Monday, October 02, 2006

A Cuppa Joe With Gary

One of the biggest highlights of my trip to Lost Wages had to be before our show experience even began. And to think I should have missed it! You see, I wasn't even supposed to have been in Vegas on Tuesday afternoon. My flight had a scheduled layover in Atlanta for a few hours, but due to an astute Delta employee, I was put on an earlier flight which got me into Vegas before noon instead of by 5pm. as it was originally scheduled.

So, I'm in Vegas early. In fact; my flight out of Atlanta was on the same plane as Tim and Mike's. Since we all arrived together, we got settled in at the hotel and hit the Sands Convention Center for our badges. We poked around there a bit, looking in the doors and watching people set up. Tim actually was taking photos of the goings on until security shut us down. We decided that it might be a good time to eat, so we walked a few blocks to the mall on the Strip where we found a food court. After eating, we sat and chatted and thought about our plans for the next day when Mike says, "Hey, isn't that Gary Fisher? Going down the escalator?" Tim looked and so did I. We confirmed it was him. Tim then grabbed his camera and took off running. After a few minutes, Mikes phone rings. We both said in unison, "It's Tim." Sure enough, he tracked Gary Fisher down and told us to come down to where they were.

After procuring some Starbuck's black goodness, we sat down and chatted for a half hour to 45 minutes. Gary has some really interesting takes on drivetrains, commuter bikes, and 29"ers. It was a great, open discussion about bikes and philosophies on different aspects of cycling. I must say that my eyes got opened a bit by some of Gary's opinions on things. I'll relate some of those things as I post in upcoming days, but for now let's just say that Gary Fisher is a thinking man and is a fun guy to talk to. Gary, if you get wind of this post, I say "Thank you" and I am glad I got to Vegas early!

It was an odd thing as we walked away after saying our goodbyes that Mike, Tim, and I all agreed that this was probably the highlight of our trip, and we hadn't even been to the show yet! As it was, it probably has to be in the top three of the things that happened at Vegas for me. It's not that I got to talk to "Gary Fisher" the legend, or the head of a company, or anything like that. It was that I got to talk to Gary Fisher; a thinking man that is passionate about cycling and just happens to be in a very influential posistion in the industry. Say what you will about the past and his influence on the early days of mountain biking. This is a guy that is passionate about cycling today and is looking into the future, not resting on his laurels.

That's just the beginning of the trip! There's more, and I'll relate it all to you in the coming days. Stay tuned!

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