Monday, January 12, 2015

Motorcycle House

If I could find a way, I'd figure out how to make a living as a writer.

The odd thing about that statement is, I actually have made a very nice life by writing. That's mostly what lawyers do. The only rub is, it's all too often a stress-inducing affair, and the writing lawyers do lacks, well, appeal.

When I started the ScootCommute my only thought was to provide a public service of sorts, if anyone could find me, of course.

Well, find me they did.  Many more people found me than I ever thought possible.  Still, to cast the ScootCommute in its broadest category, it's a moto blog.  That is a very, very, very narrow slice of the internet pie. The saving grace is that the internet is very, very, very, very, very big, and it's still growing by leaps and bounds. Even a minuscule insignificant crumb off a teeny tiny slice is something.  Like the Earth is, in relation to the known universe.

The ScootCommute has allowed me to practice writing in new ways.  In a more relaxed conversational style.  As a story teller, rather than as a compeller of things yet to pass.  In a way that people may actually read because my writing is tolerable. Not because my preface was 'without prejudice'.

Among the folks who have taken notice are publicists eager to get their products noticed beyond manufacturers' and e-retailers' web sites, in the vast uncharted sea of social media.

And that's how Motorcycle House came to me, as it also came knocking on other bloggers' virtual doors, offering products to review.

I took my time deciding whether reviewing products was something that made sense for me, and for the ScootCommute.

Oh, right.  I have reviewed products.  Lots of products.  Just check out the gear posts. The thing is though, I bought 99% of those products, or received them as gifts from friends and family. I was free to say what I wanted about them, unfettered by any kind of quid pro quo.

I treasure the creative freedom I have here, and I don't want to sacrifice it just to get my hands on some free products.  I also don't want to waste sponsors' time. They have a business to run, and they have needs too.  Last, but far from least, there is you. I don't want to disappoint you.  Whatever I decide to write about, I want you to appreciate my words.  I want you to come away with something you'll value.  After all, a blog without regular readers is just a waste of bits and bytes.

In the spirit of the ScootCommute, after deliberation, I am pleased to introduce you to Motorcycle House.  They have a lot to offer. Though the products they sell are primarily aimed at the cruiser crowd, even a scooterist like yours truly can find moto-happiness in their catalog.

Now that the introduction is out of the way, I'm sure that some of you will have clicked on the links to take a peek at their offerings.  I'm equally sure that some of you are wondering which products tickled my fancy.

As you know from a previous post, the answer is 'jackets'.

I love jackets.

Always have, and I think I always will. 

I've mostly been a shy-ish unassuming kind of guy.  Except when it comes to jackets.  One of the great things about riding is that I get to wear jackets.  Serious jackets.  Jackets with body armour.  Jackets that tell a story.  'I think that guy rides. Check out his jacket.'

There was a suede fleece-lined Davy Crocket jacket that saw me through junior college.  I still remember the sound and feel of the fringes as I trudged endless miles on cold cold nights.  The fringe made my thighs sting when it was really truly cold.  I know, I know, but it was the 70's.  1970 in fact.  I rode buses not Vespas back then.  The shoe leather express.  Psychedlic was in, Easy Rider was in, I was in, sort of.  I was serious about peace, love, and rock-and-roll.  My generation had broken with the past in a serious way.  We were revolutionaries, all of us.  We were the counter-culture, we were anti-establishment, man.  Jimi Hendrix, Cream, Frank Zappa, and Jefferson Airplane.  The White Album.  The blues;  Paul Butterfield, Janis Joplin, John Mayall; and serious folk; Joni Mitchell, Carol King and Leonard Cohen.  We were going to change the world.  Woodstock, weed, Vietnam; and my Davy Crocket jacket.  That, and my army jacket with the peace symbol painted on the back.  Honestly.  Those were the days.  Timothy Leary was the high priest with a simple message: tune in, turn on, drop out!  Haight Ashbury and the summer of love, my friends.  How Susan agreed to date me back then is one of life's deep mysteries.  I had hair down to my shoulders!  My god I'm lucky.

Flash forward.  The Motorcycle House jacket I really wanted was out of stock.  Wouldn't you know?

Fortunately, they have a heart of gold.   They suggested that I try another jacket.  Oh well, 'OK' I thought, but without much enthusiasm to be perfectly honest.  'What if we send you this other jacket  and when the jacket you want comes in, we'll send you that one too?'  Really?

And that's how Jacket Number One from Motorcycle House landed on my doorstep.

My next post will be a product review of Jacket Number One.

We'll see what you think.

Stay tuned!


RichardM said...

It took me quite a while before agreeing as the offer sounded questionable. And my blog doesn't see as much traffic as many others so the marketing value didn't really make sense. But, no issues at all though I haven't heard back from the marketing person since my initial review. Maybe he is waiting for my promised complete review.

Trobairitz said...

I have all their emails blocked as spam now. I got so sick of their emails and when I didm't respond they actually bothered another blogger to email me on their behalf. Not cool.

While most folks seem to have success with Motorcycle House, they are a company I will never, and I do mean never, personally order from or endorse because of the email tactics I have personally experienced.

David Masse said...

Richard doing product reviews when approached by a supplier is far from an easy undertaking.

That`s why I felt I had to share my approach to this.

I think that there can be value as long as there is full disclosure, and the review generally has the potential to help readers with their gear choices.

Time will tell how well I manage to juggle the competing forces here.

David Masse said...

Brandy I sympathise. Spam is the bane of our existence.

I respect your choice, and I devote a fair amount of time blitzing spam comments into the ether, and blocking spam in my e-mail.

I was approached with a request to provide another blogger's e-mail address (not yours), and I politely declined. I also declined to act as a go-between, when that was suggested.

As for as Motorcycle House is concerned, my experience with their marketing director has been a decent one.

Conchscooter said...

The woman got quite shirty when I said no. I tried advertising for a while and hated it. I like tending my own plot and not being beholden to anyone for anything.

The City Mouse in the Country said...

I've done one thing for them and they provided me with a bit of content during a slow time for me. I really can't complain, plus frankly nearly everything I've seen and read about their products is positive (even on forums where you would think the writer would not be pressured to provide a good review). I buy off of them again.

David Masse said...

I hear you Michael. We'll see where courting the devil takes me.

Maybe Key West :)

David Masse said...

Rob I was a little gun-shy, but I have to say I've been pretty impressed as well.

Stay tuned. Doing a decent review is more work than the average person might expect.

VStar Lady said...

David - they seem to be on the up and up, but I still said no. I didn't need or want the latest offer of a jacket offered as a 'Christmas gift' to me (nor did I want any of the other product.) Hope you enjoy yours.

len@RE-GLAZE-IT said...

Hi David ,
Hope your having a great start to 2015!
Personally i would roll with it mate....doing a product review, we all love ya man, what's the worst that can happen?
I'm ever the optimist and I'm going to say that good things could come from this.
David you write really well and I would love to see you has a columnist.....say in a moto mag.
The odd review will never put me off tuning in to the scoot commute.

David Masse said...

Initially I kind of felt the same way. But then my love of jackets did my in.

David Masse said...

Thanks Len. I suspect my first attempts at product reviews will be a little 'odd', so you won't be disappointed.

Always nice to see you drop by Len.

The copyright in all text and photographs, except as noted, belongs to David Masse.