Viva Harley-Davidson: The Story Behind the Seventy-Two Sportster

Viva Harley-Davidson: The Story Behind the Seventy-Two SportsterPhotography by Wes DeBow

Having grown up in Southern California myself, the part of the trip that hit close to home was going to Mister Cartoon’s studio, a space very few people are invited into. He came up from nothing and took the world by storm with his art and style. He’s about to do it again with a new line of car and motorcycle care products called Sanctiond. Cartoon spoke candidly with us about his background and blew us away by providing transportation to a Dodgers’ baseball game in a parade of candy colored low riders with his fellow members of the Lifestyle Car Club, a privilege normally earned not given. I was truly honored. It took two hours to go three miles and we did it in true L.A. style. The Dodgers won the game with a walk-off homer in the 10th, capping a seemingly Hollywood-scripted evening.

The final day was spent at Fiesta Broadway, the world’s largest Cinco de Mayo celebration where half a million people descend on the streets of L.A. for all things Latino. There were plenty of murals, mariachi, Tijuana dogs, and family fun for the celebration. Harley-Davidson was also in attendence with their entire line-up to help support the community and inspire future Harlistas to grab life by the handlebars. Leonard Garcia, one of my favorite UFC fighters, popped up at the Harley-Davidson booth and was kind enough to pose forehead to forehead with me in a pre-fight staredown. Win or lose, Leonard has never had a boring fight. He is a warrior with the heart of a lion.

I came away from the weekend with an even greater appreciation for the Latino influence on the world around me and for Harley-Davidson’s 72. It is truly a bike that looks good from any angle. Metal flake, peanut tank, white walls, pin stripes, ape-hangers, glistening chrome, it’s all there. The 72 is more than just a frame thrown on a couple wheels. It's cultural roots are strategically infused throughout its sturdy frame, telling a story that leaves you wanting nothing more than some pavement and a horizon.

Related: Willie G.'s Last Stand - A Living Harley-Davidson Legacy

Related: The 50 Best Harley-Davidsons of All Time

Tags: harley-davidson, harley-davidson-72
blog comments powered by Disqus