Monday, September 19, 2011

2011 Interbike - Lights, Bikes, Smoke and Warpaint

I made it safely back from Interbike and Las Vegas, and all I can say is WOW. I didn't go in expecting much but it ended up being a wonderful experience. I met many "industry people" and made friends with some pretty cool and interesting folks. Having had bad experiences in Sin City before, I can honestly say my view has changed for the better ... but that's because of the company I had while there, and ample free beer. At 3 p.m. each day long lines started to form after the kegs were broken out, mostly by the bigger companies, and gentlemen in pseudo tuxedos tended bar. I don't believe much business was accomplished for the remainder of the day when this took place, but I do believe many friends were made.

The crew from Seattle's Second Ascent were there and I was fortunate enough catch a cab and to hang out with Isaac and Aaron after Cross Vegas where earlier I lucked into the VIP area - complete with free Sierra Nevada beer - thanks to Paul Tolme of Gates Carbon Drive Systems.

Isaac, Aaron and I ended up at one of the many casinos inside Treasure Island double fisting bottles of Coors and talking about bikes and our families. None of us gambled, as beer seemed to be a safer bet. We ended up at Gillies watching people ride the mechanical bull and laughing about the ridiculousness of Vegas and the no-holds-barred attitude of most who visit. People drink and smoke anywhere and everywhere, sex is offered on printed flyers, mini 'zines, on top of cabs, on billboards and by the people who fornicate for a living themselves. We collected "trading cards" of the women who, supposedly, would be on the other end of a phone call and ready to serve. These cards were passed out mostly by throngs of minorities desperate for commission - the cards ended up in the trash, of course, as we are all spoken for by our wives, but we didn't want to be rude by not taking them. The folks handing them out appeared to be desperate and probably worked for pennies a day. Besides, if I were ever disloyal to my wife I would hope it to be with the extremely talented girls in this band:

Vegas is fun ... for a couple of days.

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