my muse atmo -
here's a letter from almost twenty years ago.
i was quite thrilled to receive it atmo.
the english is a bit skewed, but mister campagnolo is referring to this advert i placed in the
VeloNews 20th anniversary issue. while i had been using print media since 1976, this was the
first time ever i used an adjective, a superlative, or similar marketing tactic.
Just for the record ... I was wearing three long-sleeve jersys in that photo (no NFL shoulderpads involved). It was 33 degrees when I left home for the 2 hour bike ride to Prov ! I was still thawing out in the deligthful sunshine when this photo was snapped.
My bike is the red and white one.
That box 'o Twizzlers was a big hit. Next time, get the bulk-packed ones ... my fingers were sore from opening all those wrappers.
My memory is poor, but I thought I had one of your bikes in the 80's that was painted by Brian Bayliss.
Here's a question ... spawned after discussing TLD's many talents with her this weekend:
Has TLD influenced any of the artistic aspects of your frames?
Thanks for all you've done and do for the cycling and framebuilding communities.
jim allen and baylis were the two painters atmo.
TLD has influenced my life, so it's fair to say yes to your question.
i used to be much more obsessive and detail oriented.
in the years since we have been a couple, i am much more detached and more likely to worry less about every little nuance.
hey i just used the word more three times in two sentences.
we've been a couple since about 1993 and my points of view as a framebuilder are inseparable from my role as a husband to TLD atmo.
and ps since i smoked my own self out, three others have sent over texts for me to paste in.
the Smoked Out board will live on after all.
not for sure though.
"and never look up to see what anyone else is doing"
That resonates with me-
You seem to have a pretty strict sense of what you want to build- do you ever feel the need (and pursue it) to build something out of your customer offered bikes? Outside of rolling refinements and updates, that is.
if the interpretation is correct, the answer is no atmo.
it might make it clear(er) to add that i am not an engineer type, or an artiste, or someone who wants to get people out of cars and on bicycles.
i don't think about changing the world, or the industry, or trying to get folks to look at me (iow my bicycles) by adding a new flourish or geegaw
that might appeal to their eye. despite all these years passing, i am still a person who accidentally and serendipitously entered all of this through
a side door. the plain fact is that bicycles are not even something i love or obsess about, and don't recall ever feeling differently. i like the life i
have lived and the places these turns in the road have taken me. but my real tie to making bicycles is that i am a racer who makes them rather
than a framebuilder who races. i've never felt otherwise. i don't read the bicycle periodicals, don't get the road tests or the tech jargon most
cats are fixated upon, and have never tried to up the ante by taking X and making it X plus whatever would make it lighter, stronger, or more
palatable. but don't get me wrong - i have worked hard, very hard, at taking what i do at the bench and trying to understand what makes it tick.
no one out there is more confounded by the assembly process than i am atmo. NO ONE. i am 100 percent confident that my intuition and racing
background have set a good table for me to make bicycles that fit and work well. but at the end of the day, they still have to be fabricated. and
that process is never the same twice. there are many folks out there that see the steel pipes and the red frames and the lack of any other cast
that supports my corporate culture (except for all my team clothes and atmo winter hats - buy, buy, buy - oops, sorry for the digression...) and
think i make the same thing over and over yada yada blah blah blah. only robots or a shift of workers at intergalactic bicycle transportation needs,
inc of middle new york state can make the same thing over and over...
what was the question?
all i can add to this is that, despite the college gig getting sidetracked and the job at the ski rack being taken before i even boarded a greyhound
bus with a one way ticket to vermont, and even factoring in that my trip to london was, in part, to get back at those creeps for saying i wasn't good
enough for their stupid bicycle mechanics job - despite all of this, bicycle framebuilding been betty, betty good to me atmo.
That is pretty much it- I was wondering if you ever have an itch do try something out that, while it may up on your for-sale rigs, isn't motivated by that. And yup, every one is a unique product/ moment/ shot to get it done.
edge, ink color, radius, color, and shape is exactly what i want and have worked towards, and making them look that
way gets easier with each passing season. that no two are alike design wise makes it such that each frame is being
built for the first time ever. any one who has ever made a cut in metal, used a heat source to join it, or has had to
coordinate so many intersections as are part of the task of making a frame - any one who has undertaken any of
these operations would have to feel similarly atmo. framebuilding is simultaneously mechanical and organic.
some quotes for thought from ole "strangers in the night---"
"cock yo hat -- angles are attitudes"
"i'm gona live till i die"
"ya gota love livin' baby 'cause dyin' is a pain in the ass"
"people often remark that i am lucky. luck is only important so far as a chance to sell yourself at the right moment. after that you've got to have talent and know how to use it"
my favorate --- "the best revenge is success"