Saturday, April 20, 2019

Minus Ten Review 2009-16

Gary Fisher grabbing a bite to eat at Sea Otter 2009
Sea Otter 2009. It was to be my last trip there, (so far), and it was by far the most fun trip there. My third year in a row of attending the event. I think back to that trip and find it so amazing even to this day.

I was not quite four years into blogging. Keep in mind that I was a "nobody", not even a blip on the radar, before this. No one had ever heard of me. Not that it matters one way or the other, but by 2009, I was going to Sea Otter, gabbing with Gary Fisher, and people I didn't even know were tapping me on the shoulder to tell me they appreciated what I was doing on the web. It's crazy. Still is.........I am so blown away by how blessed I have been in this gig called blogging, in the cycling industry, and from the standpoint of event promotion. I'm very thankful and I try to be mindful of my privilege. I will continue to strive to make all this a better thing than when I came into it. It is the least I can do to thank you, everyone, this industry.....

Anyway- Sea Otter. Yeah.... I was in cahoots with Arleigh Jenkins at this point. She had been a part of the recently closed up "Crooked Cog Network". She had convinced me that we could continue the work under a new banner dubbed "The Cyclistsite". (It still exists, but the URL was bought by another entity after we let it lapse) We made a press release and handed it out at Sea Otter. I saw her  maybe twice while I was there. Weird for someone who you might think of as a "partner", but I was in uncharted waters here. Tim Grahl had given me "Twenty Nine Inches" at this point, but that was a tenuous deal, and I was still stressed out about that. Added to that was the impending T.I.v5, and now this debut. I was pretty overwhelmed. Way over my head.

To compound matters after only a couple of months Arleigh sent me an e-mail telling me she was bailing out on the "Cyclistsite". So, I went through all of that stress only to be left standing at the alter, so to speak. Oh well...... Misplaced trust. It's a thing. Good thing Grannygear was willing to step in and take up the reins which kept that site going for a few years into the future.

The last view I had of Sea Otter taken as I left the venue in 2009. A foggy day made for dramatic lighting.
The Grahl deal came through, everything he promised, and that was a big surprise. A rental car, room, airfare to and from- it all was covered. I guess that was my severance package, or back pay, or was meant to assuage me for broken promises. I don't know. Probably never will. It was all a bit surreal. It reminds me how communication goes a long way in making relationships work right.

While I was there I got lost and found myself on the shore of the Pacific Ocean in Carmel By The Sea. I saw quaint cottages draped in vegetation, flowers in abundance, and tight, narrow lanes. I saw stuff that in Iowa would cost well below $100,000 but because it was California and on the ocean, it was probably multi-millions of dollars in real estate. Mind boggling. I ate at a McDonald's for breakfast three days in a row and saw the same two guys, old hippies, each morning having coffee. It was fun eavesdropping in on their memories of being beach bums. I drove through old Fort Ord every day on my way to the venue. It was all like a dream. Faded into the mists of time now......

I came back with a short stretch to T.I.v5. There was a LOT to get into order in a short two weeks time.

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