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   Fifth Annual DESMO Holiday Party was held at Dave & Busters in the Palisades Centre Mall in Nyack, NY on Saturday, December 10, 2005.
   Click here for pictures from the event.

Coverage of the Feast by Marco McCormick, Poet Laureate

   For DESMO members, Saturday December 10th, 2005 will remain as heralded as the Track Day, the Barbeque and Bike Show, or the day Paul's 916 was set upon by a seven-foot tar python off Bear Mountain Bridge. If you weren't at this year's DESMO Christmas Party, you'd best not read further. There was so much fun, so much swag(ger), and such great fellowship that if you missed it you'll likely spend the winter dying of lonesomeness. If you have a strong constitution, though, you may merely be hospitalized for a spell and then come out in the spring knowing better than to ever pass by such an event again.

   The adventure began in the car park of the Palisades Mall. Once we got our cars tucked safely between the mountains of frozen slag and navigated the six hundred acres of wet and spotty tarmac, straight away another adventure loomed up: We had to find Dave and Buster's. But no hurdle was enough to turn back the experienced Ducati rider.

   Arriving at the game-theme restaurant, we saw, in order, friends, good friends, draught beer, people we thought we ought very well recognize, bottled beer, two beautiful 2006 Ducatis on display courtesy of Cliff's—friends we hadn't yet made, various glasses of beer, and Ben perched up on the edge of the stage eying the pile much as a hen might her brood. God, it was good to feel so at home.

   The new machines drew a great many of us to the stage. The remaining ninety percent were content to be fixtures at the bar. From up there, though, there was a better view of Wei's incredible video of celebrated motorcycle moments of 2005 (for sale just in time for the holidays) as it spun itself out on a gigantic screen behind the display Ducatis. What a backdrop! The video was so good that for the first hour of the party conversations had a way of flagging, drifting off to prolonged silences, or just plain getting abandoned as the person you thought was listening to your most embellished accounts of road worthiness stared off at the screen. Dez did this to everyone enough times to make most of us think we needed to rework our material, or that he had chanced upon the third rail on the way over and wasn't entirely himself.

   Ah, dinner. On a bounty of chafing dishes was all fashion of food, some murky, some not so. The excellent manners of the DESMO members assured there would be no unsightly leftovers. The only bewildering moment came when Martin, having recently sold his 900ss and clearly grief stricken, tried to filch a sterno can from beneath the steaming comestibles and squeeze its contents into a cup. Irene saved him from going blind, but not before falling down twice herself, once on the left, once on the right.

   The highlight of the evening came when Jon Slocum and Hannah took turns at the mike to award prizes and raffle off the swag amidst howls and guffaws. After dinner, people complained their cheeks hurt from smiling so hugely and laughing too much. And what was the final score? There were too many to list, but notable amongst the winners were Nick, who bought his first road bike this past season and now sports a Ducati jacket to go with both his Monster and race-ready 748. Lew went home with an FBF Hawaiian shirt that is as beautiful as it is frankly embarrassing. Many won T-shirts and trinkets, but congratulations to Jeff Lewis for going home the grand prize, a Keith Code day of his choice. To more enjoy some of the flavor of this special event, go to the photo gallery. Yes, it's true most of us look stupid, but happy people generally do.

   Special thanks to everyone who helped make this happen, and to our generous sponsors, all of whom contributed so much to make the 2005 DESMO Christmas Party such a success.

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