purple motorcycle

This small-scale custom bike fit him perfectly.

One of the most enduring images of Prince is the Purple Rain album cover and movie poster showing him astride a purple motorcycle. With billowing smoke, dramatic backlighting and heroic upward angle, Prince and his tricked-out ride make for a truly indelible image.

Surely Prince’s badass bike was some monstrous Harley, right? While that was probably the perception of many fans, Prince actually rode a motorcycle as diminutive as the musical icon himself. The bike was actually a customized Honda CM400A twin-cylinder starter bike that was notable for its low seat height and its automatic two-speed transmission that absolved His Purpleness of having to squeeze a clutch lever.

He kitted out the bike with a classic ’70s Vetter Windjammer fairing and a seat with pink velour inserts. Most motorcyclists would be dismissive of such a small-scaled machine, but Prince’s ride fit the five-foot-two pop god perfectly.

what if the boys at the 4077th weren’t doctors? what if they got drafted as soldiers just like everyone else?

imagine, Hawkeye Pierce as the son of a fisherman from Maine, who worked in the local drugstore to pay his way towards becoming an English teacher, who taught at the town’s tiny schoolhouse until the day he got his draft card.

John McIntyre the lawyer, trying to argue his way out of leaving his wife and children, and ending up on the front lines just the same.

part-time auto mechanic, part-time hobbyist BJ Hunnicutt, being sent to work on sherman tanks and fire a gun in his spare time.

Frank Burns, failed actor, successful accountant, clinging to his bible and ultimately proving too cowardly and neurotic to be anywhere near the front.

Sherman Potter, just barely avoiding the draft and being left at home to continue being the best veterinarian in Hannibal, Missouri. 

and Henry Blake, a family man who managed to get an early retirement from his job as a salesman, unable to believe that he got drafted, of all people, struggling to make sense of his situation.