This will be a two-fer, as I feel the need to vent: first, some follow-up on my unfortunate experiences with The Caboose LHS in Denver: during the holidays, I retunred to the Caboose to check out an item my wife wanted to buy me for Christmas, but didn't want to get wrong. Imagine my feelings when the head salesperson for an entire section told me flat-out that Bachmann products were "junk", they were "crap" and he didn't want to seel me any. No defense or explanation, just bald statements from a man wolking in a store thqt carries ande sells a lot of Bachmann products. When I returned with my wife, the same guy praised the Bachmann stuff that she was picking up for me, until I stepped out from behind her and asked him in front of customers and a very senior-looking store manager type what happened to the "Bachmann is crap" viewpoint expressed to me? Was it only crap if a guy was buying? Was he willing to push products to wives that he felt were that inferior? If the products were truly that inferior, why were they even carried by the store? The manager and I subsequently had an interesting discussion, made all the more relevant by a) his knowledge of this forum, and b) his distress at the further knowledge that my experiences were posted here. He felt that the opinions and attitudes of one employee were not representative of the entire store. I very much begged to differ, pointing out that customers depended on the expertise and recommendations of the store staff, and that it wasn't the customer's problem to know which of his employees were trustworthy and which were not. I think I won that round. Onwards to the second item, which is more bothersome to me: I have been reading back issues of the various RR modelling mags, and began to notice a disturbing trend amongst all of the various editors to single out modelling the Colorado mountains as "old", "done to death", and similar disparaging comments. Intellectually, I understand the viewpoint that different and new is always desirable; however, how much of what is in those magazines even today is actually "new", beyond products and techniques? The answer is - not one blessed thing. So I sent letters to all of the current editors of the various publications quoting the relevant comments and asking them if they would care to publicly reconcile their positions as alleged proponents of the model railroading hobby, certainly making a good living off the hobby, with statements singling out a specific group of modellers as somehow being "bad", "boring" and so forth? Would they like to discuss the boring prevalence of logging layouts and switchyards? And if I have seen one diesel on a layout, I've seen hundreds...and I'm not a diesel fan. Neither are a lot of other modellers, for that matter. I closed by suggesting that they revise their approach to the entire hobby by first realizing that our hobby - not theirs,l and that we model as we choose. If modelling the superbly scenic Rocky Mountains offends them, perhaps they should consider another line of work, but slamming a particular segment of modellers is not and never will be an option of theirs. We shall see just how far their editorial "courage" is prepared to take them. That's it. Thanks for listening...looking...or whatever it is we do here. I feel better already. BTW - my wife got me some pretty nice stuff, and I don't care what the sales guy thinks of it. It isn't his layout.