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    • Chris, I'm one of those people whose life has been significantly changed by the connections and influence of the Adventure Rider motorcycle forum. I was just reflecting and tracing back some of what has evolved in my own life and activities as a result of getting involved there. Many people grow from that involvement into a broadly branching tree with each limb producing influences, opportunities, and events affecting others (which in turn seeds many other trees). As an example, although there were many steps in between my initially getting involved with the forum and a recently formed local motorcycle club cutting the ribbon on a new trail this past weekend, I am confident that none of that would have happened without the site you created. Kind of scary to think about how far-reaching it all can be. In this case, it was for the good. Maybe Adventure Rider, and other similar forums, can sometimes be compared to a greenhouse that starts "plants" that eventually flourish far beyond the site itself.

    • I was also at the event this weekend, and I'll also echo Cannonshot's remarks. I have been blessed by a host of real-life friends and experiences that I would have never encountered had it not been for the forum.

    • Thank you, Cannonshot. You were everywhere—wrapping ankles, towing a motorcycle with a blown water pump, rescuing water crossers in distress. If only your helmet was black you'd be the rescue ninja of the week.

    • I'll add to the chorus of people saying their lives were significantly impacted by Adventure Rider's existence. I took a 5 week cross country ride last summer on my beater '70s Honda (I left a year ago yesterday), and the trip would not have been possible without a ton of help from people on AdvRider. The community was insanely generous and friendly -- both beforehand, where people helped me figure out the best roads, lent me (and in some cases gave me) gear that I needed, and so on...and during the trip, when I stayed at people's houses, rode with them, and fixed my bike in their garages. Seriously, the community exceeded my wildest dreams of how nice people could be. I'm looking forward to the day when I get to go to a rally and meet some more inmates.

    • I hear you about the generosity, Jesse. They supplied me with a KTM 500! And a fancy helmet with intercom that saved what's left of my brain on a fall. And motocross boots and body armor. I would have significantly more battle wounds if not for them.

      Pic by Cannonshot:

    • BTW, the mantra of ADV has always been pics or it didn't happen. And it's logical extension: pic first, help second.

    • Did you ever imagine that one day you would be riding an off-highway motorcycle in the north woods of Wisconsin with a bunch of people you only just met for the first time? And once you were there with them, it was like you've all known each other for years, So much common knowledge, experience, and values. Things don't normally happen that way without the magic involved with like-minded people that share close connections long before they have even heard of each other thanks to a forum like the one you created. Extraordinary isn't a big enough word to describe it all.

    • Chris,

      The events that come out of are pretty awesome. I have been to a handful of them around California, from Death Valley to the high Sierra. The variety and kindness of the people who attend restore my faith in humanity. I always like engaging with people I met after the events too; commenting about an inside joke we came up with, making sure they got home OK, or sending them cards during their recovery, as the case may be. LOL.

      I am disappointed I won't be able to make the CSM Peace Party Rally in Kansas. For those of you who know how heated the debates can get in CSM, you'll understand what an accomplishment it is to get unlike minded people together for a good time.

      Advrider is a great community, and it has helped a lot of people over the years. Whatever you thought it might be, I'm glad it became what it did. Thanks Baldy.

    • Another thanks to the ADV community, and all it's citizens. Like others, this CADAVR was my first, and, like most everyone else, I wandered off with more new real life connections than I ever could have expected.

      Much is written about the divisive power of electronic communication, and much of it is accurate. Less is written or discussed about the connective power, though, and that's a shame.

      Thanks to all involved (from Chris on down) for making this community what it is.

    • I have also met many good friends through ADVrider. It is an amazing community and this rally is proof of the connections that can be made. Thanks to Chris for many things, including my great new profile picture. I can honestly say my world is a far different place due to ADV. Many of my close friends were met through the site. Thanks again Chris!

    • I think a large part of the "connective power" of ADV and a few other forums i've been part of is a common passion. If you look at other social media platforms (Public FB areas or Reddit for example) there is a great deal less civility at times.

      Once i dove into ADV, i knew meating people was going to be part of the experience and I've generally conducted myself accordingly.

      CSM still makes me scratch my head though. I hope the Peace Party is a great success and that it tempers some of the rhetoric a bit.

    • Thanks, BlueMule. It's great to see you here.

      It's a strange thing, civility online. Adventure Rider has so many regional forums it's peculiar to see that some of them struggle to stay Civil, like the West regional right now, whereas things seem so great in Central.

      There has long been a debate about anonymity versus real identities for civility. But people who do research on it say it doesn't seem to make a difference. We're all familiar with public figures who can be pretty nasty online.

      In my opinion, the big factor is moderation, which starts with values (love of motorcycling, mutual respect, wanting to be ambassadors for the sport) and translates into some simple, understandable rules (no threats, no racism, no misogyny). Go too far with moderation and people suffocate. Not far enough and good people leave.

    • Hi Chris. (It's me, Rapid Roy) I think I have said ADV cheeered me up when I was down, and so many folks I knew were there already, that it did pretty much feel like home. I have met the Morans from the East, and the folks from Kernville, CA, people at Westfest, and down in Hill Country in Texas. It's full of friends I have not met yet. lol Like the Mule, I don't get CSM either, as I assume I am meeting these folks eventually, so why all the yelling? The Dalai Lama says "When there is time, be nice. There is always time." I like that. These rallies are so much fun for me to finally meet the people I have been talking to. Thanks to you starting it all.

    • Hey Roy! Great to see you here. Love the photo you used for your avatar. 😁

      I will always be inspired by the story of you, your wife and your daughter after she contracted West Nile and you became full-time caregivers. It shores up my faith in humanity.

    • You know, I never did think to ask if it was copyrighted or anything, I am sorry. I clicked on my image folder and that one leaped out at me. Sure, I have others where I may look more foolish, but look at the composition of that photo. and my hair looks pefect Perfect! lol

    • Thank You, Thank You, Thank You for ADVRider. I have some of the best friends that anyone could ask for in my life. I’m sorry I missed CADVR this year. It would have been great to meat you.

      I find it amazing how close a family some of us have become. The willingness to help complete strangers has refreshed my faith in humanity.

    • I'm fairly jealous of your ability with a camera, so we will always have that. lol So much so that I got the wonderful group photo in a larger size, and the one with my goofy face and a guitar on a coffe mug for my wife.

    • PIpe down Troublemaker! Don't make me whip out more bad jokes. lol (Even though you are right. It was great to meet him. We missed the Moran Contingent this year, believe me.)

    • You make some good points about how civility is sometimes lost in online conversations or engagements. The Central Regional is pretty calm because over time we've come to a common understanding of what is acceptable there. It only takes a little moderation from time to time to sustain the atmosphere we have there. People get along and in many cases know each other (or know of each other) enough to not over-react or get into petty arguments. People are genuinely helpful, whether it be with local information or responding to breakdowns or emergencies. Nearly all conversations are respectful, even if they involve some disagreement or minor hazing, and anyone that reads other posts in the forum will quickly recognize what the norm is behavior-wise. Outliers that come in with an unpleasant attitude are often quickly guided into a better method of communicating by their fellow inmates in the region. That said, it only takes one or two outliers to stir up some unpleasantness if they are not quickly tended to by peer inmates or moderators. If left unchecked, the residuals from unproductive conflicts can spark more and more future conflicts as people make judgements about future remarks based on past conflicts. As in most organizations, the attitude of principal portion of the site is related to the attitude of the person at the top of the pyramid. His attitude is manifested in the actions of the moderators and the many inmates that contribute to making the site what it is. ADVrider is blessed with visionary leadership at the top, a fine crew of moderators, and a membership of remarkable inmates that share a common culture and many fine values.

    • Stumbling upon a cheap used KLR, then stumbling upon a thread about 2 guys who rode Africa before turning their bikes into boat motors synergistically drew me in and changed my life in so many ways. Tracy and I have developed life-long friendships with wonderful people who we would never have met had it not been for you, ADV and the great people who put the rallies together. I truly can't express how fulfilling it's been for us. And the folks at the Central Rally are more family than family. Thank you for letting us be a part of it all.

    • when you find yourself agreeing with THIS guy... it's amazing though, what happens when you combine motorcycles, the people who ride them, and the web. Your world suddenly becomes so much bigger, yet so much smaller at the same time. Thanks again, Baldy.

      oh and for the record I've broken bread and riden a lot of miles with three of the posters in this little tiny thread already. Lucky bums, we lot are.