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August 2012

5th Birthday Week--Cookie the Dog's Owner's Greatest Hits

As much fun as I've had over the last five years writing and reading about interesting cars and the irrational emotions they inspire, the even greater joy has come from getting to know the contributors and commenters who make these stories personal. Today I'm highlighting my favorite posts from Cookie the Dog's Owner, who aside from being a fantastically nice person, has been absolutely critical in keeping this blog running and lifting the quality of its writing. I have been fortunate enough to spend parts of my career among some of the world's best motorsports journalists and editors, and I can say that without question CTDO is one of the very best writers I've encountered, and has written an outsized proportion of this blog's very best content. His work is liberally sprinkled with dry wit, interesting research, and little jokes and comments that become apparent only when you hover your mouse over his hyperlinks.

It was too difficult to narrow down CTDO's best posts down to the top 10, so I made it (Alarm fur Cobra) 11.

Continue reading "5th Birthday Week--Cookie the Dog's Owner's Greatest Hits" »

5th Birthday Week--Anthony Cagle's Greatest Hits

HillbrookI've never met Anthony Cagle, but I think we'd have a lot in common. He's into history by trade; I do it as a hobby, like having spent part of the last four years relocating a magnificent mansion named "The Hillbrook ." This not so humble abode used to stand in Westchester County, New York, and was once owned by the family of a dear late friend of mine.

But where we probably share the most commonality is our admiration (Dare I say love) of the Mustang II. I bought a new one in 1974; presently he is the keeper of a magnificent 1978 Fastback. And if he ever wants to sell it, I hope he lets me know.

So in keeping with this week's theme, I'd like to present a few of my favorite Car Lust posts by Anthony J. Cagle, and a few words about each:

1962: It was a very good year

on December 18, 2008

I take this opportunity to sing the praises of not one car, but many: those from a single year, 1962. Why this particular year? I can almost hear the thoughts of many out there wondering why this year and not some other one that has way more hot cars. What about '69 when we had Super Bees and Boss 302s? Or maybe 1964, which saw both the GTO and the Mustang debut? To these criticisms I can only respond: Hey, this is Car Lust, after all.

Continue reading "5th Birthday Week--Anthony Cagle's Greatest Hits" »

5th Birthday Week--Chris Hafner's Greatest Hits

As Car Lust's fifth birthday party continues--please celebrate responsibly!--it falls to me to talk about our founder Chris Hafner's contributions to the last five years.

Chris is, of course, the man who started Car Lust the blog (he told the blog's origin story in our 1,000th post), and he's written more of our content than the rest of us put together. He also deserves recognition as the codifier of "car lust" the idea: the notion that a car doesn't have to be an unattainable exotic or a 100% restoration to be desireable, interesting, or simply something we love.

Following, with apologies to David Letterman, are my picks for the Top Ten Chris Hafner Car Lust Posts:

Continue reading "5th Birthday Week--Chris Hafner's Greatest Hits" »

2007-2012: They Were Very Good Years (or Chevy Vegas & Other Delights)

Okay, so this won't be yer traditional (if a few posts over a five year span can even be considered 'traditional') Very Good Year™ post since A) I won't really be reviewing the various automotive-themed events that occurred during that time (save this one, obviously), and B) I've been mostly too busy Vega-engine-ad-800with Cars Gone By to pay all that much attention to what's been going on, and C) This is all about Us! Us! Us! anyway.

But heck, this is as good a time as any to look back on those ancient times and see where we've been and what I thought about them (after all, this post is just as much about Me! Me! Me! as Us! Us! Us!). Henceforth, this slight missive will mostly be just me bloviating on what I see as the best and brightest, perhaps not of our generation entirely, but at least of the lesser appreciated cars of our generation.

By the way, I looked it up and this is technically our Wooden anniversary blogiversary so make of that what you will.

And hey, go us.

Continue reading "2007-2012: They Were Very Good Years (or Chevy Vegas & Other Delights)" »

August 27 Weekly Open Thread--Happy 5th Birthday!

As of tomorrow, Car Lust is five years old. In most places, this is old enough to have graduated from Montessori preschool and be starting half-day kindergarten, so you could say we're maturing, becoming ever more sophisticated...kind a sense. Well, at least there's no disputing we've gotten older!

With that in mind, let's take a quick look back at that first day's postings from August 28, 2007, all of them written by our founder Chris Hafner, in their original order of appearance:


Audi RS6 Plus Avant

"...The RS6 is one of those rare machines that have no weaknesses--save price, anyway. Its immensely powerful twin-turbo 40-valve V-8 gives it the massive torque and high-end horsepower to bend the mind, blur reality, and give the impression that, rather than accelerating forwards, you've just driven off a cliff. But the Audi, thanks to the miracle of tenacious all-wheel-drive traction, is less likely than the JATO wagon to leave the driver spread all over the face of a canyon wall. And even if our thrill-seeker was accelerating uncontrollably towards a fiery demise, the Audi's aggressive yet subtle styling would ensure he'd look good doing it...."


1970 Chevrolet Chevelle SS454

"...The muscle car dysfunction is in my genes--when I was an infant, my father suffered from a severe mental illness, the primary symptom of which was his sad compulsion to install high-horsepower V-8s into Chevy Vegas while my mother and I watched from the trailer house. Perhaps as a result, few things get my blood pumping as much as the raw, visceral danger implicit in a classic muscle car; the rump-rump-rump of a high-performance V-8, the cheesy hood stripes, the promise of acceleration violent enough to detach a retina--it all forms a heady emotional mix that, say, a Mazda Miata can't begin to touch...."


Car Lust--An Introduction

1951 with suicide doors cropped"I'll be posting regularly in this space about my Car Lust, paying tribute to the various cars that I find, for whatever reason, intriguing and desirable in some way. They won't all be exotics, and at times the commonplace stars in our everyday lives may make an appearance.

"Car Lust will be a celebration of all things automotive--a glorious hymn to the beauty of internal combustion; a tribute to the poetry of a small roadster on a curvy mountain road; a visceral taste of hard acceleration. Or not. But at the very least I promise you'll get a reluctant glimpse into that dark place in my psyche that just can't get enough of Peugeots."


As usual, this is the place for trips down memory lane, or excursions into any other automotive topic that strikes your fancy.

--Cookie the Dog's Owner

Carspotters' Challenge #27--Romantic Comedy Edition

Today's challenge is a still from Murphy's Romance, a 1985 romantic comedy starring Sally Field and James Garner.

In this scene, Sally Field's character and her son are leafletting parked cars.The mix of cars in this scene is representative of what you'd see in parking lots in the non-road salt parts of the country during that era. Anything strike your fancy?

--Cookie the Dog's Owner

(Image obtained from IMCDB.)

Test Drive--2012 Chevrolet Malibu LT

At the beginning of last month, a 60-foot tree in my yard was shredded by high winds, dropping a couple thousand board-feet of lumber on the four cars then parked in my driveway. When it came time for my wife's Mazda 5 to go into the shop for roof repairs, the insurance company procured a rental car for her, a 2012 Chevrolet Malibu LT sedan.

The 'BuWe had the car over two weeks, and while my wife was behind the wheel for most of that, I did get a chance to drive it a bit. Here's what I found:

Continue reading "Test Drive--2012 Chevrolet Malibu LT" »

Wheaton, Illinois, August 17, 2012

My friend Walter Lundby came upon a car show in Wheaton, Illinois last Friday, and got a few pictures with his cellphone.  Here's some of what he saw.


Continue reading "Wheaton, Illinois, August 17, 2012" »

August 20 Weekly Open Thread--The Last Ride of Summer

Summer is almost over. Some of the kids have one more week of vacation, others start class this week; the band kids are finishing up band camp, and the football players have been doing two-a-days for almost a month. There's just enough time for one last ride, one last car show, one last cruise-in--like the one my friend Walter Lundby came across last Friday in Wheaton, Illinois.

Lineup 2
We'll have more of Walter's pictures later in the week.  For now, this is the place for your random comments on all things automotive.

--Cookie the Dog's Owner

Carspotters' Challenge #26--Parking Lots of the Magic Kingdom

Today's challenge comes from the parking lots at Disneyland, sometime in the middle of the last century.

Disneyland HotelDisneyland 4See anything interesting--besides the monorail, that is?

--Cookie the Dog's Owner

(Photos obtained from UltraSwank and Daveland.)

Pictured above: This is a forlorn Chevy Vega photographed by reader Gary Sinar. (Share yours)

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