Curbside Classic Capsule: 1962 Chevy C10 Pickup – Saint Patina of Goodwill

Yes, I’m a fan of patina, if it’s been come by honestly. And this old Chevy truck has earned it more honestly than any other possibly could. If it were possible for a vehicle to attain sainthood, this truck would be canonized by now. Or at least its owner. And I can be a witness to how it’s earned its patina and sainthood.

For at least 15 years or more, I’ve seen this truck parked at various Goodwill drop-off points; those empty trailers parked in a lot where folks come to dispose the detritus of modern life that still has value (an decreasing reality given the cheap stuff we mostly buy now).  And sitting motionless in the pickup was a thin, older man, dressed and looking like someone from the 1930s Great Depression. Old-style dark twill work pants with suspenders and a long sleeve shirt. Old leather shoes. Hair combed and held in place with Brylcreem. I interacted with him a couple of times when I availed myself of his services. I’m not sure whether he was a volunteer or paid, but I’d like to think the former.

When I spotted his truck in front of the Goodwill offices, I decided I better memorialize him and his truck before he gets in it one of these days, starts up the old six, and they are both ascended into heaven.

Something tells me quite strongly that these two have been bonded for a very long time. Possibly since the truck was new, but more likely it was bought used. He strikes me as thrifty to an extreme, something that’s quite unusual nowadays.

The plates are genuine old-timers, not the ones folks buy to affix to their vintage toys.

The interior says it all. I think of all the thousands of hours he’s sat quietly and patiently here while waiting for someone to show up with a donation. Maybe he studied Zen Buddhism in his younger days.

Ideally he’d be working for St. Vinnie’s, the competing local outfit that does similar things. Actually, our St. Vinnys is a powerhouse, having built many low-income housing projects and many other useful activities. It’s a coincidence that  they have a store right next to the this Goodwill store and offices.

Why didn’t I take a look into the topper? It’s a bit newer than the truck. He probably decided he wanted to keep his wood floor from rotting out, among other reasons.

1962 is the year Chevy ditched the weird eyebrows on the top of the hood, and went with a more conventional flat affair. The inevitability of there being a six under the hood of this one is absolute. The last year for the venerable 235 inch “Blue Flame” six.

It’s hard to tell what color this was originally, but I do see a few patches of that very common green that so many of these sported.

Even our healing rains can’t stop all of the forces of entropy.

Good luck in trying to fake this kind of patina. There’s only one way: the hard way. Sitting out in a parking lot for decades in the sun and rain.

I hope to keep seeing him and his venerable truck for as long as possible.