Every motorcycle that lived in our garage during my formative years was a Yamaha, all because of a guy called Joe Bellina, owner of Bellina Cycles in Hollister, California. He was pure old-school: honest, opinionated, hardworking and chain-smoked Camel straights. Dad became a fiercely loyal customer roughly 15 minutes after walking into the gritty little showroom. Seeing Joe's son Dave's 750cc Yamaha flat-tracker did it for me. He was an AMA Expert, blindingly fast, and always treated me like another guy who rode motorcycles instead of some customer's kid. In other words, he was a god. And when it came to setup, maintenance or modifications, my dad took Joe's advice as gospel. Inviolate. After all, Joe was the one-man sales and service department. He tuned Dave's 750 for the same sacrosanct dirt ovals that Kenny Roberts rode. Roberts, whose name was pronounced around our house with the same reverence as the President of the United States, rode a Yamaha. Case closed. Coming home on a Honda would've been roughly equivalent to shaving my head and showing up for Thanksgiving dinner in flowing orange Hare Krishna robes. My father would have had me deprogrammed or deported or worse.