Newbie from Texas
It's nice to see such a thriving and helpful community for bikers, and I'm quite sure I'll learn more here than I could ever hope to learn lurking at bike shops and trolling the Web.
I'm located in Fort Worth, Texas, and I'm new to biking (aside from being an avid rider when I was younger). A friend of mine at work became interested in mountain biking, and I must say it has rubbed off on me (and now I have that dreaded/beloved bug)! I'm currently shopping around for my first "real" bike, and I have already found the "around $500" thread to be most helpful.
I look forward to learning all I can and hopefully contributing to others as my knowledge and experience grow.