My Moment with Paul Newman

Posted: July 14, 2012 in Humor, My Whirled, Stories
Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

The Thinking Viking “sort of” met Paul Newman once. Not really, but let me explain.  I was on my way to a Genetics lab for school at the good old University of Colorado, Boulder. I was on my only vehicle, my beloved 1978 Kawasaki KZ1000 Z1-R.  When new, it was the fastest production motorcycle on the planet. I called her “Goose” after Max’s freind in Mad Max who rode a nearly identical bike in the movie.  Thing was beauty.  Modernized, electronic, mildly advanced  ignition, rejetted cards, bad ass air intake, custom windshield…  prolly about 125 horsepower.  Handled like a water buffalo, but she was pretty quick.  Figure 9.5-10 sec quarter mile.

Anyhow, I was still pretty punk at the time, I was in my bad ass leather – with spikes, mind you, my own semi-mind-trip-with-chaos art on the back.  I pull up next to a nice old red Ferrari on my right.  Late fifties. It just gets better the closer I get.  Bystanders are staring. This thing is NICE – museum nice.  Million dollar nice. I am impressed – I love cars, the crazier and more bad ass the better.

So I pull up to the stop line and look over to check it out at rest.  I am jealous.  Then I look at the driver.

He seems familiar.  Hmmm.  Brain starts clicking.  Whirrrr. Click. Click.  Then, “ping”.  I get a hit.

NASCAR Hat.  Aviator shades, large and dark.  NASCAR Pit Crew jacket.  Older white dude who looks familiar.  Yes, I am actually a NASCAR fan- prefer Formula – 1, but meh, fast cars. Cool.

I know who this guys is.  That’s fucking Paul Newman.  He owns a NASCAR car  employs a Pit Crew. I know he owns old sports cars.  I cock my head and rise my helmet’s visor, an eyebrow raised, looking right at him. Sunglasses. Over-sized, I’d say, like celebrities wear when they are going under cover.

He nods, and smiles. A hand is briefly raised from the wheel in a subtle wave.  It is returned by my hand raise from the bars briefly.  I grin. The light turns green.

I left that damn Ferrari in the dust.

It’s a simple matter of weight ratios.

Think about it.


PS I sold that bike many years later for four times what i paid for it, to a young Japanese man named “Testuo”

  1. “I left that damn Ferrari in the dust” – heh heh! Perfect ending to that little scenario.

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