Last year I got to go to a Shimano Special Invitation gig and was told all about the XT DynaSys 10 speed stuff, along with XTR, months before it was released to the public. Then they gave me an XT DynaSys group to play with. All "Secret Agent Man" like. In fact, I had to sign a non-disclosure agreement to even attend the meeting. Like if I said anything early, a special ninja agent would blow a poison dart into my neck, and it'd be curtains for me.
But I didn't press the issue, I'll tell ya that much! Anywho, they did another one of these deals again yesterday up in the Twin Cities at Theo Wirth Park. I'd never been there, so that was cool to find where that place is at.
Oh yeah.......I had to sign another Non-Disclosure Agreement, so..........
I'll talk about the stuff I can talk about. The trip up was okay until I got to Owatonna. Man! There are certain places where oddities happen on Earth. You know- para-normal activity, places where gravity doesn't work, Area 51, and Washington D.C. Things where the normal fabric of life is unraveled and up is down, black is white.
Owatonna, Minnesota is such a place in terms of weather and its being bad. once I crested the hill going into town from the south, there was ice all over the sides of the road, it was spritzing rain, and the roadway looked shiny. Great! Just great. Everything was okay though, and once past Faribault, it was clear sailing once more.
I had to go to Theo Wirth, as I said, and having never been there before, I had no idea where to go, since a "certain someone that shall go un-named" didn't forward me the official invite. Regardless, I found it via the wonders of the inner-webs and discovered it was a golf course with a huge clubhouse that was where the event was taking place. And I was only 5 minutes late, annnd....the meeting hadn't started yet. Fashionably late? Well, I didn't plan it that way, but......
Now there were some media embargoes that were spoken of and secret stuff was shared. But.....not everything was secret! There was the much ballyhooed cross specific crank and brakes, and some 11 speed Afine talk. Nothing earth shattering there, but it is cool to see Shimano doing the CX stuff, as it will make more cross bikes available out there in 2012, I'm sure.
Yeah.......the really cool stuff was secret.
Then I had to get home. 4pm. Rush hour in the TC. Good thing I know some side street action! Bonus for riding and driving the Twin Cities as much as I have, and for paying attention while doing so! I avoided the bumper to bumper madness, and got out of there in great shape, only to face sideways rain and horrendous winds all the way home. It was definitely one of the worst drives I have been involved in for years. I narrowly missed getting wrecked by a semi-tractor/trailer that was spewing so much water into the wind behind him that I nearly went blindly under his trailer wheels at 60mph. Not cool! Then there was that gust of wind that got my truck sideways. Sideways! At speed. Crazy stuff, and I was super glad to get home unscathed.
Anyway, what would all the secret stuff be without some drama and adventure, right?