Jocko is No Grease Monkey!

Picking up my ride from
Barber’s Shop Automotive

As I write this post, I just got my Vespa out of the shop. The speedometer cable was broken and needed replacing. I rode it for a while in this state figuring I could just stay with the flow of traffic and I would be good, but realized the cable also controls the odometer. So with the mileage frozen, I felt this was a more urgent problem that needed fixing.

Initially, I took this opportunity to get to know my scooter more intimately, and—no matter how pathetic it may sound from a middle-aged man—to make my master-mechanic dad proud and fix the thing myself. Outside of adding gas or oil to a car, motorcycle, or lawn mower, I have never done any kind of engine work. The fear of tearing something apart and finding a bolt, washer, or something that looks even more important on the garage floor; or turning over an engine I just worked on only to hear something sound terribly wrong, has prevented me from doing anything “manly” when it comes to getting my hands greasy. My kind of greasy hands business is eating burgers and Jimboy’s tacos.

Where does it say “For Mechanics Only”?

Of course, it was easy doing the first step in this DIY process—I bought a Haynes service and repair manual for my Vespa. I found the Piaggio/Vespa Scooters Service and Repair Manual to be utterly confusing. The kind souls on the Modern Vespa forum were a little more helpful, but in the end, I chickened out.

In one of my very first posts, I wrote about how Vespa Club of Sacramento (VCOS) members fix up their own vintage Vespas. I had always hoped to do this one day, but my idle fantasy has had a head-on collision with reality. I can now state (albeit not proudly) I will never buy and fix up a vintage scooter. Who needs those snobs at the VCOS and, for that matter, the Burgundy Topz, anyway! (sniffle)

A “Blue Prynt” for a Big Burger
While my ride was not in the shop, I took the time to do a scooterless burger review.

I cannot explain why the parking lot always
is near vacant when I ride or walk by here.

Blue Prynt Restaurant and Bar, located at 815 11th Street in downtown Sacramento, only a few blocks from where I work, is another one of my white tablecloth burger ventures. Blue Prynt, however, is not as intimidating as Ella’s, Chops, or Grange. The food is reasonably priced and on the rustic American side, which makes it approachable to a lowly State worker like Jocko.

Lunch was very slow on the day I checked it out, so I had an overly-attentive waiter. One good thing about having a waiter hovering over me is that he could avoid the rotten timing that so many, far more busy waiters have when they ask me if everything is alright just when I have taken a bite of food. On the other hand, I wanted to say in frustration, “Hey man, can I take at least two sips without you continually refreshing my water and iced tea? Take a break; I see there is a game on at the bar. Who’s playing? Have a drink while you are checking.”

The Half Pound Burger. The
toothpick is barely hanging on.

Blue Prynt’s contribution to the world of the Great American Sandwich is the “Half Pound Burger.” At first blush, there is nothing distinctive about this burger besides its girth (they even shamelessly announce on the menu the use of Thousand Island dressing). What makes the burger worth eating is the excellent and formidable Del Monte hand-pressed and seasoned patty coupled with fresh veggies and tomato, and the house-made bun that was so good I could have eaten one alone without butter.

The fries were crispy and very good. The burger and fries came with a pepperoncini, which was an interesting touch, but that may have been a mistake—the menu calls for a pickle spear. The burger fries and iced tea come to $12.37 (compare that to other expensive burger scoot posts). Blue Prynt’s Half Pound Burger is worth checking out again.

Scooter Cannonball Run 2012
One last comment: The Scooter Cannonball Run 2012 began on Sunday April 22. This fun, cross-continental race has fascinated me since I became interested in scootering two years ago. Follow the eight-day race at the the official site: Scooter Cannonball Run 2012 or on FollowRide for graphical tracking using Google Maps. I dream of doing the Cannonball Run someday, but for now, even a trip to Auburn seems worlds away. The longest round trip I have logged to date is about 24 miles, and that hurt. Baby steps, Jocko, baby steps.

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