If you read “The Piston” by H.P. “Capt. Pete” Caldwell before the “Foreword” you might wonder how this falls in the genre of motorcycling. Really it’s simple. The digital age brought us the phenomenon known as bulletin boards or BBS’s. Bad Weather Bikers has been the root source for many of my friendships in the last eight years. Same goes for this one with the Captain.
Capt. Pete made a decision to forego his early retirement and buy another fishing vessel and go back to his passion, commercial fishing. The plan was to sell off or give away as many worldly possessions as he could to simplify his move to Guam.
At one point he offered up a piston, complete with a story, for anyone who might find it interesting enough to enjoy. The piston was from one of his old fishing boats and the story is almost priceless. My dad was an old sailor and someone who enjoyed items that most people would call trash. I told him of Capt. Pete’s piston and he said he’d take it to set on the mantle of his fireplace in the ‘Hog Pen’.
Life happens. Dad unexpectedly left us before Capt. Pete ever had the chance to send it. On the one year anniversary of his passing we assembled a memorial ride in his honor. Another close friend, Henrik Bo Pedersen, presented me with the piston at the kick off to the ride. Capt. Pete had arranged the whole deal to coincide with the ride and a year or so later the story that goes with the piston landed in my mail box.
Capt. Pete was generous enough to allow me to use “The Piston” story here. It lacks what you might call motorcycle content but when you also know that he is an avid motorcyclist, the owner of an S1W Buell and that our friendship was the direct result of two-wheeled camaraderie the connection becomes complete.
I don’t know too many old sages who can spin a tale as well as the Captain so sit back and enjoy!