When not walking his namesake, helping out with the Boy Scouts, or attending to his day job, Cookie the Dog's Owner can be found hurtling down the twisty back roads of Ohio in a Volkswagen GTI Mk. V with Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers blasting out of the stereo. He learned to drive on a succession of pathetic mid-70s domestic cars, and his first true automotive love was a 1985 Honda Civic CRX. He is married and has two sons, and is philosophically opposed to automatic transmissions.
As always, this is the place to talk about whatever automotive thing may be on your mind.
We had our first meaningful snowfall this past week here in Ohio. Alex's school called off early in anticipation of a full-dress lake effectsnowpocalypse, but all we actually got was about an inch and a half. That's not to say we won't be getting our fair share of the white stuff in the coming months.
Turkeys on the way, on the way, way, way!/Turkeys in the car, in the car, car, car!/Start it up, off the clutch, anywhere you are/And hit up a tune called 'Turkeys in the Car.'
Here at the Car Lust family table, the turkey and dressing are the same as everywhere else, but the conversation tends toward the automotive. Feel free to discuss your favorite four-wheeled topic while you pass the mashed potatoes.
Here's hoping you have a good holiday and, if you're travelling like many of us will be, a safe journey.
Ladies and gentlemen, following up on yesterday's look at airport limos, we present to you the airport limo to end all airport limos, the sleekest and swankest jet age marvel ever to grace a terminal loading zone: the Jetway 707 built by American Quality Coach Corporation.
What was your first impression of this vehicle? Did you think, as I did, that it looked like an Oldsmobile Vista Cruiser that had been caught in a taffy puller, or pumped full of growth hormones by mad scientists engaged in diabolical avant garde experiments previously performed only on insects and other small, meaningless creatures?
Up until 1965, we were a one-car family, and Dad invariably drove the "Oldredford" to work. If we wanted to go shopping or to the doctor's office, or anywhere else during the business day, Mom called the Independent Radio Taxi Company and ordered up a cab to take us there.
Independent Radio Taxi operated a fleet of white-over-black Checker Marathons, with the firm name proudly hand-painted on the front door in three different fonts. (I've seen old photos from the era of Chevy sedans operated by Independent, but I only remember riding in Checkers.) Its major selling point was that its cabs were equipped with two-way radios, and could be dispatched to pick you up anywhere in the city on a moment's notice, with just one phone call to the firm's downtown office (RIverside 6-8844). There were other taxi operators in Youngstown, but I don't know if if any of them were up-to-date enough to have radios in their cabs; we always got our taxis from Independent.
The big Checker would appear in the driveway within five or ten minutes of Mom making the call--this was space-age efficiency at its finest!--and we would go out the front door and get in. The back seat of a Checker Marathon is a large space, and it's even larger when you are two or three years old. The cab had a two-way radio--just like an airplane!--and a fare meter with numbers that changed, and those were cool in their own right, but what really made it a great place for a kid was the fold-down jumpseats.
Hello everybody! Cookie the Dog here once again, with an important message.
Ever since I was a pup, I've been told that dogs can't drive. Thanks to the groundbreaking work of pioneering researchers in New Zealand, and the humans who have been assisting them, that conventional wisdom has been rendered obsolete:
However, our family's social conventions have not yet caught up to the settled science. Despite intense lobbying on my part, my Owner refuses to loan me the car keys and insists on driving everywhere we go.
There is, to put it mildly, no good reason for this. I have a valid license, my senses of sight, smell, and hearing are better than humans', I have previously demonstrated my profound knowledge of all things automotive on this very blog.
Please, just talk to him for me. I'm a good dog, I can handle the responsibility. I mean, what could go wrong?
This is also the place for you to talk about other automotive or canine topics.
"When I think of French cars, I think of many things--funky durability, quirky comfort, even slightly oddperformance. In every case, the distinctive Gallic eccentricity baked into French cars gives them an extra flavor that I find delicious.
Like an aged Roquefort bleu cheese, French cars have a strong flavor
and are certainly an acquired taste; but after you are accustomed to the
flavor, everything else tastes bland...."
The idiom "outside the box" or "thinking outside the box" is (over)used so much these days that the meaning has become diluted. It's reached the point where something's referred to as being "outside the box" when it's no more than mildly atypical.
Mon ami! Welcome to the Cafe d'Paris d'Car Lust. Have a seat here at one of the sidewalk tables, where you have a lovely view of the Eiffel Tower and can watch the traffic go by. Can I bring you something; some cognac, a baguette or two, some truffles, the EscargotMcNuggets perhaps?
As I am sure you are already aware, the cafes of Paris are famous for their brilliant intellectual conversation. At other cafes, they discuss art, literature, existential philosophy--but here, we speak of cars.
This week, we shall be speaking of the cars of France! [Insert "La Marsellaise" here.] Now, you Americans, you may think that the story of French cars begins with the Deux Chevaux and ends ignominiously with the Renault Alliance, but there is so much more to the tale of French cars than these two. It is too grand a saga for one week--a month would not be enough!--but we shall try to tell at least a small part of it.
If, however, you wish to speak of other things automotive, consider yourself welcome.
Our photo for this week comes from the Niagara Airport Drag Strip (later known as just the "Niagara Drag Strip") in Niagara Falls, NY, adjacent to the Niagara Falls International Airport. The dragstrip was just north of the airport perimiter fence. According to the "Sunday Niagara" website run by Dean Johnson, whose father owned the strip, it operated from 1961 to 1974, and was the site of the 1967 NASCAR Nationals. You read that correctly--NASCAR--yep, thatNASCAR--once was involved in drag racing, sanctioning a competition series from 1965 to 1967.
This photo of the strip's parking lot, which occupied the space between the dragstrip itself and the airport, looks to be from the early days, to judge by what's sitting in the lot and on the tarmac by the Air Reserve Station.