Friday, March 21, 2014

NAHBS 2014 Part 2 - the people

I thought I was a terrible photographer - but when you hand your camera to a stranger, you never know what's going to happen. So some of these photos are terrible, but they're all we've got folks. Above you see yours truly between Mike Deme of Adventure Cyclist and the man, the myth, the legend, Patrick O'Grady. He's the one responsible for the "Old Guys who get fat in winter" cartoons and Friday's Foaming Rant among others. These two kindly put up with me, letting me join them for breakfast and dinner. It would have been a far less enjoyable experience had they not let me hang around with them. Thanks guys!

While we're on the subject of nice guys, here's Campagnolo's Dan Large, their technical wizard. Besides being a nice guy, he's into MOTOGP too. These are the kind of folks you want to help, making an "Official Supplier" relationship like we have better when it can be (sort of) a two-way street. 

Next we have Dario Pegoretti, kind of a rock star when it comes to frame builders as you'll see here. He was blabbing away above when I called out "Maestro, sorride per favore" (Master, a smile please) as I aimed the lens through the triangle of the frame. He looked up more surprised than anything as you can (I hope) see. With a decent photographer it could have been a great photo I think.

The guy is almost always surrounded by others, it's hard to get a word or a second of his time.

But on Sunday morning, he was wandering the aisles of the show, so I barged into the conversation he was having, again catching his attention with some badly-accented Italian and got him to pose for this badly out-of-focus photo. If you watch the video, you'll understand why this guy is a hero. He used to be a "builder of trust" to a lot of pros, including that Spanish guy who won that big race in France a few times, but when steel went out of fashion in the pro peloton, he remade his operation to satisfy a public hungry for something still made with passion, rather than something cranked out in volume solely for profit. He certainly fits into that "larger than life" category of human beings!

Finally, we have the boys at Abbey Bike Tools. If you're a tool-junkie like Larry, you'll appreciate what these guys do. In a world full of junky, disposable, "use it once" tools these guys craft tools you want to buy. They also work closely with guys like Dan Large to make sure their stuff functions perfectly, with a specific tool for every task. Needless to say I came home with one of their newly released hanger alignment tools! They also make a great cassette lockring tool, one that lets you skip (in most cases) removing the skewer nut just to tighten the lockring.

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