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The Upside of Turbulence by Donald Sull

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5.

MIND THE GAP

Forty members of the Black Rebel Motorcycle Club—all clad in identical black leather jackets emblazoned with a skull over crossed pistons—maintained a tight formation as they rode their British-made Triumph 650s into a small California town. Sherriff Harry Bleeker prepared for trouble, while his brother Frank, who owned the town’s bar, prepared for business and put more beer on ice. Both men were right. Within the span of a few hours, Johnny Strabler, the taciturn leader of the Black Rebels, organized a drag race down the town’s main road, hit on the sheriff’s daughter, and picked a fight with Chino, the leader of the Beatles, a rival club whose members rode Harley-Davidsons.

The fight escalated when a local, frustrated by ...

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