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Thursday, April 30, 2015

"Victims. Aren't we all" _Brandon Lee as Eric Draven, "The Crow"

By about closing yesterday I came to a startling discovery..
I finished everything!
Repairs, newbies, even the last few remaining bikes out back, either scrapped out, or rebuilt and the sudden, awful, sinking feeling set in, that today, I would be faced with doing...
Well, thankfully, as I started my morning off with a brisk sweeping, cleaning my bay (YUCK!), reorganizing the wheel rack (AGAIN!) and smartening up by making set's to hang in front of the racks so as to relieve some of the precarious "Stacking", and of course, rotating the bike stock I was relieved to pick up a sweet, classic Peugeot Hybrid.  She needs some work, but HEY it beats the heck out of having to sort through the "left overs!' 
Happy Pant's Dance!
As mentioned, we put out a total of five newbies yesterday, with pics of three below.  The other two are simple kiddo rides, not having that "umph" for a pic! 
As well, we sent two to a new home yesterday.  Well, that is to say, our new friends from the UK used a credit card over the phone to retain them for this weekend when they arrive.  On the vacation plan, we'll be getting them back n a couple weeks, anyway. It was during this phone call, when I jokingly stated that as part of the deal he had to bring me a "Top Gear" T-Shirt from England, he informed me that would be difficult as the show had been axed!
OK, so here's my diatribe on this one!  If you're not in the know on this, let me just explain that "Top Gear" is a Fact Based Reality show, based in England that is THE most popular show, All...Over...The....World! 
This show has been around for 38 years, and became meteoric after it's re-launch in 2002, due specifically to it's host's Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond and James May.  Their irreverent style, dry British humor and their propensity to insult and poke fun at just about EVERY class of people,  ethnicity and body politic (not to mention, something I found particularly humorous, cyclists)
Apparently, their main presenter and Producer Jeremy Clarkson, who is NO stranger to controversy,  got into a fight and hit another producer.  Granted, it was announced last year, that the trio would be most likely calling it quits after another three seasons, but this "fracas" sounded the death knell a tad bit sooner.  The show, and it's remaining three episodes were pulled from the BBC's line up, and as of yet, I can find no solid Intel as to the future of the show.  I can only assume, it will return in some form or fashion, but the trio that held the reigns, and took this show to SUCH limits, will be sorely missed!  Given the attempts that have been made to reproduce the show in other countries (the US included) have been opaque, sickly bastard children.  I can't say as I hold out much hope!
And, speaking of ugly offspring...
Angi informed me the other day that there were plans to "reboot" the "Crow" movie! suck!
Isn't it bad enough that you are putting someone else behind the Joker paint, a blatant spit in the eye to the masterful legacy of Heath Ledgers perfect interpretation, and unfortunate subsequent demise, but NOW you're going to deface the memory of Brandon Lee!?!
A bit of background:  the original movie, based on the graphic novel of the same name, is a dark and mournful tale of revenge.  Eric Draven, a Goth Rocker and his fiancé are attacked in their home by a group of street thugs.  Eric is killed, his bride-to-be, defiled and then died from her wounds.  One year later, Eric's love for his lady is so great, he is allowed to return from the dead to enact his revenge on those who killed them.  Here's the thing.  Were this only a reboot of just another good movie, it would be one thing, but Brandon Lee (son of the great Bruce Lee) was killed during the filming!  As the production was on a tight schedule, it was reported that the prop guns (real guns with blanks) had not been "properly" cleaned between takes, and as it turns out, a piece of shell casing hit Brandon, and he later died of his injuries.  More superstitious folks, blame his death on the fabled "Lee Family Curse", but in reality, it was an accident with a little bit of carelessness to help it along. The point is, it was bad enough, they made sequels to the original (not to mention a bloody TV series), but NOW, they're "going back to formula!"  
It was a good movie.  No, a GREAT movie!  And, of course, the only thing Hollywood execs see are dollar signs! STOP tampering with what has been done well. I'm sure there are a lot of decent ideas or scripts flashing across desks, why not take a chance and give us something new and exciting, with the same heart, not defiling the original for the all powerful opening weekend returns!  PAH-LEASE!!
I'm gonna git a move on, as these thoughts are making me a tad bit peeved!

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ONLY $80.00!!
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ONLY $35.00!!
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ONLY $75.00!!

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

“Unseen in the background, Fate was quietly slipping lead into the boxing-glove.” -P.G. Wodehouse

OK, so forgive me for beaming.  I know the whole world has shrunk somewhat with the advent of the Internet and such, but I still get a REAL kick out of folks from overseas contacting us when they're planning a trip to the Colonies!  And specifically from reading the Blog!  We've been visited by dignitaries from Taiwan, professional baseball players from South America, Flower Dealers from Cuba, and many other fine folks from just about every country out there (I love being visited from France, Russia and Ireland as I could listen to those accent ALL day!) .  Not to shabby for some common folk from up North! 
Well, in that vein, got a call from UK yesterday (which I missed 'cause I had the grinder going and couldn't hear the bloody phone!) and a very fine talkin' gent and family are visiting here for a couple weeks and are interested in taking advantage of the Vacation plan.  I know, there are businesses out there that get visited by just about every country all the time, and it may not seem a big deal, but for me, personally, it's really an honor to think our little shop is of interest to folks from all over the world! 
I've lived a very secluded life!
(but in my email to him, I did let him know I'll give him a discount if he brings me an official "Top Gear" T-shirt!  Almost like being there!
Yesterday was...ugh.  The rains were heavy in the AM, and unfortunately had to leave Suzanne with Angi, as she does not do very well in the rain, and I needed to make a mad dash for the shop and try and stay as dry as possible.
I failed.
Hit the door drenched and of course, the day before having been very humid, the AC was left on high!
Recovering from that, got to work on a few repairs from the day before, then on to paperwork.
As you could surmise from the length of the entry from yesterday, I spent some time at the 'puter.  The writing part doesn't take to long, it's the downloading of the pictures that's a REAL BI.....pain!  Forever being cursed with electronic equipment that doesn't work, I can no longer upload directly from my phone, but have to email them to myself (yahoo...takes for bloody EVER!) then, I have to post them, one at a time, to one of my Craigslist ad's, THEN have to copy and paste them to our Blog.  Do NOT ask me why, but it's the only way it works!  VERY time consuming!  ANYWAY!  Once that was finished I went to the corner store to get supplies for the day, and what should happen?  I pay with a twenty and my change is...$6.66!!
OH BOY!  NOT a good Omen!
Thankfully, the clerk, obviously being a tad superstitious himself, looked a tad wide eyed at the amount, and gave me back $6.65!  THANK YOU!
Unfortunately the gesture did not seem to abate the curse!  As shortly after arriving back in the shop, I got a call from Angi.
Seems. when Elijah had run an errand to the store for her, upon his return, he left his bike outside...
Yep.  You know where I'm going with this.
Suzanne, was present and began to bark and growl at the door, unfortunately Angi assumed she was spurred to attention by the many squirrels who visit the tree outside of our house, so she paid no heed.  Shortly thereafter, Elijah discovered it gone.  Then, of course, we had the Police visit, take the obligatory report, which I'm sure will be unceremoniously filed away and forgotten.  Now, of course, this happens on the day Elijah is to start orientation at his new job, that he had to be at in an hour.  It took me talking to his manager to confirm that yes, in fact, his bike was stolen and no he was not trying to ditch.  As if that wasn't enough....
As I was completing the phone call back to him, to inform him I spoke with his manager, the lights at the shop went out!
For a moment I sat in darkness saying to myself "WHAT THE HEY!?!" then I heard movement in the back.
Seems I once again screwed something up!  Turns out when I paid the bill a couple weeks back, I paid the WRONG amount and was $80.00 short!  UGH!  So, we were in the dark for about an hour, after paying up!
OH well, guess I have to look at the bright side, it was only an hour and Elijah was able to make it to orientation at McDonalds. 
Don't get me started.
Robin Williams had a great line for that (and I paraphrase) "you have two visions of your child's future.  One is "I'd like to thank the Nobel Academy..." and the other is "would you like fries with that?"
*shaking my head*
As I only ended up getting about an hour and a half to really work yesterday I only got about half way through a ladies six speed cruiser rebuild, and will be getting back to it post haste.  Then a couple repairs, and put together that Specialized 29er, as it goes to it's new home this afternoon. 
We sent the little BMX mini racer home with a really excited young lad, and a father willing to give him what he wanted.  We love parents like that!
OKAY, gonna try and get at it! 
See y'all soon!! 

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

“After a good dinner one can forgive anybody, even one's own relations.” -Oscar Wilde

OK, so...why didn't anyone tell me this stuff EXISTED!?!?
I can only assume that everyone out there has their own favorite kinds of foods, or those that hold memories of youth, or special occasions.  I myself, have been fortunate enough in my life to be exposed to Epicurean delights that provide both for me, as well!  My earliest memories being that of my Mothers Molasses cookies, possessing fond memories of the assuredness of home .  The delight of a rare treat of Maple Candy (not the hard stuff, but the soft little piece of  maple sugar, delightfully molded into shapes of maple leaves or the profile of the "Old Man In The Mountain") when my family and I would go on the rare outings.  As I grew older, I was occasionally treated to the even more scarce opportunity to dine with the family at the "1686 House" in Kingston NH, where I would ALWAYS dine on a fresh batch of marinated mushrooms and (PETA forgive me) Veal Parmesan!  Then, after meeting my beloved, I gained an entirely new appreciation for Kraft Macaroni and cheese, with Philly's cream cheese.  Suffice to say, the significance of this dish, and it's true meaning, is shared between Angela and I alone. As Angela had grown up in a home with a Southern Mother, her level of exposer to a myriad of incredible recipes far surpassed my own, limited pallet, and I was blessed to have her reproduce some for me!  Her pearled onions topping the list, with her amazing Santa Fe Chicken running a VERY close second!  Not only that, but I have her to thank for introducing me to something I always squirmed away from, Sushi.  Oh, all the years I lost having refused to try THE perfect food!  And by extension, the euphoric masterpiece of Wasabi! 
But, perhaps it was Demeter herself, who withheld the discovery of this most wonderful of creations until my adult taste buds had matured enough to fully appreciate. 
As yesterday was the first day of our new summer hours, are normal evening routine was shunted a tad askew, and we had neglected the dinner menu.  As it was pushing seven O'clock, when Angi and I had asked the question "What do you want to do for dinner".  A normal, almost comedic duet, where we both press each other to make the final declaration as to what we will be dining on.  As it was too late to secure and cook anything, in order to assure adherence to bedtime schedules, we opted for "Sandwich Night".  Now here is where Providence stepped in.  Last week, some of our shop friends were returning to Canada, and had donated the contents of their refrigerator and cabinetry to the family.  I brought the large box home, hardly poking through it, and Elijah put the contents away.  As I was helping Angela finish up meal prep after my quick shower, we were down to our plates.  Roast Beef and Swiss on Onion bulky.  I prepared hers, with the prerequisite mayo on one slice, mustard on the other, and she went to the table.  As I set about preparing mine, I went to the fridge to get my mustard (the zest of Guldens as opposed to the rather bland French's).  With all the condiments littering our fridge (6 half used jars of Mayo, 3 of Mustard, and 4 of ketchup) I had to dig for my lone jar, and happened to have to move aside an unfamiliar one to get to it.  As I held this strange sauce in my hand, I absent mindedly denoted the name...
"zesty horseradish mayonnaise"!
Zesty, hunh?  Lets give that a sniff! 
"Ohhhhhhh....that's GOOOOOD!!"
With a healthy dollop on my creation I sat at the table, dug in and Immediately discovered what the food in Heaven must taste like!  Perhaps, it was this culinary masterpiece that inspired many to write of the dangers of Humans eating "Fairy Food", as the moment they took one bite, they would become enchanted and enslaved by it. 
Oh yea, I am SOOOO enslaved!
OK, on to other things! 
I have to rectify an oversight from yesterday, as I failed to send a "Shout Out" to a fine gent from up in New Port Richey.  We text back and forth on Sunday, as he had a bevy of old rides littering his yard, and wanted to know if we were interested in them and can we come there and grab 'em.  Unfortunately, as we are NOT car drivers, we had no way to get there.  Apparently, this dedication to the life style impressed him enough that he loaded up all the goodies and brought them down for a donation!  THANK YOU SIR!  Several of them were, sadly, beyond help but we did manage to salvage the majority of parts.  One, however, a sweet vintage Raleigh Capri Road Bike, was WELL worth the effort to rebuild.  With original paint that was in real sharp shape, we took the majority of parts off the Fuji we had had donated from the day before (all alloy Diacomp), a replacement set of alloy 700's and turned it into a SWEET five speed!  Why a five speed?  Well, I thought of going single, but we've been doing a lot of those lately, and I really like the cool looking thumb shifters, and wanted to use at least one!  Check this peach out below, along with the Specialized Hard Rock we finished up!  Speaking of which!
As promised, our newest pet project is done and done!  As a new twist we're going to give away a few trade secrets!  So, without further preamble, let's jump right into it! 
First up,  the "before" condition of this sweet old Specialized!!

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Sorry for the first Pic being a tad bit fuzzy, but the other pics clearly show the level of wear and decay this poor soul endured.  Denoting the close up of each section, you'll see several areas of surface rust, pitting, chips and general ICK!  Breaking out the tools, we do with the tear down!

next step is to thoroughly clean the frame.  You want to be able to differentiate between what is simply dirt and grime, and what you'll have to tackle a little more aggressively.  We do this simply by spraying the ride down first with a healthy dose of PB Blaster, then while it's still lubed up, hit it from top to bottom with a common green pot scrubber.  Here's what were up against.

After this, we hit her with some 409 to brake up left over lube and grease, and wipe it down first with some Lysol Degreaser wipes, then paper towels and finally using the air compressor, dry it all off.

Now, we know where we are going to have to touch up the paint.  I'll take this moment to comment on just how much I LOVE black bikes!  They are, by far, the simplest to touch up.  First, taking some 80 grit, you lightly buff out any rough patches, smooth out pitting, and get rusty areas down close to bare metal.  Once you're satisfied it's smooth to the touch (no pock marks or ridges in the sanded areas) you go back over with a finer grit to really smoothen it all out.  In the case of this ride, I want to do whatever I can to retain all the original graphics.  And don't worry too much when you are using the finer grit, you can actually make a few light passes over them, if necessary, to get any imperfections in their areas if need be. 

Here's where it get a wee bit tricky.  Set yourself up with the following: some mineral spirits and a thin rag, or in our case, more Lysol wipes,  wringing out as much of the cleaner as we can.

 We use automotive FLAT black paint to do the touch ups (this one helps to retard rust).  We use the flat, because it's easier to control, and in the case of most of the paint finishes on bikes, as they age and weather the paint oxidizes and fades.  So the original gloss black, aint so glossy anymore!  Using a gloss black paint, is heavier, and is prone to alligator peeling or thigh cheese, and even after the final clear coats, will NOT blend well!!

It takes a little bit of practice, but you'll learn how to mist the paint, so there are no real obvious "stop" marks, where your spray ends.  Holding the can about 12 inches away from where your aiming at first, but some close, quick swipes in tight areas.  Have no fear, that's what the Mineral Spirits and wipes are for! 

On this ride, some of the nastier patches were real close to the graphics on the bottom tubes, so we pass over with the paint in light dustings, not wanting to build up to thick a layer, until it is thoroughly coated.  Don't worry about overspray at this point, as we're going to deal with it shortly.  Once everything is coated, take your CLEAN cloth or wipe and give it a little mineral spirits.  It's actually better to alloy the paint a few minuets to set, almost dry, before you do overspray clean up.  If you do so while the paints really wet, it's going to create a bead, and really look like crap.  Gently rubbing the graphics, (gentle is IMPORTANT, as a more aggressive wipe, while even on a dryer paint line, can create the aforementioned bead) until the overspray is cleaned. 

You will, more then likely, get this halo, but don't worry, we take care of that in a second.

Give the ride a good once over, because if you missed anything, going back after you clear coat it, can be a real pain to fix!   I wait until the paint is dry, wipe it down again with a wipe (the mild abrasive quality of the wipes is not unlike a final wet sanding with a fine grit paper) then, drying it with the compressor I'm ready for a final clear coat.  We use a high gloss Acrylic clear coat, that happily blends the differing shades of black almost perfectly!!

NOW!  On to the build!!
During all the wait time on the painting process, I use that time to get the parts ready!  On this beast, the majority of the components were just TOO far gone!  Once rust has permeated the metal, on say, a derailleur or brake caliper, it's scrap.  We don't want to take the chance the metal is weakened as it will most like give when the rider is ten miles from home!  SO, we opt to deck it out with as close to original parts as we can muster.  Of course, NEW cables and housings, along with a fresh set of tubes, but as luck would have it, the original owner had already decked it out, recently, with a nice set of meaty Specialized 26 X 2.25 tires, so we stuck with them.  The original wheel set MAY be salvageable, but in the interest of completing the project, relatively quickly, I stuck on a real sweet set of classic Araya alloy rims!  Also, had a choice set of Shimano Alivio derailleurs, that really compliment the ride.  The one, slight, alteration to the stance of the ride, was to go with a different set of bars and neck, giving the ride a bit of lift (someone's wrists will thank me) and, in keeping with "using what we got' a clean set of simple Shimano grip shifts.  The bike came with Falcon Shifters (!?!?) which I doubt were original equipment, anyway.  One other little trick, where a fine grinding wheel comes in REAL handy.  Those little plastic pieces on some brakes, that can oxidize as well?  A light pass over removes the film, bringing back the original color!!

After the paint was (relatively) dry (if you're doing this, you may want it to be COMPLETELY dry) went on to the assembly.  That, is self explanatory! 
The end result is as follows!  A gorgeous ride (if I may say so myself) that'll get many more years of road time! 

ONLY $155.00!!

That's it for "This Old Bike" and hope to see you next week on "Cranky Yankee Workshop"!

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ONLY $165.00!!

Monday, April 27, 2015

'E's not pinin'! 'E's passed on! This parrot is no more! He has ceased to be! 'E's expired and gone to meet 'is maker! 'E's a stiff! Bereft of life, 'e rests in peace! If you hadn't nailed 'im to the perch 'e'd be pushing up the daisies! 'Is metabolic processes are now 'istory! 'E's off the twig! 'E's kicked the bucket, 'e's shuffled off 'is mortal coil, run down the curtain and joined the bleedin' choir invisible!! THIS IS AN EX-PARROT!!'

"Go raibh maith agat as a íoc dúinn cuairt!"
A special shout out to my wife's lineage in Ireland for sitting at the top of International visitors to the blog yesterday! 
Yes, this is becoming my new, favorite past time in the morning when I open up the blog!  Seeing how many countries have signed on!  Don't worry, eventually I'll move on to some NEW fixations, as is almost inevitably the case!  Well, I'll ALWAYS have an affinity for the Irish!  Their food, their drink, their music, their women.  Trust me, marry an Irish woman and your life will NEVER be boring!!
Speaking of Irish!  Last night, in a pseudo celebration of yesterday being our last Sunday officially open for the new summer season, we first did a barbeque, with prerequisite children running amok in the yard, where Miranda got a hold of the hose and started dosing everyone.  As it turned out, not being sufficiently gassy from the Jambalaya from the night before, we did Carney style "Sausage, Peppers and Onions!  WOOF!!! 
AIR FRESHNER AT THE READY!! (sorry, but fart jokes NEVER get old!)
Then, having put the little ones to bed, Angi and I went out for a light evening of coffee and a meandering of silliness at the Barnes and Nobel, to do some browsing.  Well, we had intended on picking up another copy of the movie "Crow", as for some reason our DVD copy has disappeared.  Unfortunately, they didn't have it in stock, but whilst perusing through the discount bin, found a few choices we haven't see in awhile, or have lost our own copies (come on... a house full of kids, errant DVD's laying about that look strikingly similar to little, shiny, silver Frisbees?  You do the math! And BOY could I hurt someone, since I discovered my copy of Iron Giant won't even PLAY!).  As the little girls are becoming big fans of musicals, I snagged copies of "Hairspray" (John Travolta in a feminine fat suit?  How can you go wrong!?) and "Across the Universe".  Although after picking that one out, Elijah had to remind me that it contained "adult" situations!  Sad, has some AWESOME renditions of Beatles tunes (Although, I have ALWAYS been a "Monkee's" man!  Go figure!) And for Mom and Dad, grabbed a copy of "The Boondock Saints" special edition! (I was SORELY tempted, and had to remind myself of BILLS when I discovered they had Box Sets of MST3K!!!!  Angi was trying to convince me to go ahead and pick up one, but at $65.00 a Pop, just couldn't justify it!  SAD FACE!)   After viewing the movie, though, we were treated to a real surprise when I was going through the special features and in the Dossier section came to discover that the writer and director, Troy Duffy (and this was his FIRST FILM!!  Talk about hitting a home run on your first time at the plate (yep...that's it for my "Sports Metaphors"!)) is a native of Exeter, New Hampshire!?!?!  MY HOME TOWN!!  Shocking!  Such a small town to produce TWO boons to mankind!  Now I have even MORE reasons to LOVE that film!!
Yesterday was more of a fizzle then the fireworks I had hoped for as a send off, but that's not too surprising, as that's one of the reasons being open on Sunday's is superfluous.  We did manage to finish up the Cannondale, and, as reported, she was a PEACH!  Weird center pull brakes though!  Had never worked on that kind of a set up, and centering them was a bit of a chore, but it worked out!  As expected, the gent who put a deposit down on her, snagged her up right quick, realizing just what a gem he had.  A real testament to it's beauty was the fact that he is only down here for another three days before heading back up North, but he will be storing it down here for next year. 
With about an hour and a half left in the day to spare, we did the prerequisite Sunday cleaning, having moved so many bikes on Saturday, had to condense the stock again, making it possible to regain some floor space!  Once that was done, went ahead and put the Specialized Hard Rock in the rack and did the whole tear down.  Here's another project worthy of before and after pictures, so YES, I did remember to take out my phone camera again!!  In tomorrows installment, I'll show you a few tricks and tips on how to make it look NEW, without having to do a whole repaint.
This morning was REAL special though!  Apparently, having been able to spend some quality time playing with Miranda yesterday, I seem to be coming slightly more in focus.  Whereas, she usually goes ballistic if Angi dares to step outside for any reason, when I went out to the porch this morning to have my coffee, she went ape$#!+.  Quickly going back in to find out what was wrong, she motioned for me to sit on the sofa, while they were watching "Hair Spray" and proceeded to climb up behind me, hug me around the neck and start rocking me back in forth in time with the music!  OH, that just made my heart melt, and I reveled in the fact that I was the center of her attention for a few moments.  At least until the musical number ended.
So, even though my buttocks are dragging across the floor with an annoying squeaking sound (not unlike rubbing a flabby piece of chicken across wet plastic wrap.  Nice visual, hunh? We stayed up until almost 2 am!) I'm going to imbibed some more caffeine enriched, liquid motivation and get to work!
See ya soon!
Oh here's the Cannondale!  Prepare to drool!

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Sunday, April 26, 2015

“For a moment, nothing happened. Then, after a second or so, nothing continued to happen.”

Oh folks!  You dance a precarious tight rope when you give a Leo compliments!  Heh, Heh!  Thanks to all the folks who came in on Saturday, not only for giving SO MANY newbies a home, but for all the wonderful kind words!  And I really, in all modesty, do appreciate the fact that you enjoy my meaningless ramblings here!  To the gent from Chicago, down to visit his daughter and see the newest addition to his lineage (CONGRATS SIR!), boy was he beaming about it being a ten pound baby boy!  Heh, given the diminutive size of his daughter, as he described, I'm sure she is going to NEED someone around to help!  I appreciate the fact that from reading way up there, you decided to come in and check things out, and yes, in fact I AM writing a book, three actually.  Someday, maybe I'll have the time to actually write them all down!  I'm trying!  To the young lady paying us a visit from Tampa, thank you.  We are so happy you're going to be enjoying riding in the footsteps of your brother, and soon outrun him!  Yes, bikes in the "Big City" are a heck of a lot more convenient then trying to DRIVE to all the attractions Tampa has to offer!  And, with all do respect to everyone else that came in, my favorite conversation HAD to be with the young man, who apparently INSISTED to his folks, that when they visited from Europe, they HAD to come in and check us out AND communicate with a fellow "Mysterian"!  HEH!  And I thought I was a big fan!  And where as I value your opinion sir, I still say Mike was funnier then Joel.  Sorry. And the gent who is still searching for the perfect ride, we'll keep looking, and no, have no fear, I seriously doubt this blog will ever get overly political or foolishly convinced of it's own self importance! 
SO, as mentioned, yesterday was a Hoopla of FUN!  Don't hold me to this number, but I'm pretty sure we sent twelve home!  Not our record, I assure you, far from it!  (For posterity, that number stands at 37 in one day.  Set back when we were working out of the garage, and I won't take credit for the numbers.  I was slaving in the garage while Angi was doing all the "barking", and the boys helped load them up!) On top of that, we had a bevy of repairs come in, first thing, so that's what I was up too the majority of the day.  I did finally become able to get to work on the classic Cannondale, but don't get your saliva frothed up, already have a deposit on that one. 
Also, twas a day of donations, thank you ALL so very much!!  Mind you, most were in rough, mostly, beyond help shape (and we HATE to say that!) BUT, of those going to the scrap yard, we did manage to salvage quite a bit of goodies!  One Fuji MTB, with a unfortunate case of permeating rust on the frame, gave us a bevy of really nice Suntour alloy components!  SAH-WEET!!!  We do have a classic Specialized Hard rock, that is going to need a LOT of TLC (not to mention parts) but is going to make it!
Tuckered out, we packed it in, relatively on time, and headed to the house!  Somehow, the level of "agitation" around the homestead was at a peak, and it took a little doing, but eventually the frayed nerves quickly devolved into sarcasm and rough housing, and once that was all done, we chilled out for the evening.  Angi, somewhat melancholy over the fact that she was unable to attend the Marilyn Manson concert in upstate Florida last night, decided to pop in her available videos from him, and have her own personal audience.  I kept the kiddo's occupied while she did so, and after "bonding" with Miranda with some wrestling, tickling and a sock puppet show (which I don't think she was TOO impressed with, as she pulled it off my hand, studying it, then discarding it on the floor) I put the girls to bed, with a VERY heartwarming round of repetitive "I love you Daddy's"!  Oh, makes me freaking MELT!!   At this point, Owen, Logan, Elijah and I sat down for a couple hands of Magic which is always a crap shoot as to whether or not it degrades into a verbal war, or argument over rulings.  It was during this that Owen made an observation, thereby giving me an opportunity to teach him  a very important tenant of parenting.  As everyone in the house is WELL aware of the battle of wills going on between Elijah and I, he inquired as to how we could be sitting, playing and joking with each other the day after we seemed to want to kill eachother.  Simply put, the two most IMPORTANT qualities a parent can possess when raising children is Forgetfulness and Forgiveness.  If you take anything a child can and WILL do to you, as they grow into their own, personally, it will create a level of animosity, bordering on hate, that can and does drive an insurmountable wedge between you.  I refuse to spend my twilight years in remorse.  The only wish I have, for myself, in life, is I go to my deathbed with NO regrets! 
Once the Magic was played, we degraded into the video games, popped in Need For Speed and the living room immediately became doused with bravado, competitive egos and the heady stench of testosterone (and, much to Angela's chagrin, something a tad bit more we had Jambalaya with Sausage and Black Beans for dinner!)  YEP!  Five men, one couch, Methane and a propensity to "Out DO" each other!  Personally, I think Elijah won that round as Kaleb's eyes started to water!!
Oh yes, I can be a sensitive man, but at time I can thoroughly devolve into a "GUY!"
NOW, on to an important Public Service Announcement!!
As of Monday April 27th, 2015 (for those without a calendar...that's tomorrow) we will be reverting to our SUMMER HOURS!!!
The new Stretch will be

Monday-Friday 9am-7pm

Saturday 9am-6pm

As a new, Angi Inspired Addition, we now offer
That's right!  Next time, if your out Pub Crawling and have an issue, just give us a call at (727) 831-9742 and we'll meet ya at the shop within thirty minuets and get ya rolling again! 
Now, I gotta git and put that Cannondale back on two wheels!
See ya soon! 

Saturday, April 25, 2015

“He felt that his whole life was some kind of dream and he sometimes wondered whose it was and whether they were enjoying it.”

Thankfully, not a philosophical morning, but a blissfully vacuous one! 
In a rare treat I was awoken and greeted by Angi this morn, as she had to get up early to see Rozy off on a school trip.  Well, I was actually awoken by the plaintive screams of Miranda, as Mama dared leave the confines of the house to greet the mother of the girl Rozy was going with.  Oh yes, Angi is very much a slave to about 4 square feet of the house, as Miranda's level of separation anxiety extends to Angi even going to the bathroom, as she MUST accompany her there, each time! We so desperately hope she grows out of this soon, as it will make her inevitable move to School Age VERY difficult! 
Last night was proof positive that it is time to switch to "Sumer Hours"!  For the last week or so, business, as it usually does once the weather turns warmer, switches to the first hour of the day and right around 5.30 pm, with several more patrons coming in as we are setting up to close. Last night we were here until around 7.30, as folks just kept coming by!  HEY, NO problem!!  We'll stick around.  Also, Angi has come up with the idea of 24 hour service, which we are kicking around the conference room!  She can remember back to the "Garage Day's" when we would be burning the Midnight Oil almost every night, and there were times we would be doing service work for folks at one O'clock in the morning!  We'll let you know on that later.
As mentioned, it was quite busy in the PM yesterday, having sent both the Dawes road bike and the Iron Horse conversion off to new homes!  They were QUITE happy with their picks, even to the point of the young lady who choose the Iron Horse vocalizing a list of "Hipster" customizations she had planned for her new ride! You Go Girl! 
Also, as to be expected, the Ladies 24" Cruiser found a home in the first hour of being open, as the lady happened to be passing by, and instantly fell in love with it, sighting how PERFECT it was!  Yea, we get a LOT of that when it comes to 24" cruisers!! And people wonder why I don't "deal" on them!  They are, like, freaking PLATINUM!!! 
This morning was a Whiz Bang as well, sending the Ezip conversion out, first thing, to a gent who got to hear my "Morning Voice" around 8 am this morning, when he called to inquire about it.  Yea, I sound a little like gravel in a disposal, but more tired! 
Not to mention, we have already had the beginning of our normal flood of Saturday repairs, which I have to jump on shortly, as I have two GEMS to work on as well!  The glorious Specialized 29'er, AND a SAH-WEET Old School Cannondale!  Jumpin Jimney!! 
So, with that, I bid you all a very fond adieu! Hope to see you soon!

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ONLY $75.00!!

Friday, April 24, 2015

“If there's anything more important than my ego around, I want it caught and shot now.”

Ever have one of those mornings when you get WAY to philosophical before 9 AM? 
Having long since figured out I need to leave the house by 8.30 in order to get there by 9.00 (mind you, it's really only about a five minute ride from our house) as Suzanne has an inherent imperative that predicates her unavoidable need to "sniff".  I've tried riding in the center of the road through our neighborhood just to try and make it out quickly, but if she catches some errant scent, she'll damn near pull me off Greedo just to get to it!  So, acquiescing to the inevitable, I just go slow, and wait.
It's during those waiting periods I have time to plan, or reflect, ponder, or lament whatever may or may not be going on in our life at any particular moment.  Sometimes that's a good thing, as it represents "me" time.  Then there are the times, like this morning, ones mind trails off in an entirely different path to something more imposing.  Oddly enough, it was as Suzanne was performing her morning "constitutional".  Now, if you're not a dog owner, this may sound a tad bit "icky", but as she does so, I watch.  No, this is not some perverse "ism" but merely the need to check and make sure there is no signs of anything "unusual", as in canines, it can lead to serious, life threatening problems.  It was at that moment, I began to ponder the majesty of the digestive system, bacteria, flies and larvae, which then branched out into broader musings on the intricacies of our eco system, the complex integration of every little aspect of life on this rock and their individual role in making sure everything works the way nature intended it to.  Then of course came the perplexing integration of man, and where exactly they fit into the whole bowl of Jambalaya.  Inevitably this lead to the question "Why are we here"?  Of course, the more humorous side of me said "42!" (OK, VERY obscure joke folks, just read (or watch) "The Hitchhikers Guide To The Galaxy") But by the time we Hit the Walgreens parking lot I had to shake my head out of the thought provoking ether and acknowledge the fact that I had had nowhere NEAR enough coffee for this train of thought!
Before I rave on about yesterday, A whoopin' SHOUT OUT to our International friends, who all combined (there were a total of 17 on the board from yesterday) outdid the American numbers two to one!  WHOOP, WHOOP!!  Now, I have often wondered why we get very few comments on the blog, given that we get a lot of people coming in here commenting on it, as I would love to know what y'all think, but after a conversation with Uncle Chippie this morning, he gave me a clue.  Seems with all the anti-Spam tech out there, it has become somewhat of a bear to get through and actually LEAVE a comment!  I just ask, if you have anything you want to say, good or bad, please brave the Sushi Line and leave us a note!
So, yesterday was an up and down day, as they often times can be, and we had blocks of "quiet" that were not squandered, as we managed to put out FOUR!  And a good thing!  Seems the word has gotten out over at Spring Training and two more "Jay's" (If I can call them that) paid us a visit yesterday and walked away with the Murray DBS on the Vacation Plan!  Keep spreading the word, folks as right now we have a LOT of DBS's available!   Even with the torrential rain in the earlier part of the day we got in a few repair drop offs, but as there was NO way I could do a test ride, had to put them aside for today!  Had a regular drop in to pick up another ride, this time he grabbed the Schwinn Ranger DBS, as he want's to occasionally park the road bike he got a few months back and hit some dirt!  More power to you, sir!  Towards the very tail end of the day we happily found a home for the Peugeot conversion we did about a month back.  Yes, it had sat here for a lot longer then I had thought, but as we like to say "A bike will always find it's owner".  Glad to see it going to a good home! 
So, we did finish up that Iron Horse Single Speed Conversion, and went with a 40/15 gearing.  Was going to do a 40/20, but oddly enough the 20 we have was a left hand drive (?) and she is a PEACH!!  Lightweight frame, she really gets out of her own way!
Next up, were a couple of newbies we got in that day, specifically a real sweet, like new, hard to find Ladies 24" Cruiser.  This one barely saw ANY road time, so she was in EXCELLENT condition!!  Then, the same can be said for the 26" dual shock MTB we got in trade for a wheel and tube!  I mean, barely rode, this one was just taking up space on his porch, and the Apartment complex he lives at said it needed to be stored away or gone.  Lucky for us, he had no more room for storage!
Check them out below!
OKAY, I'd love to sit and ramble, but I've already gotten in three repairs since I started this diatribe, so I best jump on it!
See ya soon!!

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ONLY $70.00!!
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ONLY $90.00!!
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ONY $120.00!!

Thursday, April 23, 2015

A Real Gone Guy!

I'll tell ya folks, there are times, not very often mind you, just some times you want to abandon all the precepts of good parenting and reach out and squeeze some sense into the neck of a child you brought into this world!  Oh, don't judge, because if you have kids you KNOW what I'm talking about.  I have NO doubt my parents had similar inclinations in regards to where my head belonged when I was a teenager!  At the very least, one feels the gravimetric pull of the blissful abandonment of all concerns regarding the child's "mental and emotional well being" and wants to just blurt out, in no uncertain "adult" terms exactly what they think of the ill conceived choices, motivations and justifications that any particular child may cling to! 
Nah, I'm not getting into particulars about it, nor the child driving me to thoughts of filicide, but suffice to say there is VERY little that will push me to the brink of really wanting to open my mouth and let all the vitriol spill forth in unabashed fervor, but, tasting blood, I bit down on my tongue and saved myself from the inevitable regret I would have had to endure afterwards.  However, the gnawing frustrations feverishly devouring my gut may take some time to abate.  Such is, I believe, the true tenants of parenting, the inevitable clash of ones own knowledge of right and wrong versus the burgeoning personality and morality construct of another human bound to you by blood.  One you feel an unwavering responsibility to teach, while at the exact same moment realizing, continuously, that they will have to take from it, what they will, in an attempt to define their OWN directions, whether or not it is in accordance with yours!
You just have to pick up the pieces while at the same time refrain from pulling out your own hair!
ANYWHO!  This is my coping mechanism folks!  Put it all down in words, using modern day ink and parchment to bury it, and move on!
SO, let's steer away from melancholy and veer head long into the day, yesterday!  Started out WHIZ BANG, with the Schwinn Sidewinder finding a new home first thing, post haste,  Then, shortly thereafter, a returning gent, who has been diligently waiting for the Specialized 29er we have waiting for clearance (fifteen day waiting period after we purchased it) and decided to secure it as HIS before someone else did with a deposit.  Then.....the day flat lined!  UGH!  Always trying to see the brighter side, we did utilize the time wisely and pumped out three new gems!  And I mean PEACHES!!  First, is another DBS in the form of a lightweight Schwinn Ranger MTB!  Very nice and CHEAP!!  THEN, it was on to the Dawes Triathlon 21 speed!  Oh this one is SAH-WEET!!  Lightweight frame, NEW tires, you have GOT to check this one out!  After a side step to do some tear-downs to get a few things out of the way, it was on to the EZip Comfort Bike we had gotten in earlier.  Once an electric bike, we stripped off all the motor guts and controllers, and with a few tweaks turned it into a real sturdy 7 speed comfort hybrid! This one is a PERFECT "BIG BOY!!"  Having been built to support both the weight of the rider and the motor, it's built extra tough, with oversized hubs, dual wall alloy rims, 12 gauge spokes, and a reinforced frame!!  AWESOME!! 
Today, I have the Iron Horse Urban in my rack and ready for a single speed conversion!  Going with a two to one ratio on it (Uncle Chippie is grinning) and have all the goodies laid out.  Once that one is finished, I have a nice 24" dual shock Triax "in a bucket" and two 20"er kiddo rides to keep me busy!  I can pray that folks bring me in something more to work on, but given the dark gray clouds and persistent precipitation plaguing poor pedestrians, purloining pleasurable pedaling, perhaps preempting prior promises. I presume poorly.
Sorry....had to P!
OKEY DOKE!  With that poorly produced pun, I am outta here!

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ONLY $160.00!!
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ONLY $120.00!!
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ONLY $75.00!!!

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Monkey Nuggets.

Yep!  Most of the times I REALLY love my job, as it fuels my preternatural need for recognition!  Hey...I'm a LEO! 
Thanks to all the folks for paying us a visit yesterday.... and this morning, as it turns out!  Right from the moment I pulled up out front had two folks waiting, and sent the Schwinn MTB home, likety split!  Also, had a very kind gent bring in his Honda racing bike, as he has had NO success with his rear tube!  He's gone through two, and the last shop he brought it too changed it out, first, and apparently didn't bother to do a cursory check on the condition of the rim, rather, they informed him he needed a new tire (although he did state, the tread still looked good to him).  Within an hour of leaving the establishment, it was flat.  He brought it back and pointed this out, to which they responded he must have ran over something else.  Trouble is, he hadn't rode it yet!  He just brought it out of their shop, put it in his bike rack and went home.  Once there, he took it down to ride, and
"flumpa, flumpa, flumpa"  it was flat.  Now, mind you, we have had some folks come in for tube changes and within an hour or so, brought it back with a flat, but before we state it was something they ran over we check the tire!  In this case, apparently they didn't.  Well, he then went to the store and bought his own tube, and installed it himself.  Unfortunately...same thing.  At this point a neighbor suggested he bring it too us.  As it turned out, he had two potential causes.  One, the wrong rim strip was put in, it was much too thin, AND there was a bur of molten sodder just at the lip of the rim at the joiner!  How in the HECK did they miss that.  Took a second to snap it off and sand smooth, then we were golden!  We thank the fine gentleman for all the praise he heaped on us, but in fact, it was merely the power of observation! 
OK, special shout out to our newest International friends!  Belarus!  Okay, I am not too proud to admit...I had to Google Map that one!  Had NO idea where it was!  Then again, Geometry  was never my best subject! 
shouldn't that be Geography?
(that last entry was for those folks who don't get my sense of humor)
 Oh, while I am at "Shout Out's" a REAL hearty thank you to the "gimmies" we picked up yesterday!  Had a gent bring in a donations from a young lady working over at the Boxcar, in the form of a "soon-to-be" gem of a ride!  A Dawes Road Bike!  SAH-WEET!!  This one is going to be a peach!!  ALSO, got in an EZip electric bike, minus the motor!  Yep, another person, unfortunate enough to buy one of these "electric" bikes, finally had enough of it's failures (and resulting discovery of just how much it would cost to fix them, elsewhere) and dropped it off for us to "do with it what you will!"  NO PROBLEM!!  Stripped of all the motorized components, it's a pretty sweet, lightweight comfort cruiser!! 
Spent the better part of the day doing up the repairs, as promised, and thankfully, working and moving around got rid of whatever stomach issues I was having, so I was able to finish the day out after all!  In doing so, we were able to put out two more newbies AND process out all the wheels that had been accumulating in my bay!  WOOF!  'Dem's a LOT of wheels shoved under there!  Got a couple REALLY sweet sets out of it all, though!  Two of the sets came out of the back of a scrap truck last week, and were so heavily "guckafied" that I just shoved them underneath for later!  a GOOD thing I didn't scrap 'em!  One set has Campagnolo hubs on Mavic G40 Rims!!!  WHOA!!  They were so encrusted with Quickset Mortar debris, I had NO idea!!!  The other is a really nice set of alloy Araya rims, classic style!  MAN!  I LOVE that part of this job, it's like Christmas at times! 
Needless to say, at this point the wheel rack is BURSTING!!  Thank GOD we reinforced the bloody thing! 
Today, we are hitting the newbies with new found gusto!  Elijah, is doing a rough out on another DBS in the form of a decent Schwinn MTB.  Once I tweak that one out, it's on to the Dawes, and I'll have him strip down the EZip!  Have no worries, that aint all!  We still have the Iron Horse we're going to change into a single, I just need to find the right rear rim for it, then a couple more banger already tore down and in buckets! 
So on to a FULL day!!
See y'all soon!

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ONLY $70.00!!

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

And The Wheels On The Bus, Go Round and Round...

Ugh.  Me no likeie waking up like that! 
Angela and I, tuckered out from the day, turned in way early last night, but apparently I should have sat up for a little longer as the egg salad sandwiches, loaded with onions  (Don't Judge ME!) did not have enough time to settle, and...well...they woke me up at 5 am.  I had a LOT of time to play "Charm King" on my phone in the "library". 
At this point your saying to yourself "WAY to much information!!"
What can I say, I am a VERY generous person!  I LOVE to share!
So, yesterday was a treat!  Angela is getting her feet wet again!  YAY!!  After having mostly recovered from her injuries from her biking accident, over the last few weeks we have made some small sojourns to get her back on two wheels!  I applaud her courage!  The first place we actually rode was to the old Sweetbay Plaza, as that was the sight of her crash, and she wanted to "baptize by fire".  Of course, she started out slow, on her old Murray three speed, but yesterday, she took out the Trek.  THE Trek.  I removed the aero bars for her, as that's what hung her up in the first place, so she was a little more comfortable.  She gave me the rare pleasure of coming up here and hanging out for the afternoon, having lunch and then visiting while I worked.  It was real nice having her back in the fold, and of course, as it is always lucky to have her here, we got real busy with drop offs.  So today, that's my primary objective, to get them all taken care of! 
Of course, in the afternoon, we got hit by rain so things got quiet, and I spent the time putting out two more newbies with a third all but done in my rack before we had to leave and take advantage of the lull in the rain.  First was a clean looking 18 speed Ladies Dual Shock MTB, and the other, the hard to come by, 29"er!!  Took a LOT of work to get up and running, but WELL worth it!!
OK, as the day is starting to get interesting, I best sign off, but we're looking forward to seeing you all soon! 

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ONLY $80.00

Monday, April 20, 2015

Yawn and Stretch And Try To Come To Life....

The weirdest mornings are those when you wake up and have to ask "what day is it?"
Yes, it's one of those Mondays!
Yesterday was another day of newbies! Put the rest of the Giant Iguana together and boy is she a peach! I was worried about the condition of the paint but with some gentle scrubbing, it all turned out alright.  Also added what I thought might just be a middle of the road Schwinn mountain bike,  but actually became a real looker! Today will be more of the same,  starting off with a Mongoose 29er already in my rack.
Hardly saw a soul in the plaza yesterday as the season seems to be winding down.  We'll probably be going to Spring hours in a couple weeks ,being closed again on Sunday,  unless we see a resurgence in interest. We'll keep you posted.
We did, however,  have a few visitors, as we were leaving.  Funny, no one all day, and then as we're leaving....bang!
A couple, whom,  were some of our Canadian friends, headed home, bringing us their remaining food stuffs! Thank you so very much! Hope you all have a great trip back.
Well, with little more to comment on, we're just gonna get right at tackling the day! Hope to see y'all real soon!

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ONLY $175.00!!
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ONLY $95.00!!

Sunday, April 19, 2015

...In A Field Of DBS!!!

Well, y'all definitely kept us busy with newbies, thank you very much! Got in several more new "Diamonds in the rough!" and we're working diligently to keep on top of them.  Elijah has the majority of them tore down, and I was able to get out two.  Yea, I know "only two!?!" But, they were what I thought would have been the easier to do, first, but turned out to be the "one thing after another" types!  UGH!  But, no harm no foul!  Got two more sweet DBS's out, and one is the rare type of ROAD BIKE DBS!!  An older Free Spirit, these things are tanks, hence the low price, but make for EXCELLENT trainers!  Get on one of these for six months, put in ten miles a day, and by the time you're done and get on a lighter, more appropriate road bike?  You will BLOW away the competition!!
We have the Giant Iguana in the rack and almost done.  She cleaned up REAL pretty!  Once that's done I have so many different directions to go in, it's anyone's guess which comes next!
Yesterday was a tad quiet for sending new rides to new homes.  Only found a friend for ONE?  That's not right for a Saturday!  Had a plethora of repairs though, so we kept some folks riding!  At least there's that! 
All right, as Sunday is a short day, and we got a lot to do, I'm signing off for now! Hopefully I'll have a lot of fun stories for tomorrow! 
See ya!

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6 speed comfort cruiser!!
ONLY $65.00!!
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ONLY $80.00!!

Saturday, April 18, 2015


Yesterday was, blissfully, all about acquisition!  In the best of the Ferengi tradition, we got in a bevy of beauties (or soon to be) that we attacked with vigor! With nary a moment to get bored (or to tackle a dreaded task of rearranging and cleaning the storeroom!  *SHUDDER*) we started getting a steady stream of fresh meat in!  We'll cover those in a second!  We sent the Trek 7200 to a new home in the most satisfactory of ways, with a gent who really appreciated the fine deal he was getting on such a choice ride!  Also, we got down and dirty with several repairs, thanks to all for the continued trust and to all those fine folk giving out our name!  That's so sweet!  I'm sitting here racking my brain, though, because I KNOW we sent another ride out with someone and for the life of me, I can NOT remember which one it was!  I'm sure it will come to me at the weirdest moment! 
Don't you HATE that!?  Happens to me all the time.  We'll be watching a movie,  trying to remember an actor and where we've seen them, and I know it but can't get it!  Then at 2 am in the morning as I'm drifting off, it's like, BING!!  ARRGH!
We put up five yesterday!  Finished  the SAH-WEET custom cruiser,   I know I promised an update yesterday, but with all the goodies coming in I got "BIZZIE!!"   Also, as promised...DAILY BANGER SPECIALS!!!  Let the band play a victory march!!  These are pretty bloody sharp looking rides too!  A real nice men's 26" MTB with front shocks, a ladies 26" "A to B" special 18 speed, and in the upper end, a clean Mongoose A40 MTB!  This one AINT' your Wal-Mart Mongoose!  Oh Nay, Nay!!  Capped the day off by squeezing in one more, a real sweet "pretty in Pink and Purple" girls 20"!!
Today, I already have Elijah stripping down four for me to re-furb (and he hated having to move first thing he got here.  Hee, hee!)  We have a real clean looking Mongoose dual shock MTB, that unfortunately has a damaged frame!  The PERFECT parts bike!  As I pondered what all I was going to do with it's bounty, we had a lady, down from Washington State, bring us in a Giant Iguana.  Nice looking ride, but...well... Washington State has some "challenging" riding up there, so it has some components in need of replacement!  VIOLA!  Also, had a donation of several half-bikes and components that had been littering a young mans work area, and he dropped them off to see if we could do anything with them, gratis.  SURE!  We LOVE free stuff!!  One of them, is an Iron Horse Commuter, that is a perfect candidate for a single speed!  Also, we snagged up another good DBS in the shape of a 7 speed comfort cruiser!  which is the first to be hitting my rack when I'm done here!  Oh, no, I'm not done.  Another "Classic"  DBS is the  Free Spirit road bike that got dropped off just before close.  She needs a good cleaning and possibly a replacement tire, but will make for a good El-Cheapo road ride!  Not much more you can do with these, as the weight hinders the making of a GREAT road bike!  Then to top it all off, a couple more little kiddo bikes!  But please, don't think even though we got in all these goodies, we couldn't use more!  Keep 'em comin' folks!
Once the day ended, we packed it in and headed home for " Family Movie Night!"  And the Pic? Godzilla! (2014)  OK, yes, a tad bit strange that we had, as of yet, NOT seen the flick!  Meant to see it in the theatre, missed out.  Then, we rented it from Red Box when it first went to DVD, but we got a bad copy!  Wouldn't play.  In disgust, we moved on.  Then, as we were trying to figure out what to get last night, we landed on the big green guy, and went with it!  In short, LOVED IT!! 
Ok, sure, there are a few head scratchers in the whole story, and I think I'll have to watch it again, as I have the sneaking suspicion they explained a lot of it in the first ten minuets of the film, but when watching with kids, that's the time they are at their loudest before settling in.  This film was PURE Godzilla Gold!  From a "Creature Double Feature" standpoint, the battle scenes and depiction of devastation were epic!  The devastation, however, was the real focal point.  Clearly, leading into the classic metaphor  of the "Folly of Man".  The original 1954 classic with Raymond Burr pointed out the horrors of nuclear war, while this one still clung to the dangers of Nuclear Power, it spoke more to the impending impact of Global Change.  Perhaps not directly, but what I really found poignant was the overall focus was on that of the human victims and survivors.  The Gigantic battles Between (SHOOT!  SPOILER ALERT) Godzilla and the MUTO's takes a back seat to the human impact.  This point is emphasized, as in one scene, as people are fleeing the oncoming clash of the Titans, rushing into an underground shelter, the camera is running with the crowd looking back at Godzilla approaching the creature as buildings crumble in a wash of dust and fire, and just as he locks onto the creature, the doors to the shelter slowly close on the scene!  Oh, you may feel slightly cheated that you miss the action, but after all, that isn't the whole point of the movie!  No fear though, as soon you are treated to the battle.  AND the cinematography and computer rendering is TOP NOTCH!  The swirling clouds of dust, debris and fire at time obscure the action, but at one point lend themselves to a beautiful scene, where being fed up with getting his butt kicked, you see his smoked cloaked shadow as the glowing blue hue of him "powering up"  thrums from the tip of his tail, trailing up his spine until he breaks from the smoke to unleash his hellish blue flame, full force on the MUTO!  Oh Angi and I went BALLISTIC with clapping!  And this Godzilla is TRUE Godzilla!  Don't get me wrong, I still hold true to the fact that I really enjoyed Matthew Brodericks Godzilla, that one was pure fun, but this one...?
OKAY, I best get a move on!  Loads to do!
See ya soon!

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26" MEN'S MTB!!
ONLY $90.00!!
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ONLY $70.00!!
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ONLY $170.00!!!