Here's what you need for cred on base:
Airborne! Although the Italians took the idea over, the scooter is an American invention.
I'd still get a GS850G if you can find a good one. Although much has been made of the weak stator/voltage regulator, it's a relatively simple fix if you can swing a wrench. The hammer-reliability of the roller-bearing Suzuki bottom end coupled with the excellent shaft-drive and tranny makes the bike a winner. It's also a remarkably good-looking bike in motion. It looks somewhat stodgy parked, but is tall and lean in motion. You get plenty of glad waves riding one.
I love shafties, and own four right now. I love my '95 K75 BMW. It's a great bike, but is hampered to some degree by the dry-clutch transmission. I know why BMW designed the bike the way they did, but shifting between certain gears requires thought. I've also owned an R90/6 and an R80, which were wonderful, as long as you accepted the fact that when you were tired at the end of the day, you'd blow a shift and make an ass of yourself in front of God and everyone.
The shaft-driven Honda tranny is either good or bad. My 86 Wing whines and groans, which I hear is typical of the breed. My '90 PC 800 is a smooth shifter, and one of the best bikes for two-up riding I've ever seen. It comes with a calendar rather than a speedo.