Have You Heard

The personal site of Jack Baruth

An Oral History Of Spec Miata


Talk about a tough way to assemble a thousand words.


The End Of The Affair


The endless saga of the fake cop and the Heritage sale comes to an end with my listing for the pickups and strap I acquired with the guitar. We’ll see what they fetch — but at this point, I’ll just be glad to say goodbye to my final ties with the Heritage Owners Club.

A Brief Statement On The Leadership Change At TTAC


This morning, Derek announced that he was leaving the post of Managing Editor at The Truth About Cars. His replacement is ShiftAndDrive.com’s Mark Stevenson.


192, 119, Whatever It Takes


If you’re a driving instructor, and this conversation doesn’t make you shudder all the way down to the base of your spine, you’re not paying attention.


I’m So Quotable, You Already Know


In the aftermath of the driving instructor death at Disney World, I got a couple of calls from major media. One of them decided to quote me extensively.


Some Of The Gear, All Of The Time


It’s a funny thing — you can spend as much on safety gear for a motorcycle as you can for the bike itself. Of course, having paid $400 for a Honda Rebel once, I already knew that.


Spotter’s Guide To The May 2015 Road&Track


The cover of this month’s R&T features the SCG003 designed and built by my fellow Ferrarichat troll with whom I’ve maybe had three conversations very good friend Jim Glickenhaus. If you have $2.35 million, you can buy one.

Regrettably, I had nothing to do with the SCG article. However, if your budget is closer to $23,500 than $2.35 million, you might want to open the magazine…


In Which The Author, And His Son, Acquire Motorcycles

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I didn’t ride a real, clutch-and-shift motorcycle until I was fifteen years old, when I managed to cajole a friend of a friend into letting me ride his 250 dirt bike around my neighborhood for an afternoon. Nor have I ever received any in-person instruction in motorcycle operation. Not to worry; I learned the skill by osmosis, watching two episodes of Eighties television. The first episode was the episode of Miami Vice where Danny Sullivan races a Ninja 600 against his father in a parking garage. From that, I learned body positioning and the idea that motorcycles steer by turning towards the apex at low speeds and away from the apex at high speeds. (This idea, known as countersteering, is apparently controversial. Some people really think that you steer a bike at freeway speeds by turning, not leaning.)

That’s an important lesson, but the critical thing, the knowledge that allowed me to ride away on that dirt bike without embarrassing myself, came from an episode of “Simon and Simon”. You probably don’t remember this, but “Simon and Simon” is basically a TV show about what would happen if Bark M. and I opened a private detective agency. The older brother is an unrefined boor who waves a .44 Magnum around and drives a Dodge Power Wagon — that would be me, of course. The younger brother is very suave and handsome and doesn’t like to get his hands dirty.

In one episode, they’re chasing a bad guy who hops on a motorcycle and rides away. There are two Harleys sitting around so the brothers jump on. Now, of course the younger Simon has no idea how to operate a Harley so the older brother yells, as he’s riding off in pursuit,

“There’s nothing to it! First is down, the other four are up!”


Salon Declares A War Of Disinformation On Christianity


“Prior to his resurrection, Christ descended to the underworld — a paradox most churches prefer not to confront.”

That’s a headline in Salon from yesterday. As far as progressive battle cries go, it takes some beating, containing as it does willful ignorance of both faith and reason as well as a full-frontal strawman assault, all in just under twenty words. It’s easy to disprove the headline, and the article that follows, in a single hyperlink, but there is additional merit to be had in the examination of Salon’s reasons for publishing what amounts to libel, if only to satisfy what I think of as the “Winston Smith” aspect — namely “I understand HOW: I do not understand WHY.”


I Have Seen The Future Of American Medicine, And It Is ImmediaDent


Last time I went to Miller Motorsports Park, I wound up with pneumonia from a day digging at the Salt Flats. This time it wasn’t quite that bad, but when I crawled out of bed from the first night of fever, knelt on the cold wood floor, and spit bloody pieces of a tooth into my hand, I have to admit that I made a few hasty and ill-considered vows to never again visit the Beehive State. Then I examined my mouth in the mirror. I’m currently, ahem, between healthcare. Could I let this minor bit of dental rectification wait a while?

Nope — my reflection was enough to frighten children. More than it normally is, even. Time to investigate the wide world of cash-on-the-barrelhead dentistry.


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