Normal People Versus Us
Last Saturday morning at 4 a.m., I dropped the CC/Rambler off the lift and rolled it to the open garage door to start it for the first time since October of last year when we kersploded the differential and the overrunning clutch in the transmission during a drag race. Three friends and I had started working on the car on Friday night after work. The exhaustion had reduced our vocabulary to a couple of short sentences. "I'm tired," I would say. "Ya, man, I'm tired," someone else would say. There would be a really long pause before someone would start the conversation over again. That was interrupted by some kind of groupthink, where a profound thought would hang there in the air until someone would put it to words.
"No Man, I'm Really Tired."I drove the F-250 home, which takes only about 15 minutes at 4 a.m. on a Saturday. During the trip, I had to concentrate on keeping my foot on the gas pedal, a feat I accomplished by rolling down the window and listening to the Flowmasters bounce off of the Jersey barrier that separated me from oncoming traffic. I could tell from the pitch that I was probably at or near the 70-mph speed limit, since the truck will slow to 50 if you are off the gas for more than a few seconds, and the 3.73s will redline the 352 at 80. It's a frontal area and GVW thing. I made it home and stumbled through the house waking up the dogs and whomever it was that was sleeping on my couch. As a lifer car guy, this is normal fare. I don't think it's odd and chances are you don't either. The juxtaposition occurs when you contrast the lifestyle against what I would call Regulars (or Muggles if you are Harry Potter). Here are some things that they just don't understand.
Car Guys Will Buy A Car From A Guy With No Teeth
I know a guy who has never purchased a car or a bike from the classifieds. Everything he has ever bought is new, so he always deals with finance guys with clean suits and a good dental plan. I've bought cars from divorces, felons, and guys with personal-hygiene emergencies because that's where you can find the really good deals.
Exploding Parts Do Not Bother UsPicture me and another gearhead on the way to the par-3 golf course for a little R&R when the planetary in the TH350 makes a sound like a can full of header bolts and drops Second and Third gear. We rolled to a parking space right in front of the course and grabbed the clubs. The girl that was riding with us just stood there, mouth agape. "Didn't you hear that? Where are you guys going?" she asked. "To play golf," we said.
We Are Comfortable In Parts Houses
There is a parts house in a hard-core ghetto near the CC shop that features a big parrot on a perch. The guy at the counter said that the parrot doesn't like girls and used to throw its dinner plate at the secretary when she walked by. There was also a bike shop in a converted home I used to frequent in Seattle that featured guys frying eggs on a hot plate for breakfast while I searched their attic for a side cover for a '78 CB750. Regulars are missing this entire side of life.
We Are Comfortable In The Junkyard
My wife and most of my friends won't go near the junkyard because of the smell and the filth. I personally enjoy the gratification of a good engine pull. I was halfway through a small-block Ford pull when I leaned back and looked at the sky and the fluffy clouds. It was 70 degrees and I was submerged in my element, enjoying a cool breeze with a V-8 on a chain that was soon to be mine. It doesn't get any better than that.-Douglas R. Glad
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