I can get by with a little help from my friends. So, the question is: How do you clean spokes? I have a million twisted chrome spokes that are chronically black. How can I restore them to their sparkly shine without spending two weeks cleaning a spoke at a time and doing nothing else?… Each month the Iron Steed H.O.G. newsletter includes a trivia question. Recently the question was, “What six nations’ flags have flown over Texas?” As a Daughter of the Republic, I can answer most questions about the history of Texas. In this case, though, it was Debbie Owens who gave the answer at a meeting. The six flags were Spain 1520–1821, France 1682–1762, Mexico 1821–1836, Republic of Texas (a sovereign nation) 1836–1846, United States of America 1845–1861, Confederate States of America 1861–1865, United States of America 1865 to present. Yep. I realize that there are some overlaps and USA is repeated. Good going, Debbie!… Speaking of Iron Steed, don’t forget about Hot Rods & Harleys in June. On the 7th, ABATE Local 17 in conjunction with Iron Steed Harley-Davidson in Vacaville will host the 18th annual American Hot Rod and 21st annual Ride-In Motorcycle Show. It is a lot of fun, and you can see some amazing hot rods and Harleys. Sign in between 9:00 and 11:00 a.m. to enter the show. The Harley winner of best of show will receive a $250 gift card. For more information call Danielle or Dave at 707.455.7000… I am going to break with tradition and give you fair warning about a company. I try never to speak ill of anyone or anything, but there are a fair number of bikers who order bolt-ons and accessories out of catalogs. Historically, I always received a good product and good service with orders out of the J. C. Whitney catalog. However, my most recent experience with Whitney was second only to my traumatic experience of dealing with AT&T. You do not want to be needing customer service with either of these companies. In the case of J. C. Whitney, I ordered running boards and mounting brackets for my truck. I received the wrong boards, and the mounting brackets were not only the wrong ones for my truck, they were also the wrong ones for the boards that they sent. Now begins the marathon calling to customer service. As with AT&T, when I called, I spoke with a person outside the borders of the United States who was challenged to speak English. The information and instructions they gave was either incomplete or entirely wrong. Oh, did I mention that each time you call you never get the same person twice? You frequently call into a different country as well. Unlike the AT&T representatives, the people who spoke for J. C. Whitney seemed to want to do a good job. They just needed to practice their English and receive some training. I will get off the soapbox now. Guess you can tell that this has really riled me up, but by the end of this story, the correct boards and brackets were delivered to my front door… Good luck and get-well wishes are for IHR member Mardi Moore, in Gold Hill, Oregon. Mardi will soon get her post-surgery checkup and the go-ahead to start riding again. Almost a year of no riding, huh, Mardi? Is that almost a year of no riding the galloping horse or the iron horse, or both?… George Lucas immortalized Modesto with his movie about his youth and his hometown. American Graffiti brings about a nostalgic reminder of the 50’s with music, drive-ins and cruising. By the way, “cruising” was originally called “dragging.” Around my locale, we called it “dragging main,” but I digress. After the movie put them on the map, Modesto has continued to celebrate that truly American tradition. Unfortunately, cruising got out of hand in 1993 and has been banned ever since. So, there may be no cruising, but there will be a huge celebration guaranteed to revive the spirit of the 50’s. There will be a classic car parade, festivities and even carhops on roller skates at the A&W. Modesto H.O.G. takes an active part in this event. Go on June 12, 13 and 14. The parade will be on Friday, June 12. You will have a ton of fun… Happy birthday to all motorcycle riders who celebrate in June. Happy birthday to IHR members Rod Colman in Hollister and Ed Linderman in Shingle Springs. In Santa Cruz, happy birthday to Everett Downs, Adam Kraten, Teresa Pellemeier and Russ Nagle. Happy birthday to Mike Tahija in Manteca and to Barbara and Barron Sundancer in Vacaville. Happy birthday to Robert Kishi in the Stockton H.O.G., Amy DeNero in the Monterey Bay H.O.G./Santa Cruz Chapter, Pam Hensley in the NorthCoast H.O.G. in Ferndale, and to David Moreno in the San Gabriel Valley H.O.G. and from Diamond Bar. Happy birthday to Les “Raptor” Winkler in the Solano County Marines MC, to Jim Greer in the Hot Chocolate Gang in Santa Nella and to Glenn Phillips, president of ABATE 17 in Solano County.