It won’t be long now until that special time of the year comes up for bicycle gear junkies like myself. Interbike is just around the corner and it’s almost like Christmas in fall for those who love bicycles.
When I was young, we got a catalog every fall that was called the “Wish Book” by the retailer that sent it out. I remember the day when it would come in the mail. I would turn right to the toy section and gaze for hours at the myriads of toys pictured in its glossy pages. Nowadays, it’s the fall bike show in Las Vegas called Interbike that does the same thing for me. It’s like the “wish book” for cyclists, especially now with the coverage that you can get on the web. Picture upon picture of new bikes, gear, and cycling celebrities are getting my attention now, much like the toy pages did in that catalog years ago.
Of course, it wasn’t always this way. Years ago, before the proliferation of digital cameras and easy internet access, you had to wait for two agonizing months for the print magazines to publish the latest in cycling hardware. That meant that you had Interbike in September and you might see the coverage come November!
That was when being at the show was a prestigious thing. You had to be in the industry, and then lucky enough to be one of the few in the industry to get to go to event. I remember that time well. I was a bike shop wrench that got to go along to “the big show” one year and, when I got back, everyone I knew wanted to know about the “new stuff”. It was exciting to be one of the few “in the know” for a couple of months. Now, however, it isn’t so much the case since, with a few clicks of your mouse, you can see the show virtually as it happens. You know what “they” know in a matter of a few hours. So much for “being there”!
The positive side of this is that now you have all of what’s worth seeing at Interbike available to see when ever you want to, as much as you want to. Just like that old “Wish Book”, only the “toys” now are two wheeled, shiny, multi-colored machines. It’s a great time of the year for dreamers like me. I don’t have to travel. I don’t have to hustle and bustle through the Vegas jungle. I can just stare at the pictures and dream. Just like so many years ago.
So, while I won’t be getting to rub shoulders with cycling elite, getting dirty at the On Dirt Demo, or picking up a million useless stickers and catalogs, I will be enjoying the sights of this years Interbike. I’ll be surfing the web and dreaming of shiny new bits. Just like a million other kids.