Thursday, August 16, 2018

Born To Run

It has become a tradition of sorts that my son and I attend the Waukesha Classic Car Show every August in Frame Park. I got him hooked on old cars a few years back and now we look forward to it every year. We made it again this year and it didn't disappoint.

Cars are the universal American conversation piece. (Most) everyone had a first car, and most everyone had a car that was sketchy, one bad muffler away from the junk yard. I wrote about cars a fair amount in my memoirs, only because in the '70s and '80's they didn't make them to last like they do now.

Furthermore, back then cars were made so the common person could work on them. Nowadays when I pop the hood I stand there looking at a hulking black engine block cover that stares back daring me to touch it. I am able to check the oil and other major fluids, but when it comes to say, changing an alternator, well, I have two tools; a phone and a checkbook.

In my book in progress, I lament and describe my first car, a '68 Oldsmobile Cutlass with over 110,000 miles on it. Got it for a "deal," only $400.00. This served as essentially a down payment for the next $2000.00 I put into it trying to keep it running for the next 8 months. It was a piece of junk that taught me a good lesson.

Not to let on too much about the forthcoming book, but there are a couple of car stories there that will make my mom's hair stand on end. I'll save them for the book, but suffice it to say that the car show brought those memories back to life.

Almost every car at the show held a memory for me, which I am certain wore on my son. He was just there to ogle the cars, but at times he seemed to enjoy my stories about a particular model.

So, here's a few shots from the show and what memory the car triggered.

My brother in-law Steve restored one of these. A favorite from '57

This was my first car, albeit a different year. Picture this in vomit green with no hub caps, lots of rust and snow tires, and you'll have my first car.

My buddy Ross had an '80s version of this Cutlass that he pulled out of storage with expired tabs when we drove out to South Dakota. (Our friend Ron's car was leaking gas, so we had to resort to pulling Ross' car out of storage. A little strategically placed mud over the expired tabs and we were good-to-go!


My girlfriend in college had a Chevy Nova. Nice car.

My sister had a '68 Impala with a 327 engine in it. Mom one-upped her with a 72 Impala with a 350 in it. Those engines were the best.

Wood siding. Why was that ever a good idea? 
'
{{{Wipes away drool}}}

Still on my bucket list to get one of these before death. Charger R/T or Super Bee.

Blogging off...

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