Wednesday, July 03, 2013

Staying Cool in the Heat on your bike

It's been 100 + degrees for the last four days. Do you really want to ride your bike, especially an air cooled model in this heat? NO. I'll introduce you to the cool vest. The cool vest is a vest with polyacrylamide gel, the stuff that can absorb like 20 times its weight in water. You soak your vest, put it on and the wetness will act like a swamp cooler as you travel down the road. The wind cools you by evaporating the water. In store only right now. don't go out in the heat without one.

Saturday, December 29, 2012

Being a business owner

Isn't it great owning a business? You get stuff like this email all the time:

Supposedly from the Better Business Bureau
Complaint against my business, # 14304789

I know this is fake, but at least they could make it sound convincing. Here are the words:

The Better Business Bureau has been entered the above mentioned claim letter from one of your users as regards their business relations with you. The details of the consumer's worry are available for review at a link below. Please give attention to this question and communicate with us about your view as soon as possible. ....

I don't know about you, but by the time I graduated from the 8th grade, I could put a sentence together better than the first sentence: of your users as regards their business relations with you... Come on now.  ...The details of customers worry.... It just keeps getting worse. 

Good luck scam artist. I'm not going to waste my time on this when I've got an inheritance arriving from Nigeria any day now.

Monday, September 10, 2012

I can't believe that it has been over a year since I posted on here. My regular customers that know me, still pop in from time to time, but I've got to say, the Recession is taking it's toll.

I recently purchased some inventory from the Renegade Classics in Freemont, CA that went out of business. They were a victim of the Recession. It's been tough on all of us small guys.

I keep hearing the politicians talk about small business and tax cuts, and regulation cuts and this that and the other. SHUT UP. We need CUSTOMERS first. Everything else can wait. Get people back to work.

My chief competitor is still holding in there also even though we both share the same affliction: lack of customers. I'm still surprised they have any customers at all. I've heard more horror stories this year about my competition not standing behind any of the product they sell. One story had an employee threatening to have a customer that spent over $1000 in the store thrown out forcefully by the police for begging for some help with a zipper that broke within two days of purchasing a set of saddlebags.  (Not to worry, I fixed it for them for nothing.)

I could go on with the lies and other stories, but it doesn't do any good. People, even the Christian clubs, still frequent the place. I guess it just doesn't pay to be nice to people any more. The Internet, which is where I started, is part of the reason.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Motorcycle Run to Gilroy

Yesterday, Discount Leather Mart hosted the start of Cross Ministries Poker Run from Modesto to Gilroy, CA. The run ended in Gilroy where a Stunt Bike Show, Armature Boxing matches, Comedian, and Bike & Car show were being held by the parent chapter of Cross Ministries.

It was an early day for me and members of Cross who volunteered to help set up. Here are a few pics.

Early morning. DLM provided Coffee and Doughnuts 

From inside the shop: getting ready to leave

The tail-gunners on this trip are ready for the rest to go

If you have a local event and would like to start, or have Discount Leather Mart as a stop, please contact us so we can discuss ways of making your event participants have a good time when they are here.

Discount Leather Mart is an HONEST, straightforward motorcycle leather shop in Modesto, California. Other shops have been greedy and have not treated event participants well. We are different.

Another Friend and Customer Passes

It seems like my very good customers who turned friends just want to leave me. It has been a few months since Hoan (John) Nguyen passed away. Today, I felt the need to get it into my blog.

John rode a Honda VTX 1300 when I first met him. He came into Discount Leather Mart looking for something, I'm not sure what, but he always returned to shop with me. He always had a project he was looking to do. A lot of his passion when into finding the right thing for his lovely wife Bertha, and thinking about how they were going to spend time together. He was a regular visitor to my shop, stopping in at least once per week. One rainy November, he and Bertha showed up in a pickup truck, pulling a trailer that contained a nice shiny Arlen Ness Custom Chopper, with rain drops all over the new bike. Earlier this year, he picked up a used Harley Road King so he could carry more stuff. He always wanted something different, and he would get it.

I didn't realize it when I met him, but John was a Nurse Practitioner, very similar to a Doctor. Stress and other factors caused my blood pressure to soar in 2010 (210/125). I went to a clinic and received some medication that worked in lowering my BP. Later they changed the medication to a simple water pill. My BP again soared and I developed pseudo-gout, a painful knee disorder that rendered me unable to walk. I asked John for some help and promptly got it. He refused to accept payment for treating me.

John decided to retire at the end of March 2011, and talked of building a clinic in Mexico. After retirement, he spent two weeks in Hawaii with his lovely wife and road the island on a rented Harley Davidson. He went to Laughlin Bike Week within two weeks after returning from Hawaii and then he go sick. Food Poisoning was what he told me later that week. He came by the shop on a Friday where we got the mirrors fixed on his Honda. He was to ride with the American Legion Riders the next day but was too ill to go. He had been diagnosed with pneumonia late that Friday. He died later in the weekend from Heart Failure.

What a shock to everyone. I talked to his doctor, a good friend of mine since college, and he was in as much shock as everyone. No one seemed to know that John had heart problems. The autopsy revealed that the heart disease had been with John for at least 10 years. Perhaps John knew. Who is to say? We miss him though. Myself, the people who rode with him and were close and I'm sure his wife and children. We wish he was back.
Bikes line up during John Nguyen's Celebration of Life Ceremony

John lived a remarkable life. A boat person from Viet Nam after the US withdrawal in 1972, he arrived here as a young teenager. He lived at the homeless shelter here in Modesto, CA (Modesto Gospel Mission), when he was going to school to become a Nurse. He worked feeding the homeless and cleaning for his room & board. Later he told me, he moved to a slum area north of Modesto where is apartment was regularly broken into. He only had a motorcycle to his name so he didn't care. He did well in life, and I am sure he is doing well right now.

Rest in Peace my friend.

Sunday, July 31, 2011

Pillsbury Dough Boy Dies

SAD NEWS - Please join me in remembering YET ANOTHER great icon of the entertainment community. The Pillsbury Dough Boy died yesterday of a yeast infection and traumatic complications from repeated pokes to the belly. He was 71. Dough Boy is survived by his wife Play Dough, three children, John Dough, Jane Dough, and Dill Dough, plus they had one in the Oven. Services were held at 3:50 for about 20 minutes...

Okay so I stole it from someone else. It's still funny and quite original

Monday, March 14, 2011


The Shop is moving again. I know what you are saying: "Again? I just figured out where you were!" Hopefully this is the last time for a while. When I got the present location, the economy was reeling, sales were down and rent was in the stratosphere. A rent increase was in the works because my lease said so. I bailed rather than go under and got my present place. Much lower rent here but it came with a trade-off: No visibility. The visibility factor is real. Many of my customers, even when they knew where I was, still passed me by because they couldn't see my place. Put on top of that the fact that my landlord allows no signs on the street and well, declining sales. My competition moved to a great location on the same road I was on. The competition though, still treat their customers like dirt. I hear it all the time. I just need to get more noticeable.

Here is the scoop on the new location. It is right across the street in another industrial warehouse area, similar to where I'm at now. The big difference is, I can have a sign right on the street. My shop will be visible FROM THE STREET. There is a custom motorcycle shop in the complex. There are two motorcycle club clubhouses in the complex. So where is it?

1124 Kansas Avenue
Suite B3
Modesto, CA 95351


Discount Leather Mart

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