Greetings campers and drowned rat wannabes
Hey, I don't have to take this e-abuse from my CR pals. I have people standing in line waiting to abuse me, in person. I at least offered my roommates earplugs, even if only to tune out the unanticipated Irish Wolfhound convention in the motel. (And people think WE'RE weird). Don't leave home without them.
Mostly just a fun day with the Northeastern bike kooks. You know who you are, and it was great to get out to play with y'all again, and laugh at each other's appalling taste in bike stuff. Bikes of interest were all too small or too tall, and the guy with the Roberts tourer wouldn't separate the Phil Wood pedals from the total assembly. Ya just know that whoever buys that bike will go clipless. And I know better than to expect to find anything at a swap once that item becomes a critical need and gets underlined in red on the shopping list, so mostly just walked around playing with other people's junque, and buying more stuff I'll never use, and off-topic stuff that I'll just abuse and wear out without mention.
Yeah, so it rained a little. Looked like a larger crowd than at the sunny spring swap. And it's not like the State Police had to come around and run everybody out of town like they did a few years back as T-town and eastern PA were going underwater. Any booth with raingear made some quick sales. Maybe next time I'll bring a roll of clear sheet plastic to sell to unprepared vendors. Also noticed some interesting plastic trash bag fashion statements during the day. Favorite was the guy who made a Robin Hood / Dennis Moore style hat by carefully folding up a heavy duty Beacon cycles shopping bag. A pheasant feather would have been a nice finishing touch. However, he did not seem to be a "merry" man.
Ongoing quest for the day, after finally reconnecting with my "lost" pal Bruce (non-CR, but Raleigh Competition and Atlantis owner) early in the afternoon, was a search for cheap chainrings for both of us. In past years there was always a tent with several boxes full of them. But not this year, not now that we actually needed some. But very late in the day, on our way out, we did finally accidentally find a small box of chainrings to dig through. $5 per ring, new or new enough. Found enough to keep us ignoring routine drivetrain maintenance for another couple years. Bruce is finally starting to understand why I come to the swaps, but still naive enough to think he's going to find three matching rings, in the sizes and bolt patterns he wants, in the same box! (and he did, too!!. I fear that's going to raise his expectations to an unrealistic level.). Was startled to unearth a couple new triplizer rings in that box. 130/74, 135/74, probably TA just guessing from the hardware that looks very similar to Zephyr bolts. Definitely not Merz or Willow. Tom Hayes wasn't around to retaliate with a well deserved "what the heck are you going to do with THOSE?!", but I might find a use for them someday (Uncharacteristically optimistic, especially for a guy who's fleet and stash of spares consists of 144 doubles and 110/74 triples). But for $5, I can afford to be wrong. Possible swap fodder. And as we bagged up our toothed loot, the dudes at the table asked "So like, when does the swap officially end?" It was hard not to laugh out loud. "Uhhh, like, about an hour ago guys. You're free to go."
Post swap personal moment, back in the car, putting on warm DRY socks, shoes, and polartec (Mmmmmm, Muppet fur) for the long drive home. Ohhhhhh yeahhhhhhhhhhhh. A serious swapper comes prepared for everything.
How many days til Westminster? Larry "two breaths per minute, whether I need them or not" Osborn Bruceton Chills, WV