This is a very competitive little niche. Some might say too much so, and perhaps the reader will agree after reading this.
For a spell things settled down, or so I thought. I'm pleased that the thread is gone, but on a whim I logged onto CBXWorld, the west-coast hangout for CBX'ers, just to see what was in the air. This was maybe three weeks after Ringnalda's public meltdown.
The ICOA folks moved the the war and forgot to invite me. I might have expected it but still, you can never really prepare for the visceral shock of seeing pure vitriol written about you. Ringnalda had posted a hysterical rant that was merely a repeat of everything he'd already said, and Menten followed suit. From there it spread and before long all of the regulars were piling on about what a crook I am.
The story behind part of their venom, however, is that there are loads of misinformation in Nixon's online technical write ups, and this is entirely by design. He'll make the subject at hand look torturously complex, and in the process will bend the truth past the breaking point; but rather than tell you the answer he leads up to saying that now you have to buy his 39 dollar pamphlet to unravel the deep mystery.
This kind of device rubs me the wrong way. Fact is, there is no clearer or more reliable source of tech data than the Honda shop manual, which is a free download.
With this in mind I'd occasionally post tidbits of general info—we're talking me here, oldschoolcarbs, not CliffyCBX— that just happened to point out the more glaring inconsistencies in Nixon's oh so down-home musings. Okay, so I was selectively targeting his myths for busting but it's not like I had to look very hard. I kept it strictly on task, taunting remarks notwithstanding.
In order to dispel the notion that he's ever taught me anything I only wrote on subjects to which I could find no reference in his “white papers.”
But my website was naturally where I put my best effort. I covered what I believe are the important things to be aware of, striving always to be informative on subjects that you wouldn't find on his pages. Believe me, there was a time when I searched out everything he ever wrote. I was fastidious to the point of being obsessive about differentiating between us.
Say what you want about Mike Nixon but he's really intelligent. I mean, like, genius-level. What does he do? About six months after oldshcoolcarbs.com went live he registered a bunch of domain names—CBXcarbs.com, CB750carbs.com, Goldwingcarbs.com, and V4carbs.com. He populated them with (putatively) newly-written articles on similar subjects as those I penned. However, the copyrights are predated to look like he wrote them long ago. So now he gets to tell himself and anyone who's listening, once again, that I am in fact plagiarizing his intellectual property.
Perhaps I should be flattered that he monitors me so closely but it's also creepy.
Or maybe it's just a huge coincidence and I'm seeing ghosts because I'm paranoid.
Along in the process of separating my real self from my straw man identity I offended them and I'm just now receiving threats. Again. Not veiled ones mind you but direct and to the point: If I don't go away they're going to do bad things.
It has nothing to do with the facts, either with regard to forum drama or technical issues.
No, once the word was out that this article was on my website they're beside themselves with indignation that I infiltrated their twisted little cabal.
Of the many nasty emails I got once I blew my own cover, there are two that stand out.
The first is from Tony Herd who writes:
"Due to your
totally dishonest attempts to confuse, obfuscate and shamelessly self promote by using fictitious testimonials from non-existent customers I hereby formally withdraw my previous approval for you to
use my tip on your web site. Your conduct has been simply unacceptable.
With the utmost seriousness and concern for your well being may I most humbly and respectfully suggest it may be time to step back from all this, talk about your state of mind openly with your family, and perhaps get some assistance from your local mental health practitioner. Having been there myself some time back and I do recognise [sic] the signs and behaviours."
This reveals a couple of things. For one, the next time someone says to you, “I used to be crazy,” start walking. Any psychiatrist will tell you that they can only mitigate psychological disorders with chemicals.
More to the point, he can't be bothered to read this. If he has read it and is able nevertheless to arrive at his singularly myopic conclusion, it's only further evidence that he's still, well, you get the idea.
The other is from Phil Taber (falldownphil) who wrote a rather long tirade in which he informs me that the person with the sick and twisted mind is in reality me. Here's an example:“The side of the fence I'm on is the one you pushed me to. You know what's really pathetic is that Nixon's said nothing but good things about you, Jack. If you don't leave the forum forever I'll have no choice but to publish all the emails I have from people who will testify that you do substandard work.”
This presented a minor complication in that I was about to make an inconspicuous exit anyway but now I had to hang around just to call his bluff. So I wrote a few posts here and there to make sure he got the message. He never followed through.
Here we go again.
In late November of last year I got a call from Jay Leno. We conducted our business and I asked if he would don an oldschoolcarbs cap and send me a photo for my website, to which he enthusiastically agreed.
**I just have to throw this in: His guy had a set of cbx carbs apart and back together while a film crew stood by, looking at their watches and tapping their feet. Now THAT'S what I call a guru. **
I put the photo on my website and enjoyed the experience thoroughly.
Now, a brief history of Mike C.: Friends like him are rare but I say this in full knowledge of the fact that he'd turn on me in a heartbeat if I were to, for example, send barnyard porn to a teenage girl. Having stood up to the forum junkies he's taken more than his share of abuse. So it goes without saying that he answers to no man where it comes to speaking his mind.
Practically the instant the photo was up, he posted a link to my site on the CBX List, (which isn't a forum but an email distribution list—and is a place where I'm able to give advice without worry that someone will use it as a jumping off point for a full scale meltdown.) Well, that's what I thought anyway...
In any case, he wrote that Oldschool was getting some favorable attention.
And of course my website is where a person would find what you're reading just now. Eyeballs were landing there at a dramatically accelerated clip.
Almost immediately Ringnalda posted to the List (I didn't know he was even a member) that he's open to comments as to improving the ICOA. He wryly says "I'm wearing my nomex suit, so bring it on." It would seem that membership and traffic are both falling off drastically at ICOA over the last several months. Some would say it's in free fall, but whatever the reason he's right to be concerned so one in his position would naturally want things to recover. He's in this for the money, you know.
On Dec. 31, Leno's CBX video went live.
I put it on my website and again gave Cecchini the go-ahead to post the link to CBX List.
Before the day was out Ringnalda came off the spool. He replies,
Yes you are the wisest. You early adopter, you dragonslayer. It is great you supported Jack while he was contacting Mike Nixon with false names to trick him into revealing trade secrets.
If only he could have offered good work without trying to drag respected CBX
community members through the mud and posting with multiple personalities, we would now be having much more positive and pleasant communications.
We will see how this develops. Good resources are needed [but] trashing other resources is STILL unwanted.
Hopefully the drama and false accusations are a thing of the past, and maybe the new year resolution for Jack is to continue to build his enterprise in the normal manner; i.e. with honest hard work and good references (not just yours) without needing to generate hype.
I hadn't given more than a passing thought to the forums for it seemed like forever. Upon this latest hissy fit I wondered what was going on over there. Actually it was my wife who said, “You gotta see this!”
Within hours of the video's debut someone had started a thread on CBXWorld which quickly descended into the usual trashtalk, and not just about me. They excoriated Leno in absentia for his poor choice. Having someone of his stature turn to Mike Nixon was if anything a birthright whereas coming to me was a slap in the face to the CBX universe.
I took it in stride, noting with mild satisfaction that at least they weren't being as gratuitously vile as in previous times. After a few days of lively traffic things quieted down with no real daggers being slung.
I was beginning to fantasize that if things were to progress from quasi-civil to, dare I say, cordial...
Then the head guy of CBXWorld went all Ringnalda and posted this--out of the peaceful clear blue, with nothing having been said to warrant it:
“To address issues brought up in this thread, it appears to have at least partially resolved itself after I read all 4 pages myself to review what has been said. I just stand back as an admin here and let all post whatever's needed to be said in dissent or otherwise, and I'll dump water on any flame wars in here if need be. You guys handled things just fine......no moderation needed by me!...”
This was self-evident so why bother ringing that bell? But he's the forum owner so if he wants to show his ass, whatever. If only he'd left it at that.
But he continues,
“The oldschoolcarbs issue arose because Jack himself did in fact take out a secondary account in here(CliffyCBX) and did use it to try to influence his postings in the past. Mike Nixon also does carb work in here and took offense to some comments made by Jack awhile back, and made known his feelings...no wrong in voicing an opinion if it's kept civil, which it was.
After it was brought up that substandard work had allegedly been done by OSC, the shit hit the proverbial oscillating device and this in turn lit off most of the whole thing. OSC was warned (about) forum rules...He left the site shortly thereafter under dubious terms.”
You'd think I'd be used to it by now but I just can't get over these guys' steely determination to keep the negative stuff under the microscope. I just wish they'd get their facts even close to straight.
So ultimately there's been no forward movement whatsoever.
Boo hoo. LOL.
I swear, some people...
I stayed away from the forums for the longest time, but a customer whose opinion I value asked that I have a look at one called CB1100f.net, because one or two of the “experts” there were loading inquisitive, wide-eyed innocent newbies down with misinformation--all leading up to exhorting them to send their carbs to Nixon.
So I joined.
And immediately discovered that these guys really get around. They don't call them forum junkies for nothing.
My introductory post was met with caustic jibes from Taber, yes him again, and a guy who calls himself jebbysan—who I immediately recognized from CBXWorld and ICOA.
Jebbysan, whose real name is Jeffery Gadient, is a guy who by all appearances monitors a half-dozen forums 24/7 so he can be part of any discussion on any subject whether he has a clue or not. He boasts a lot about his home-made whiskey and his muscle cars, but beyond that I have no idea how he holds a job while spending his days at the keyboard instead of at work.
Whenever I ventured to post, he was right there literally within moments with a taunting rejoinder. I wrote something or other having to do with carbs and he immediately jumped in with,“Watch it with me, I'll out you in a heartbeat.” I infer from this that he feels an obligation to let people in on the real truth as promulgated by Ringnalda, Menten et.al.
But here's the thing. I have this personality disorder where I feel a compulsion to win over a skeptic. Perhaps I should grow a thicker hide but this kind of thing really gets to me. So anyway, in another thread, this jebbysan person had put up pictures of his CB750. I couldn't help but notice that the bike looks great but the carbs are dingy. It's a case of opposites that dovetail: my carbs look good but they don't run, his are ugly but they (supposedly) run perfectly. (Forgive the sarcasm; I couldn't resist.)
With me being new to the forum and him being such a dick right out of the gate I offered to make them look as good as the rest of the bike. The works. For free. In public.
His reply? Let me put it this way: if I made the offer in person I think he'd have spit on me.
So here we go, yet again. But rather than drop it I find myself with yet another reason to pursue it just a little further.
I have a rule for forums nowadays: I'll only post if 1) I'm the first responder, or 2) If the subject is in my wheelhouse and I see that one of the “gurus” is giving what I know is egregiously poor advice.
But just now there's a third criterion: Let's suppose that a forum member agitates to lock someone out or barring that, wants to form a hand-picked group to splinter off—to forge their own way in the wilderness as it were, and not let the undesirables tag along.
I'm not theorizing. This has just now happened on CB1100f.net. The author isn't referring to me but nevertheless, it never ceases to surprise me how receptive people are to the idea of shunning and exclusivity. One of the responders actually advocates physical violence against the supposed offender, who merely expresses an opinion to which they don't cotton. (I know, what place do opinions have in purely technical discussions, but never mind.)
I wrote an extremely brief recap of my experience with the CBX goobers as an example of how not to run a forum, my expressed point being that tossing people out just because you don't agree with them is what you'd find in a police- or religious- state. Or a middle-school cafeteria.
The first answer is from a guy called DOHCRob, who says that he knows everything about my “sordid affair,” and further that I am, in predictable fashion, muddying the waters.
Immediately following that, jebbysan elbowed in for his moment in the sun. He prefaces himself by saying that he read this on my website the first time around. He goes on to sagely caution that folks must draw their own conclusions before adding that his own thoughtful analysis yields only one imaginable conclusion: oldschoolcarbs is delusional and made it all up.
For all I know or care he just wants to get a rise out of me. There's even a comic aspect to it, but only in a limited sense.
If I've said it once I've said it a thousand times that if they want to come after me, whatever. But finding amusement in attacking women and children?
Nope. I'll shine a light on you every time.
We roll over the bumps and move ahead.
I've had an unspoken agreement with Mike Nixon that he or his followers not use my name in any context, good or bad. Well, if someone wants to say something good about me that's fine--but my point is that we'll coexist provided that they defer comments about me regardless the situation.
Some got the memo--even Ringnalda backed off and things seemed to be in a state of equilibrium.
Well, I've just now learned that they're back to not playing by the ground rules. "Never stopped" is more like it, but I don't swim in their piss puddle any more so who knew. But then they take the initiative in a way so as to ensure that I'll see it.
Turns out that while I was in the hospital after the great crash, one of the Nixon loyalists took it upon himself to libel me. Again. The commenter didn't know that I was fighting for my life when he wrote it, but that's kind of my point: I doubt that it would have made any difference had he known.
It started like it always does: someone makes a favorable reference and immediately they commence flicking boogers every which way.
This time around the author is Ray Fitzpatrick who goes alternately by 'fasterspider' and 'fitz.' In response to someone posting a link to my website (on Jan 3rd of THIS year) with an accompanying comment that I appear to come highly recommended, "Fitz" writes,
"And we of CBX World think that Jack of oldschoolcarbs is a supreme dumbass who can't get it right without resorting to bribery like he did with me actually paying me $250.00 not to give the carbs to Mike Nixon to get them right."
In typical fashion it hasn't a grain of truth to it. In fact, the owner of said carbs, Jesse Johnson, not only severed ties with Fitzpatrick due to his childish tantrums but continued not only to send work to me but to refer customers my way.
And again for the record there was nothing wrong with them. Except, that is, for the fact that 1) someone had removed the bowls (with the wrong driver no less--brand new screw-heads were all chewed up) and 2) there was a bit of carbonized debris lodged in a jet. I don't have hard-baked rubber anywhere in or near my shop. Just saying...
Ray insisted that Jesse send my carbs to "Mike Nixon, the only man on earth who knows how to do them right and who isn't an incompetent idiot moron loser." Really, that's what he said. And much more. So, yes, I offered a partial refund on the condition that he return them to me.
Do keep in mind that this all took place long before Nixon and Peterson blasted their way into our lives. Ray might have been a harbinger of things to come, but sometimes who's to know until they're at the gate.
Did Peterson take a cue from Ray regarding my overly-conciliatory refund policy? They all know each other but what if he did?
It's more about the fact that the cesspool which comprises forums in general is a clear suggestion as to the quality of the people who infest them.
You see, there's another wrinkle to the whole thing in that we've developed compelling evidence that as recently as a couple of months ago another Nixonite availed himself of an opportunity to do me a bad turn.
Seriously, even I think I'm being paranoid sometimes. But then something pops up that really makes you wonder.
Case in point: I sent a set of restored carbs to a shop owner, let's call him "Customer A," for a client's bike. Customer A has in his operation a person who aggressively militates sending out to Nixon instead of to me. What else is new? Those guys are everywhere, and besides which there's nothing inherently wrong with loyalty.
Shortly, customer A's client reports that his newly restored bike doesn't run and all signs point to carb trouble.
Customer A puts client in touch with me directly to sort it out.
On my advice (and assurance that costs would be covered if the fault was mine), client trailers the bike to a close-by shop to pull the carbs and send them to me unmolested--a point upon which I am adamant in order to keep client's warranty in force.
Once I had them on my workbench there were some immediately apparent issues. Bowl screws, which were brand new when I put them on, were horribly chewed up. (Uh-oh, this again?)
The insides were far worse. In every bowl there was debris that resembled what you'd sweep off the kitchen floor.
Equally alarming, the float heights were so far off that the bike wasn't going to run even if the debris didn't do the trick. Oh, and the pilot needles were set willy-nilly. The sheer ham fisted-ness of it was jaw-dropping, to us anyway. Why? Because although my son does a lot of the assembly, I, and only I, do the final button-up, period. But of course the saboteur couldn't know this so he had no idea what a jackass he was making of not only himself but of his employer.
Rather than make a federal case out of it I fixed them. Then I got some nail polish of a distinctive color and ever since then I've put a tiny dab on select screws. You can't see it when they're on the bike, but upended on a workbench you can't miss it. I probably should have been doing this all along, but then again how are you supposed to anticipate such dogged determination?
Before I started doing this, there were four (that I know of) identically sabotaged sets, one of them that made its way to Australia.
Since then? Zero.
Time passes. Man, I gotta tell you these guys just don't give up.
I realize that his must seem to be dragging on so I'll be brief.
Not so long ago there was a to-do on the CBXWorld forum.
A member in Estonia posted that his cbx had burned up so Menten floated a proposal for guys to donate what they could to the noble cause of resurrecting his beloved bike from the ashes. I figured that there was no way on earth they'd sully the love-fest just to get at me so I offered a carb kit. Gawd, but I can be naive.
Within moments Taber wrote...oh hell see it for yourself.
A day later Menten added this (he needed some time to "gather his thoughts") :
Kind of speaks for itself. Devoid of context indeed! Note the date: Mid-2015
Then there was the time when I logged onto ebay to check what were at the time 12 or more ads. They were all gone and my account was suspended so I called customer support and was informed that a couple of days earlier someone called them and said that I was on life support and not expected to survive. In cases like this their policy is to cancel all ads and freeze the account.
I was livid and demanded to know if the caller had given a name. The rep said, "Someone named Phil. Do you know anyone by that name who'd pull a prank like this?"
Okay so maybe this won't be as brief.
Hang on to your seat, this is going to be a wild ride. These guys' deviousness simply cannot be anticipated. I haven't said this outright before so let me first say...
If you send barnyard porn to my wife and daughter:
I am required to make you look like the feces you are.
I can lie to you.
I can trick you.
I can scheme against you.
I can swear a solemn oath and break it with a smile.
I can do any damn thing I want,
(except physically threaten or financially defraud.)
About a year and a half ago Menten retired, bought a "vapor blasting" cabinet, and hung out his shingle. Thus was born "Restocycle LLC."
This is a tool which in the hands of an amateur can do untold damage. Put a pin in this.
Concurrently, Louis Mintrone, Phil Taber, and a couple of other people had convinced a new CBX buyer, Kirk Dobson, that the reason his carbs (a 2 year old resto I'd done for the seller) were leaking was because my parts were trash and that Kirk needed to buy Louis' kits. Which promptly failed. The bike had sat for a year and the floats were munged up. I simply cleaned and reinstalled the original float valves--which Kirk had saved--and the bike sprang to life. Kirk, who during this debacle came to realize how shamelessly they'd abused him, has become a vocal supporter and a friend. Just saying...
This really pissed me off so I emailed my then-current PDF to Louis. Before the day was out he had forwarded it to a number of people, among which were Randall Washington (Randakk's Cycle Shak) and Bill Brint (Tim's International CBX Supply www.timscbx.com).
Menten got it too. He writes,
"Your most recent "forum drama" spew accuses me and Jan and a half dozen other people of conspiracy and collusion and intentionally sending you pornography and all sorts of outlandish accusations, and you know none of that is true...The truth is what I wrote on CBXWorld - and you know it. You asked me to remove forum posts and made wild accusations about Peterson that I would have no way of knowing were true."
On the other hand, Bill said that if even half of it was true, well that was bad enough.
Then it blew up. Bill called the next day, furious, and said that he was flooded with emails and phone calls from people saying that they'd never buy anything from him again so long as I was saying bad things about their friends. He said that maybe it was time to start sending carbs to Mike Nixon after all.
Menten waited a day and wrote,
If you have it in you to apologize and take responsibility for your actions, the ruses, the stalking, and the sending of libelous and defamatory documents, and say you will not do those things again, then I have it in me to forgive you.
That has to happen first Jack, or there can be no peace.
Take responsibility and make amends Jack, and good things can happen.
Now, back to Restocycle. Using another of my dummy identities, I had a couple of weeks prior to this blow up arranged to send him a set of CBX carbs for him to "do his magic" on. He destroyed them. Seriously. As in "not usable." Those are some expensive carbs to replace, going for roughly 5-700 per set. (See the accompanying PDF "RestoCycle.)
I played the role of the irate customer for a few emails. I wasn't paying attention and accidentally answered one of his replies using the wrong CC so now he knew it was me. But who cared? I took photos, made a nice PDF, and emailed it to him. Sheer incompetence, all in hi-res.
In a twinkling he was absolutely devastated, devastated I tell you, about the bestiality video.
"I'm sorry, I didn't see
Sincerely - close your eyes for a moment and imagine that I was sincere when I said I was horrified about the Peterson stuff."
What, was I in a coma when he said that?? He continues, all contrite,
"I had a moment "in your shoes", I know that was by design. A customer that wouldn't be reasoned with, no matter how I tried."
Not fun. I still don't appreciate it, but I do understand what it is like sometimes for you.
I hope we can move on."
"How about we agree to get along
I can count on one hand the number of folks I've sent it to recently and you all know each other anyway so it's not what you'd call "in the public domain."
Hence there is no cause for anxiety where I am concerned, for anyone.
Now back to the stir among Bill and Randall, but first some context. I didn't know this at the time but Randall was in the process of selling the cycle shak.
My PDF, being in an unknowable scope of distribution, had the real possibility of affecting negotiations. Decent people cringe at this sort of association. Bill said that it would definitely be a problem were he one of the buyers.
Plus, not only are Bill and Randall close friends but Randall has for years been underwriting Bill's AHRMA CBX Race bike.
Bill called and again and said that I needed to do whatever it took to, "make this s**t go away!!"
Randall also chimed in,
"GET MY NAME THE EFF OUT OF THIS RIGHT NOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!I'M NOT KIDDING!!!!!!!!!!!!"
(When years ago I told Randall what his friends were doing to the value of my business he upped the stakes by writing on his website that he and Nixon were like brothers...sheesh.)
Bill by then had sent me, oh, I don't know maybe 50 CBX carb sets (at $900 each.) Randall had also recently held out an olive branch...
Ultimately, this just wasn't the time to make a stand. So I backed off.
What I had on my hands, essentially, was akin to your two-year old pitching a tantrum at a banquet where you're the one who's getting the award.
I had a dreadful premonition that by saying that I was sorry in principle that any of it had happened and that I had no extant plans resume/continue distribution, he'd take it as the death blow to my credibility. I wasn't wrong, but it would be a while yet...
"Peace then. And thank you for your grace.
Wishing us both a future of prosperity, peace and personal growth.
Things quieted down, all the while with me assuming that he'd reciprocated as promised and taken his bit off of the forum. We're very busy and quite frankly it passed out of mind.
* * *
Then there's Facebook. If you think it's been weird so far, get ready. This is in red because that's what we're seeing.
A little less than a year ago Mike C. called--interrupted a lovely ride in the mountains in fact--and asked if I was on facebook. When I said no he replied that I had better join, and soon. He explained that there was a CBX specific group (which, like the forums, I'd never heard of prior to him telling me) and that Ringnalda, Taber, Menten, and others were up to their usual. In a repeat of what took place on the forums (which I'd blissfully ignored for ever so long), someone posted how happy they were with my carbs and the thread quickly descended into a splatter fest. The group in question is called "Honda CBX 1000 Owners Club." https://www.facebook.com/groups/23015667175/ (to which I'll hereafter refer as "CBX group".
I joined and offered up a comment. It went from ugly to heinous so I appealed to the club founder/admin, Klaus Hansen, to delete the whole thread--good comments about me notwithstanding. Five minutes later, it was gone.
Klaus, in a very welcome change, actively encouraged me to drop a link into my posts.
I very shortly joined another group "HONDA CB750F/900F/1100F/R, CB-Custom and CBX 78-83," (aka "DOHC" from here on. https://www.facebook.com/groups/128375520537248/ ) and got the same favorable reception. After a time I was invited on board DOHC as one of the admins.
Herein lies the stark contrast between forums and facebook. One factor, obviously, is that the FB groups to which I belong are moderated by rational human beings but, more importantly, I get carb work and parts sales therefrom. Plus, more past customers than you can shake a stick at have popped up with hellos, thank-yous, and friend requests once they saw me. I've never been one for social networking but this was, and is, both gratifying and profitable.
On the other hand, people tell me that ICOA and CBXWorld are for all intents and purposes dead. They go for days and days without a single post while the facebook group pages are flourishing. In the course of familiarizing myself with this entirely new venue, I came to discover they're all here, having fled the forums for new ground to infest. Indeed.
A short while back, Menten and McMunn started writing posts on CBX and DOHC to the effect of, "Let's face it folks, Facebook a joke. Join CBXWorld and ICOA and meet actual experts instead of pretenders spreading misinformation." Really? They're all on FB so what "pretenders" were they referring to?
A few weeks ago, Klaus PM'd me out of the blue saying that he'd sold his CBX wanted to step away from the group. I said I'd be honored to take over. Thirty seconds later I was the group's sole admin, which he posted. The news spread like wildfire.
I spent the rest of the morning staving off folks who demanded that I make them co-admin. This is an interesting proposition seeing as how if I were to elevate, say, Nils Menten to admin, he could turn right around and remove me. An admin's power is absolute, and is absolutely equal to other admins. I thought to myself, "Nice try."
With them increasingly using facebook to recruit people to their forums I asked a friend who is a member on CBXWorld to have a look there just to see if there's any mention of me. Imagine my (our) shock to discover that not only is Menten's post still there, it has over time accumulated FOUR THOUSAND unique visitors.
I wrote a PM to Dave McMunn that I was uneasy with having just learned that they, despite assurances to the contrary, were still up to the same old same old. Urging people to leave FB for their forums to read the "real truth" was essentially the same as inviting people to read Menten's "expose". Nine thousand people saw the anti-oldschool campaign when it was on the ICOA forum, and now another four thousand. It's incomprehensible.
Rather than belabor the obvious I merely asked that he remove all references to me from the forums, good or bad, and then we can all start with a clean slate. Fame and fortune awaits us all.
He replied, "Well, that didn't take long." Seems they just knew that I'd impose my evil will on their perfect selves. He smugly suggested that he is powerless there and that I should take my complaint to the forum owner. But I'm not a member and can't reach anyone there, and he knows this.
Disgusted with them using PM to spread their agenda out of view, I exercised one of my new found powers and muted the lot of them--Ringnalda, Menten, Taber, McMunn, and Gadient. When a person is muted they can read what's going on but they can't participate.
That night I got a call from none other than Phil Taber. Furious at being silenced, he needed to add his voice to the chorus that everything in Menten's post is absolutely true so there it will stay.
Rather than hang up on him, I soft pedaled for a few minutes before venturing,
"So Phil, while I have you on the phone, let me ask: Did you read my doc when it was up on my website last time around?"
"Of course I did. You tried to drag me into your bulls**t."
"Tell me then, what do you think about sending bestiality porn to teenage girls?"
"I did not personally send it to you."
"That's not what I asked. What do you think, in general, about the whole idea of sending filth like that to a young girl?"
"I just told you, I did NOT personally send it! You're just not helping your case here, Jack. It was a long time ago and you need to forget about it and move on like we all have."
Am I seeing things or is this the mother of non-denial denials? Despite moments ago--not to mention for all these years--saying that I made it all up, now he blithely concedes that it did in fact happen but pivots to the argument that because he didn't personally click the send button he's pure as the driven.
He knew. When it was happening, he knew. Everything. From the menacing texts, to the videos, and beyond.
And if he knew, they all knew: Menten, Ringnalda, McMunn, Gadient, Herd, Pope, Fitzpatrick--even McMunn's wife!--and an unknowable number of others as well. We've felt this in our bones since forever but it was just too absurd of a notion to say out loud. If you'll recall I actually drew a line separating them from Nixon and Peterson. That's how careful I've been to not give wrong impressions. This, however, changes the landscape. And it explains so much.
My mind reeling, I again raised the subject of everyone starting over from zero with a clean slate. He sad, "It is not going to happen. Period. Never," and then added, "Do you really want to go down this road?"
I said it sounded like he was threatening me. He replied, "I don't threaten. I act."
I said to go ahead and do whatever. He shouted, "F**k you are you listening I said F**K YOU!!!"
I'm a real stickler for due process so while I'm the first to admit that this is by no means a direct confession, when you listen to the recording (seriously, do they never learn?) it's good enough for us.
I woke up the next morning to lengthy PM from Ringnalda where he repeated the tired old litany about me cheating, lying, stealing trade secrets, dragging people through the mud...the usual. (So much for "moving on," eh?)
In closing he said, "Are you sure you want to go down this road?" (I swear, it's like these guys think with one mind.)
This constitutes a threat so I banned him.
Next morning there was another group PM (he's member of several groups so he can always get to me through back channels.) In a rambling and disjointed rant he demands to be reinstated and closes by saying, "You want a clean slate? EARN IT!"
Later that morning Bill Brint called, which I was half-dreading considering what happened the last time he got involved. This time, however, he laughingly remarked that I had them all in a tizzy so I filled him in. Seemed that Ringnalda had hours earlier shattered the peace on a FB group admin'ed by Bill's son Will (TurboCBX). Bill doesn't like drama so we don't talk of it unless there's a reason. This was such a time. The upshot there is that Ringnalda got banned from there too, and his nasty ravings removed.
Things seemed quiet for a time but trouble was brewing. I stumbled on this when Menten wrote a snarky post on the CBX group challenging my co-admin, Anders Westman to explain how it came to be that he joined the page one day and the next day he's been elevated to admin. Seriously. Ordering people around, as always. (For the record, I asked Anders, one of the admins on DOHC and a man who I trust a great deal, to join so that I could make him admin.)
I'm such a newb. On FB you can be blocked by another member. You can see his posts but you can't reply via PM because he is in effect invisible to you. Thus, if you have a problem with something he says you have to do it in public. This is fine between club members or whatnot but he had me, the group admin, blocked. Think what you want but he was poking me in the eye, not Anders, because he wanted to set off a public dispute. I polled the admins on DOHC and they were unanimous that blocking an admin is grounds for removal.
I updated my "Here are the rules," post on the CBX group (which is pinned to the top of the page) and gave him more than enough to read it. I even sent McMunn a PM to make sure he read it.
Still blocked after three days, I tossed Menten from both groups. And in doing so started World War III.
Over the next two days he used PM to embark on a truly ghastly campaign directed at the admins of DOHC that goes something like this:
(Nils in Magenta. Katsumi/ other admins' collective responses in Green.)
(I've paraphrased to shorten a many-pages long meltdown but I assure you, the context is fully intact.)
"Jack threw me off wrongly and he won't tell me why. You must reinstate me, now."
"Blocking an admin gets you banned. Universal rule. Period. No appeal."
"But he's a cheater, a liar, a trickster, a fraud. Look what I wrote about him on the forum. I never lie!" (Here he inserted the whole bit.)
"Nils, we know more than you think. (They've read this.) You need to stop. Take it up with Jack."
"No! We're going to do this MY way. Jack is sooo evil. He admitted to stalking, lying, and sending libelous documents and apologized and promised that he would stop!!" (I told you that this would come back and bite me someday...)
"Please. This is not the place to air your grievances."
"He sent CBX carbs to me under a fake name and lied about how I ruined them. Believe me. I'm the gentlest, kindest, most honest person you've ever met. Reinstate me now."
"Nils, this has to stop. Please."
"I'm being bullied! Reinstate me now. Anders is taking me out of context on purpose."
"No, he's not. Why will you not stop this?"
This hideous display played out over three nights, none of which I knew was happening because, well, he had me blocked. Anders caught this and included me right near the end. Let's just say that I was, am still, aghast and I let my feelings be known right away.
"Okay, okay, I get it. I've unblocked Jack. There. Are you happy now? Reinstate me! Katsumi, my dear, dear friend, please, please, pretty please do this for me!!! Now!!! Don't believe anything Jack says!!"
This is where you need to know what a sweet and gentle soul Katsumi san is. He doesn't trouble himself with the day to day except to approve everyone who asks to join and to gush over photos. He exudes a generosity of spirit that you've likely not encountered; it certainly is thus for me. Kats was growing deeply distressed and begged him to stop but Menten just kept plowing. The upshot was that Kats gave in and reinstated the bully.
Who was instantaneously banned again. Not by me. Not by Anders. One of the other admins (presumably) told Kats enough so that when Menten started bawling again he was told to go away.
It only gets weirder.
Maybe a week after this debacle a person named Simon CBX asked to join the CBX and DOHC pages so I let him on without giving it a second though.
The next day he posted on both groups a lengthy promotion for RestoCycle, which I deleted.
I PM'd him that I removed his post not only because he was promoting someone who's been banned but, as important, it comprised the worst kind of misinformation imaginable. He wasn't happy, to say the least--so I had a look at his profile page (as did Anders.)
Simon CBX joined FB on March 2nd 2018. His pro-Restocycle post appeared on the 3rd and it was his one and only post.
We began to suspect that he was likely not who he claimed to be. My first thought was that he was in reality a "forum regular" from CBXWorld named Mike Simon.
I updated the pinned post with a caution that posts which promote banned members and/or what I know to be egregiously bad information will be removed and to please take up any and all issues with the admins via PM.
Simon CBX did the exact opposite and raised a very public stink on both groups, which were--owing to the admins being on red alert--removed before very many folks were subjected to them.
Immediately Simon CBX attacked Anders via PM so I stepped in and in a flash of insight I wrote, "This is Nils, correct?"
He responded by angrily pointing out that he'd just now submitted his birth cert to FB to prove his identity (which isn't remotely possible to do), and that he's a prison guard in the UK whose real initials are "S.W." He went on to say that he knows everything about me being a crook, stalker, and fraud and that I need to seek professional help. He added that he was president of a gigantic vintage bike club in the UK and that everyone would hear about my shabby treatment of their dear leader in a twinkling. (One of the admins on DOHC lives in the UK and says that neither the club to which he refers to nor the person himself exists.)
I banned him and thought he went away but he's just returned but with a new name altogether. Now he's Simon Kingston! Seriously. I've had to ban Nils Menten, Simon CBX, and Simon Kingston from my groups. This is all Nils Menten, fyi. The charade came apart in an email exchange that would only be a waste of time to go into.
Things are happening fast.
Jan Ringnalda just now called me on the phone, as I was writing. I said to wait a moment while I connect the recorder. He shouted "NO!" and something unintelligible and the line went dead.
Immediately he sent me a text threatening me with a brand spanking new PDF that he and Menten have crafted. He says it'll be all over the internet by day's end and will also appear in print in the ICOA's annual CBXPress magazine.
"It doesn't make you look very good. The ball is in your court."
He provides no details as to how I might stay their hands but I imagine it has something to do with total capitulation, handing my CBX group over to them, and slinking away in utter defeat never to be heard from again.
He also has just this afternoon crashed onto my personal Oldschoolcarbs FB page with the same broken record of my crimes against humanity. Seriously, I wish I'd left it there just for people to see what an absolute jackass he makes of himself but in my haste and shock I deleted it and banned him from being able to comment again.
And now I come to learn that he's engaging the same group of admins as Menten did only a week ago, Katsumi san included, in a group chat where he's sending them his PDF and badgering them mercilessly that he simply MUST be reinstated to the DOHC group. Everyone is pissed beyond reckoning that someone has again dragged Katsumi san through the mud (wink) despite them pleading with him, practically on bended knee, to knock it off. (The screenshots, which I have indeed saved, are simply appalling.)
After two non-stop days it reached a fever pitch so I volunteered to sacrifice myself and step aside as co-admin so they can let him back into the group and maybe he'll let up on Kats. I did, they did, and he didn't.
This is how they operate. Menten, Taber, Ringnalda, Nixon, McMunn etc., have all retired now so they have all day and night to sit at their keyboards and concoct their intrigues whereas those of us who put in 10 hour days simply don't have the wherewithal to push back with anything even approaching their vigor.
Let's not forget that this latest flare-up is happening because I sent an email to Menten last week where I repeated for the umpteenth time that if they simply erase me from their forums, I'd welcome them back. In their usual tag-team way, Ringnalda answered and said that I need to grow up.
Think about this for a moment: Every time I remind them that the door is open, they escalate this now-ancient feud while shrilly screeching that as long as I continue to play the victim and cling to my childish obsession with the past, they're not going to relent.
And with thousands and thousands of people having come into contact with their increasingly distorted perception of reality, well you're damn right that I need to stop everything I'm doing to have a say.
But of course on top of reiterating that there's a path to peaceful coexistence, they're also aware of my most enlightening chat with Phil Taber. How? Because I told Dave McMunn all about it in a private message, just to see what would happen.
So I guess now we know.
One of my morning coffee buddies' wife is a criminal defense lawyer who has just now seen this. She says that one of the first things you learn is how to differentiate between the guilty and the innocent. She continues, "Wrongly accused people simply do not behave this way."
She goes onto say that even the freaking bailiffs can tell how guilty someone is by the amount of noise he makes about irrelevant nonsense, all the while being convinced that the judge will toss the case any minute now and then, "you'll all be sorry because I'll sue for zillions and it'll be you going to jail."
"Jack," she says, "For whatever it's worth they were all in on it."
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