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Posts Tagged ‘GANGNAM STYLE’

Red Rocks

Red Rock Canyon In Route To Laughlin

Year-end stories are always interesting to me.

Publications around the world rate stories, detail online traffic numbers, select the best leaders and generally give readers a special year in review.

On the national stage here are a few of my more notables:

We had what I’d call the best supporting furniture award…that went to the empty chair that actor Clint Eastwood spoke to throughout his speech at the Republican National Convention.  We narrowly re-elected a president.  John Edwards and Roger Clemens, both escaped conviction.  There was the epic fall of Lance Armstrong.  There was the Korean pop singer, Psy and that Gangnam Style video which skyrocketed a catchy tune into YouTube superstardom.  We bought more than 48 million iPads, weathered a couple of hurricanes, and cheered for the Austrian skydiver Felix Baumgartner who, broke the sound barrier from 24 miles up.

Baker City at HCMR

Baker City at HCMR

When I look back on the motorcycle rides there was:

LAUGHLIN RIVER RUN – in April the Road Glide was shipped to the Las Vegas desert.  Then it’s a short 100 mile jaunt through the desert to Laughlin, NV and it’s a great way to escape the Oregon monsoon rain to enjoy the heat of the canyons.  And being close to the Colorado River and between two mountain ranges in the Mojave Desert there are a lot of scenic rides with panoramic views to enjoy.  Not to mention the motorcycle rally itself.

HELLS CANYON MOTORCYCLE RALLY – in June, some riding buddies took off on 3-days of enjoying nature’s perfume – the sweet smell of rain showers on the cedar and pine forest – into the Cuprum-Sheep Rock country.  At times, the cold rain made us wish for a fishing lure and then there were other times the motorcycle tires were inches from the edge of a 1,000-foot drop-off while in the next instant the left-view mirror came pretty close to scraping a craggy rock wall on the grade coming up from Hells Canyon Reservoir into the mountains…  it’s always an exciting adventure in Baker City!  But hey, that rain is a “summer” adventure in Oregon.

On top of Bear Tooth Pass

On top of Bear Tooth Pass

FOUR-CORNERS MOTORCYCLE LOOP – in late August the posse set out for the mystical 4-corners.  It turned into a 4000-miles epic journey over a couple weeks that led us through Eastern Oregon, Southern Idaho, Utah, New Mexico, Arizona, Colorado, Nebraska, Wyoming, South Dakota/Sturgis, Montana, Northern Idaho, Washington and then back home.  Moab, the 4-corners and Bear Tooth Pass were the highlights.  It was amazing scenery and viewing it all from back-roads on a motorcycle made it all the more fun.  The trip was much more than just a motorcycle ride.  We were exposed to searing heat, dodged wildfires and rode through mud-flows so deep on Colorado’s Million Dollar Highway that we could have caught trout with the right fishing gear!  The gist of the ride was exploring Moab and 4-corners, but the searing summer heat kept us from really getting to know the area well, and it gave me lots of ideas for future trips.

STREET VIBRATIONS –  One of my favorite ways to end the Northwest riding year is this late September trip to Reno.  The drive is pretty quick and it always guarantee’s the heat of the valley inter-mixed with cool mountain meadows and panoramic views of the Sierra Nevada mountains. The crux of the ride is of course the rally and wide assortment of builders and vendor booths along with coming back with a to-do laundry list of possible winter projects for the motorcycle.  It’s not like we’re going to be loafing around on the couch this winter, right?!

Street Vibrations 2012

Street Vibrations 2012

That was my look back and it helps to motivate me to plan for 2013.  A couple of rides already blocked out on the calendar are the Harley-Davidson 110th Anniversary in Milwaukee and “Shark Week” in Utah.

In looking back on 2012, we also need to keep in our thoughts and prayers those who were met with tragedy this year, whether from storms or gunfire here at home, or on a battlefield on foreign soil.  May 2013 be safer, healthier and happier for all of us.

Photos taken by author.

All Rights Reserved © Northwest Harley Blog
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Gangnam Style Opening Ceremony In Penang Malaysia

Unless you’ve been hiding under a rock because you’re scared to death of the politicians that want to destroy our Freedoms, then you’ve likely heard of the song Gangnam Style by the Korean rapper PSY (video HERE).  It’s hard to utter the words “Korean” and “rapper” in the same sentence and keep a straight face.

Gangnam Style was used for the opening ceremonies (Video HERE) for the $2M RM (2M Malaysian Ringgits = ~$700K U.S.) 8000 sq.ft. Harley-Davidson dealer in Penang, Malaysia this month.

It’s a crazy world when a Korean pop song (K-pop) is used to introduce an American iconic brand (which is the poster child for freedom) to Malaysian motorcycle enthusiasts.  In case you didn’t do the Google, Malaysia is a country where 60% (approx. 25M people) are Muslims and if I understand the ruling correctly, dancing is not something permissible.

Harley-Davidson Penang

The K-pop song shot to meteoric fame during the Olympics.  It got another boost when Justin Bieber’s manager (Scooter Braun) picked up the group and they recently performed on the Today show.   So the song is still lingering around.  PSY (real name is Jae-Sang Park) is a complete goofball.  He looks like someone you’d see at a late night Karaoke club who drank too much Soju (Korean alcohol). He’s singing off pitch, but the sunglasses make you look cool so roll with it and no one should take notice.  The video is like watching rainbows and unicorns in a train wreck. But, then you find yourself for the rest of the day saying out loud over and over…”GANGNAM STYLE”… followed by outbreaks of a goofy horse dancing move in your kitchen.  I mean, you not me of course.

You might be asking yourself the question, what is this Gangnam Style anyway?

Gangnam is actually a very affluent area of Seoul, South Korea.  Evidently it’s not unusual to find Mercedes, Porsches and BMW’s in the area as opposed to Hyundai and Daewoo like in the rest of the city.  ”Gangnam means, it’s like Beverly Hills of Korea.” PSY told ABC news.  Referring to the video PSY says, “But the guy doesn’t look like Beverly Hills. Dance doesn’t look like Beverly Hills. … And the situation in music video doesn’t look like Beverly Hills. But he keeps saying he’s Beverly Hills style. So that’s the point. It’s sort of a twist.”

I love it.

Korean Rapper – PSY

After going viral, PSY’s outrageous dance moves have led to numerous imitation videos, including one here in Oregon featuring the Oregon Duck, the University of Oregon’s mascot. In fact, there was a video released this week where the entire UO band got into the Gangnam Style act HERE during a half-time.

And speaking of Freedom… I like that I live in a country where people are able to work hard and chase whatever awesome dream they can think up.  Even if it’s a goofy dance video that goes viral and they make millions from it.  I want them to be able to order a 52 oz soda if that’s what they want to drink.  I want them to be able to buy a Harley-Davidson, Porsche or Hyundai or whatever it is that makes them happy.  I like living in a country so free that you can defy all the odds.  You can try things and screw up and begin again.  In short, success is an awesome thing.  And living in a country that promotes success and successful living should be trumpeted.  So go for your GANGNAM STYLE to your heart’s content.  We’re still free to dance in our kitchens!

And speaking of success.  Memo to H-D Marketing… please send me a GANGNAM STYLE Harley t-shirt when you get it designed.  I don’t want to buy a Korean knock-off.

UPDATE: September 27, 2012 — According to the Guinness World Records the Gangnam Style video has now become the most liked video of all time on YouTube.

Photos courtesy of H-D Penang, and Michael Kovac/Getty Images

All Rights Reserved © Northwest Harley Blog

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