...i won't bother retyping all my past experiences.
but i'm shopping for a Felt frameset.
Felt doesn't allow their stuff to be sold online.
i went to Felt's site, and found all the dealers in a 50 mile radius.
i emailed every one of them, telling them exactly what i was looking for, and i was up-front with them, saying that i had seen a few on eBay for X price, but would prefer to deal locally.
asked them to quote me a price.
i tried to do what everyone says you should do: support local bike shops, and if you find it online for substantially cheaper, give the bike store a chance to bargain with you.
10 shops, 4 days, zero responses.
not a "yes we have it and we can offer you X+200, but that's the best we can do"
not a "no, we don't have the frame"
not a "sorry, we have it but we can't sell it anywhere near that price"
not a "well, we don't have it but you might want to try out this other one"
don't they want business?
side note, the ebay auction ended; i let it end because i really thought my local shop where i bought my current Felt would get back to me. now the eBay seller isn't writing me back. jesus.