Watch the Lights…

After four days of glad-handing, back-patting, man-hugging and reminiscing, here's my final score from Interbike:

Old friendships rekindled: 12

• Eddie Fiola
• Mike Dominguez
• Greg Hill
• Doug Olson
• Stu Dawkins
• Gary Ellis
• Brian Blyther
• Dave Parrick
• Elaine Enick
• Rich Bartlett
• Mike Redman
• Otis Bartholemew
• Lou Capparrelli

Current relationships fortified: 10

• Mike McHue
• Rich Vitiello
• Neil Merry
• Steve Crandall
• Leland Thurman
• Matt Bischoff
• Allister Worrell
• Brad McDonald
• Todd Toth
• Mark Losey

New acquaintances made: 3

• Colin and Chris from Seventies
• Scott from Sidewall
• Nick and Wayne from Action P&A

I participated in dozens of smaller bro downs, but these were the conversations that included the sweetest combination of  food, booze and/or laughs. 

Seeing my old friend Gary Ellis at the NORA Cup last week was the highlight of my 2008 trade show season. Sharing hugs and laughs with Greg Hill was equally fulfilling. Eddie Fiola looked no different this week than he did when it was my job to give him Dyno race pants in 1987. Mike McHue's sense of humor and eye for the absurd is uncanny, and seeing him always makes me laugh and think. 

I pride myself on my incongruous twin convictions to practicality and neophilia, so turning my back on 35 years of BMX nostalgia hasn't merely been easy, it's second nature. My knack for the kind of outrageous behavior that has kept me in the fringes of the BMX spotlight for 35 years is waning, but my love and admiration for the friends I've made along the way seems stronger than ever. I used to body surf nude in 40-passenger limos to leave in impression. Now I prefer buzz ranting with close friends. Turns out being a grownup isn't so bad, after all.

Neither, it seems, is being an endangered species on the BMX food chain. 

Thanks for being there, Lumberjack.


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