Another Summer NAPE Expo come and gone. Good times, good news, good people. Lots of shale prospects in every other booth. Traffic seemed a little slower and less over-heated than at the previous NAPE. But several people said it seemed the prospects being shown were better and the resulting talk more serious about real deal-making. Heard that at least $2 billion in fresh capital is being raised, to close by the fall, in two new private equity funds. Heard a long-time Pennsylvania oilman complain that the new shale players have "ruined it" for traditional shallow-gas leasing--for drilling the typical well to 3,000 feet in the Upper Devonian Bradford or Elk sands, that might only flow 200,000 cubic feet a day. Why would any landowner lease for $50 an acre when he hears about shale players now offering $2,000, or $20,000? "The old beat-up Appalachian Basin has changed. When was the last time anyone drilled a real oil or gas well there?" --Leslie Haines, Editor-in-chief, Oil and Gas Investor,