Aaron Elliott is Cole Foster's protege at renowned hot rod and chopper shop Salinas Boys in central California. Aaron's diminutive motorcycle started life as a '74 Honda CL360 before undergoing extensive refab by Aaron's capable hands. in 2011 Guy Bolton featured Aaron's cherry-red custom on the pages of Greasy Kulture magazine. Some weeks later photos from that story appeared on BikeEXIF. That's when sparks started to fly.
Regular readers of BikeEXIF.com know its currator and publisher Chris Hunter to be a savvy tastemaster on the subject of two-wheel transit. The same can't always be said of Mr. Hunter's readers, however. When they were published, both the feature in Greasy Kulture and BikeEXIF's followup made it clear that Aaron's little red riceburner was built purely for its creator's enjoyment. Nevertheless, that didn't stop several keyboard commandos from sharing their thoughts on this pint-sized bobber.
A bloke named Elven was the most vocal in his disdain. "With no suspension, no lights and rubbish old tyres, where would you ride it? Where could anyone ride it legally?" Chris Hunter and others were quick to respond in Aaron's defense, but British cyber bully Elven persisted. "I build my own bikes to ride fast on mountain roads… (what a) waste of good aluminum." Thanks for weighing in, Elven.
Frequent readers of this humble site know I loathe the venomous blathering of douchebags like Elven. Spirited debate is one thing, and we support anyone who engages in a respectful fashion. To brazenly state personal opinion as rote fact is another matter entirely. Unfortunately, cyberspace's black hole of anonymity has convinced millions that heavy-handed rhetoric passes as civil discourse. It doesn't, and comments like Elven's prove my point.
In the age of social media, man's sense of entitlement seems to have grown at a rate even faster than the advancement of processing speed. Everyone—this writer included—has popped off on a Facebook wall, comment box or message board. Purging bile is human nature, like shitting one's pants after binge drinking. Unlike a hangover, however, digital shit-talking leaves a poop stain that stinks forever.
Just ask Elven.