fast…. not anymore…. So when you’re out on the highway and your ZX14R has 200hp and you are already going rilly rilly fast you still have another half twist to go on the throttle… and that extra power makes you very happy, at some primitive level.

2017 ZX-14R… lotsa YouTube clips about the ZX.

6. You have actually rescued an old motorcycle from a barn, then spent most of a frigid New Jersey winter cleaning off every molecule of rust… then you rode that bike for the next 15 years.. see picture. And now you wish you had just kept the damn antique because it would still be fun to ride, even though it was heavy and slow…..

1978 Honda Hawk.. rode this dinosaur until 2015.

7. You can watch YouTube clips about motorcycles for hours, and not even realize you just wasted 4 hours. Thank you, Yammie Noob, you tricky bastard. You now use phrases like Dank Nooner, Flash your ECU or Trail Braking you know what the hell they’re talking about.

8. You like riding all bikes, even a 250cc Yamaha starter bike that you sold to your girlfriend but you like to jump on it when she’s not looking and thrash the gearbox all the way up to 58mph…. check out those bitching pipes !!!!

9. When you’re driving on the highway in your car, and a crotch rocket passes you at 140mph you still can identify the make, model and engine size of the bike.

10. You have vivid dreams about evading the cops, and when you wake up and realize that did not actually happen you get pissed off because Damn that would make for a cool story…..

Happy December !!

Ben Alexander

Your ZERO day.

Bought this house in 2003 for $157K. Still live there, keeps my expenses down.

Do you know what your ZERO day is each month?

The ZERO DAY is a concept I’ve been teaching in my financial management class at my church. Most folks have never heard of this concept, but it is very simple.

This is the day each month that your after tax income covers your monthly costs. If your monthly expenses are $4,000 and your monthly income is $4,500 then your ZERO DAY is the 26th of the month.

If you earn $12,000 per month and still maintain $4,000 per month in expenses all your bills are paid by the 10th of each month. That’s a great financial position to be in!

If your ZERO DAY falls early in the month you’re in good shape, if it falls in the last few days of the month you’re headed for financial trouble.

Part of being financially secure is keeping your expenses modest, even while your income increases. I put a picture of my home on this post… I bought my place for $157,000 back in 2003. Even as my income went up I resisted the urge to get a more expensive home… I even doubled down and put solar on the roof of my home and an electric car in my driveway, which further lowered my monthly energy costs by $300!

My income in the solar biz can fluctuate month to month, but my ZERO DAY usually falls before the 10th of each month, if not sooner.

If you have no idea what day is your ZERO DAY sit down for 20 minutes and figure our your monthly household income after taxes, then look at your monthly expenses.

This month the solar business has been quiet, so my zero day fell on November 14th. In October all my expenses were met by October 6th! That was a good month, indeed.

When I have a high commission month I take that extra money and pay my mortgage down. That’s my last debt piece, and my goal was to pay off my home in 2020…. until Covid19 started to muck things up!

The best way to prepare for lean times is get your expenses down in good times. I drive a used Chevy Volt, don’t use credit cards at all… stayed in my small house with a minimal mortgage and low property taxes….

What is your ZERO DAY this month?

What would you like it to be next month?

Ben Alexander

November 23, 2020

A rainy Veteran’s Day…..

(my 2013 Harley VROD on the left, and Kawasaki ZX-14R on the right)

Happy Veteran’s day !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

As I write this hurricane Eta is blowing across Tampa Bay, and since I’d rather NOT ride on rainy roads my 2nd best option is to write about it…..

I bought a 2017 Kawasaki ZX-14R (The Green Machine) about a month ago, and I’ve been cautiously learning how to ride the damn thing.

The ZX has a 1441 cc engine, on a 600 pound frame…. with 200hp. An engine this large would work just fine in a 2000 pound economy car, so you can imagine how fast it moves a much lighter motorcycle.

I only had one good reason for buying the Green Machine; I wanted to know what it feels like to cruise at 130mph…. and then go MUCH faster with a twist of the throttle.

Mission accomplished.

My Harley pulls hard to 130mph…. then gearing and aerodynamics limit the bike past that point. The Green Machine is just getting warmed up at 130!!

You need a wind fairing to go really fast…. on the ZX the wind fairing splits the airflow starting at around 100mph, creating still air behind the windscreen. Riding that fast is very different than sitting in a car, you can feel turbulence wash behind 18 wheelers on the highway, and that turbulence pushes the bike around in the lane.

The ZX riding stance is slightly forward, my 46 year old back and wrists were sore if I was futzing around in traffic…. but once there was some open road…. low earth orbit, indeed!

I respect the 200hp ZX the same way I’d respect a fully loaded machine gun, there are times to to fire and times to refrain from firing. I’ve been learning my ZX in 20 to 40 mile runs; getting used to the controls, the weight of the bike, how the brakes respond, the throttle response, etc.

I got my first 1,000cc Honda back in 2018 and did the same thing. At that time I’d never owned anything that fast… some motorcycles are more advanced, and I took my time learning how to operate my 1,000cc Honda. In many ways these bikes are incremental, from the 1,000cc Honda to the 1250cc Harley VROD to the 1441cc ZX-14.

My first 2 wheeled moped had 50cc’s… and no working brakes. Ran from the cops on that one, I got away but the cops took the moped. Oh well.

The great thing about learning how to ride really fast bikes is that smaller and slower bikes are still fun…. a friend of mine bought this 250cc Yamaha from me…. I was over there the other day and rode it again for kicks…. super light, super slow, really easy to ride…..

All motorcycles are fun, but when you go heavier and faster they can also kill you in MORE ways.

We motorcycle nuts think about the inherent dangers in riding, your skill level has to be higher than your crazy level, and good riders ride on a regular basis to keep their skills sharp.

On that note… I wear gear and don’t touch alcohol before riding. What really keeps me alive is 25 years of riding experience, and having a pretty good sense for when someone is about to cut me off or pull out in my lane of travel.

Good thing about being my age is that one develops a finely honed set of defensive driving skills, which come in handy on 2 wheels or 4… I met a young kid (17 years old) who got in a dumb accident on his 600cc cycle, probably because he lacked all around driving experience.

New riders might live longer IF they got a few years of driving skills under their belt before jumping on a motorcycle. I was 21 when I got my first cycle in Taipei, Taiwan…. I had a whole bunch of (low speed) accidents on my 150cc San Yang !! God forbid if my first bike had been a 600cc crotch rocket…. I would have been tiny little bits all over a Taiwanese street!

The goal here is to ride until I’m 105. Don’t know if that will happen, but it would be cool to be the old grumpy guy at the crotch rocket meet up.

I wanna pull up on a really fast machine and everyone thinks I’m younger until I take off my helmet and they see my gray wizard beard.

Goals, right?

Thank you Veterans !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

November 11th, 2020

A Turning Point, November 2020.

Like many people I held my breath this past week, waiting for the election results to come in, hoping that we wouldn’t have 4 more years of incompetent chaos at the highest levels of our government.

I’m a shareholder at Tampa Bay Solar, so I’ll benefit financially from a Biden administration, especially if Biden’s team extends the federal tax credit on residential and commercial solar.

I understand why Christian folks voted Republican in 2016. The Right had the best shot at stacking the Supreme Court with conservative justices, which might overturn Roe v. Wade.

(I’m a Christian who also believes in science: evolution, genetics, geology, the Big Bang theory, etc.)

Any abortion is a tragedy, but in cases of rape or medical threat to the mother that issue gets really complicated. One thing that I don’t want to see is a return to back alley abortions, which certainly would happen if Roe v. Wade was reversed.

I get it when people voted for a “Washington Outsider” who was going to be a change agent for the better… let’s see what a creative entrepreneur does in position of leadership, Drain the Swamp, right?

If Trump had been a smarter billionaire; like Mark Cuban, Bill Gates, Michael Bloomberg, etc… he would have filled his cabinet with the best and the brightest and actually listened to them.

There were some highly qualified people around Trump in the beginning, but when the best and the brightest started to disagree with the “Stable Genius” they were fired in a humiliating fashion.

Here is a Wikipedia page listing all of the people catapulted out of the Trump White House:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Trump_administration_dismissals_and_resignations

Why would any professional even entertain the idea of working with a tyrant who will eventually destroy your reputation via Twitter?

Anthony Fauci (who turns 80 this December) was in his position before Trump was elected, and if Covid19 had not broken out he would have kept on quietly doing his life’s work at the NIH.

Fauci has an impressive background, he’s advised every President as far back as Ronald Reagan when HIV / AIDS began to spread across the United States in the early 1980’s.

At this juncture Fauci might be the last person with any level of competence in Trump’s circle…. and last week Trump said he was going to fire Fauci after the election!

I admire Fauci tremendously. He was 79 years old when Covid19 hit our shores, he could have given up and retired when Trump started to contradict Fauci and call Covid19 a “Democratic Hoax” back in February.

No one would blame Fauci if he retired right now.

When conspiracy loonies on the right started to harass Fauci’s family and call him incompetent he stayed in the limelight, the one voice of reason at the highest levels of government.

While Trump was holding rallies with thousands of elderly Trumpers gathered together Fauci was saying “wear a mask, avoid large crowds”.

I’m still surprised that Trumpers went to rallies after Herman Cain died. I wonder how many Trump fans came down with the ‘Rona after a rally and didn’t tell anyone… I wonder how many have died.

On a personal level, I’ve been wearing a mask since March, in the last few months I’ve donated blood twice, both times I came back negative for Covid19 antibodies in my bloodstream.

I guess that silly mask works.

Many on the Right would call me a liberal snowflake radical communist who is “giving up my Freedom” by wearing a mask.

Maybe I am, but my main reason for wearing a mask is that I don’t want my clients or my family to catch Covid19 from me, especially if I can avoid it.

I’m 46, in OK health and exercise daily, low blood pressure, with O+ blood type… I’m lower risk than most.

I wonder how fast Covid19 would slow down if everyone took precautions and wore a mask for the next month.

????????????????????????????????????

I can’t predict what will happen in the next 4 years, but I’m confident that Joe Biden will fill his cabinet with the smartest and most competent people he can find.

Biden has a reputation for working with both sides of the aisle, and that one factor alone will make get more done than another 4 years of hyper partisan bickering.

I’m going to continue closing solar deals, and do everything in my power to help my team do the same.

Ben Alexander

November 9th, 2020

Evolution of my addiction.

2017 Kawasaki ZX-14 with a 1440cc engine.

This past Friday I traded my black and gold 2014 Honda CB1000r for the Green Machine pictured above. I took this pic to remember the moment….

I bought the black Honda CB about a week after my divorce went through two years ago. It was my first brand new bike, and in two years I put 8,000 miles (and 2 rear tires) on the Honda. It was BY FAR the fastest machine I’ve ever owned, electronically limited at 145mph.

I was also dealing with that internal emotional turmoil that anyone goes through at the end of a 20 year marriage. There were times when I went out and rode until my hands buzzed. There are some who say riding is like therapy, and I’m not going to argue different. Sometimes I would ride far out into the boonies with no destination in mind, just riding, listening to the wind and shifting through the corners.

With a 1,000cc engine the 2014 Honda was my first truly modern motorcycle…. before the 2014 I owned a 1978 Honda Hawk with a 400cc motor. It was a cool bike, I rescued it from a barn in the late 1990’s and cleaned it up. It had a kick starter!

I rode the Hawk from 1997 until 2015!

I had to adjust my brain and riding skills to go from the ancient 400cc Honda to the 2014 Honda CB with the 1,000cc motor. The 2014 bike had a close ratio six speed shifter, so there was power all over the place, but it revved too high above 120mph. On high speed runs I could burn half a tank of gas in just 20 miles…

Going from the 2014 Honda to the newer ZX-14 also requires a shift in skills, the Green Machine is even faster and the stakes are higher… but I’m taking my time getting used to the new bike.

Inexperienced riders get into trouble because they ignore physics, don’t wear safety gear, and they fail to respect the machine. I’m not doing at wheelies at 100mph waring flipflops cargo shirts and a tank top.

Yes, I’ve seen riders do this.

NO mandatory helmet law here in Gator land. ‘Murica !!!!!!

OK, this is the point when you are going to tell me I’m going to die, and you’re 100% correct, I’m going to die at some point in the future. When I do high speeds I tend to do it on an empty highway when traffic is light to non-existent. I never ride in the rain if I can help it. I’m wearing helmet, long pants, ballistic jacket, gloves, boots, etc.

There are some riders who will claim they rode from Tampa to Orlando going 150mph the entire time and I can tell you with normal traffic that’s damn near impossible. Most riders will go fast for a little bit, maybe a mile or so, then slow down as they catch up with traffic.

Going REALLY fast on 2 wheels is super loud, super windy and exhausting.

So why the hell did I buy an insanely fast ZX-14 ??????

#1. Because I got a high trade value on the CB1000r.

#2. Because the ‘Rona might kill me next week.

#3. Both the 1978 and the 2014 Hondas had very little wind protection. Getting blown around at 100mph is not fun, even worse on a gusty day with crosswinds. The full fairing on the Green Machine creates an aerodynamic bubble that wraps around the rider starting at 80mph. This makes a big difference, especially on a longer highway ride.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

I sold my ’78 Honda a long time ago, but it would be fun to ride the 2017 Kawasaki and then jump on the old Honda, just to see the change in technology from 1978 to 2017.

Most of the guys who buy a ZX-14 tend to be around my age, with a few decades of riding experience… I’ve been riding on and off for 25 years.

I respect the machine, and I’m a sober rider. I want to be one of those cool dudes who still rides a crotch rocket at 65 years old.

But sometimes you just want to take it easy…. and this is why my other bike is a 2013 Vrod:

Happy Riding !!!!!!!

Ben Alexander

October 10, 2020.

Best way to get a higher credit score, long term.

Your credit score is based on a formula that looks at your age, your amount of debt, and your record of paying bills since age 18. In many ways your credit score measures how much you can be trusted with money, so if your score is too low it will make your life difficult, unless you have oodles of cash in the bank and you can buy everything without a loan.

When I turned 40 my credit score was below average, in the low 600’s. I had too much debt as a ratio to my income and my debt was increasing over time. I bought some used Dave Ramsey paperback books on Amazon and read them from cover to cover.

If your credit is poor take a minute to go to Amazon and buy one of Dave’s books as a used paperback. Read the damn thing, and start changing your thinking about money. You’ll spent $6 to get a book that will help you save tens of thousands of dollars in future interest payments!

You can have low debt and great credit even if your income is low, it just takes discipline and time to get there.

I don’t have a credit card to my name, and that one factor alone insures that my debt is decreasing every single month. The only plastic I carry is a debit card, with a couple hundred bucks on it… and I’ve been using debit only for the last six years!

I’ve paid off over $300,000 in debt since I started reading Ramsey’s books. I now teach the class at my church…. my credit score went from low 600’s to 800 plus. I can now qualify for loans at 3% interest, but I don’t need any loans!

When you fix your THINKING your finances will improve. When your finances get better your credit score will get better and you’ll have MORE peace and less stress.

Hope that helps!

Ben Alexander

August 24, 2020