Re: [CR]The Czech uprising, The Space Program, and Schwinn Paramounts . . . What exactly is the connection ?

(Example: Books:Ron Kitching)

Date: Fri, 24 Feb 2006 14:09:53 -0800 (PST)
From: Jerome & Elizabeth Moos <>
Subject: Re: [CR]The Czech uprising, The Space Program, and Schwinn Paramounts . . . What exactly is the connection ?
In-Reply-To: <000901c6398a$ac1c1730$0c0110ac@D7FBDM41>

Let's not be too harsh on Emanuel. Even though I own four Paramounts, I accept his earlier point that Americans' interest in Paramounts is parochial. It's true, I don't notice a lot of interest in them from non-US collectors. But parochial though it may be, I think there are good reasons for the American fondness for Paramounts, most of which you list below.

Some things are just hard to understand from the outside, and I think Emanuel's ideas about the nature of Schwinn would be very easy to form seeing events from the Canadian perspective. I'm sure American cyclists have similarly incomplete understanding of the British, Italian and French bike industries (actually, I'm not sure even the French understand the French bike industry).

So let's allow our Canadian neighbors their point of view, even if we don't think it fully informed. God knows, we Americans are sometimes guilty of expressing uninformed opinions about the rest of the world.


Jerry Moos Big Spring, TX wrote: Emanuel Lowi recently posted this gem in response to the chrome Schwinn Paramount that sold for a relatively high price on Ebay recently :
>Date: Fri, 24 Feb 2006 13:31:57 -0500 (EST)
>Another popular cycle marque around here in the early
>70s was Favorit, a Czech maker.
>While most of their cycles were rather ordinary 10
>speed tourer/racer style, their high end racing bikes
>were made with their own butted tubing and a number of
>their own components. I still see them around town, 30
>years later.
>Speaking of history, as the Czechs had just finished
>rebelling against the Soviets a few years earlier,
>frankly I am more impressed with their efforts at high
>end cycle manufacture than I am with a huge company
>like Schwinn, in a USA that was sending landing
>modules to the Moon at the same time as building
>Emanuel Lowi
>Montreal, Quebec

Now just what in the hell besides an extreme case of SNOBBISHNESS would cause someone to link two completely unrelated 20th century historical events to an unconnected and decidedly medium-sized bicycle manufacturer located in Chicago ?

Perhaps the same ignorance that would refer to Schwinn as "huge", underlies Mr. Lowi's shallow attempt to somehow impugn the Paramount as unsophisticated and lacking (in exactly what?) -compared to the "heroic" efforts at producing those oh-so-wonderful Favorits that he so loves and admires.

You want heroic ? How about a company whose products were overwhelmingly aimed at kids and teenagers deciding that they would produce a top-quality ADULT bicycle that no doubt lost them money for years and years. How about a company that put up prizes and supplied frames/bikes for how many US Olympic teams during the "dark ages" of US adult cycling ? A company that employed "bike bum" racers in the off-season. Who else did that sort of thing at the time ? Let's not even talk about the help they gave to the LAW . . .

Schwinn wasn't perfect, but they did many unheralded good things that in no way could be justified in a pure bottom-line business sense - but I feel they did them anyway because they had a sense of pride and a desire to try and rekindle adult interest in bicycling.

Somewhere Keith Kingbay (MGRHS) et al, could sit you down bub and make you realize the foolishness behind your thinking. All I can do is point out what I detect as a sour and snobby attitude that should have no place on this list.

Michael Fabian
San Francisco