I've been meaning to post this for a while now, but as you've noticed, I've been suffering from some form or writer's block.
Referring back to my post of October 1st, the owner of that broken Alpine has a new bike. He had been considering another bike even before the Alpine broke, but the mishap spurred him to action a little sooner than planned. On my advice, based on things things he said he wanted from a bike, he's purchased a Surly Long Haul Trucker, a bike designed for loaded touring. I've worked on and built up a few, and have been really impressed with the design and ride quality. One feature I really like is the ability to mount very wide tires ("Fatties Fit Fine" has long been a Surly slogan), making the bike very versatile.
Anyway, a couple of weeks ago, I got an email from Glenn, complete with pictures, regaling me with tales of his first big ride on the bike. It was gratifying to see how happy he is with his new bike... both because he was acting on my advice, and because I was the guy who discovered the crack in the Alpine. Seeing him so happy with the Surly takes away some of the "ouch" of that. Most of all though, it's just great to see him smiling like a kid.