And so, I had my secondary personal luxury daily driver, and I did start taking it to car meets right away, where people would often mistake it as a limousine at first glance. At first it was actually getting pretty good mileage, like 15-17, but on occasion it would dip down to like 8-10, but it seemed the more the car was driven the better mileage it got for some reason, so I used it whenever could. I will say this car can be daily driven, I mean it does now only have 46k miles. But to all the naysayers that say you can’t daily drive a classic car, I did for a few months and it was pretty fun, but I honestly don’t drive very much overall so maybe that has something to do with it.
But the tires were awful, and made the car ride in the worst way. Every bump shook the whole car, and sometimes so much so it jerked the glovebox open. It also turned out that one of dash lights didn’t work, it needed a drivers side windshield wiper (replaced that), and the parking brake didn’t work, not because it was broken but because the pedal was no longer pulling the cable, which I guess wasn’t surprising based on the fact it hadn’t been used in at least 23 years, so I’ll get that fixed later, and a very small oil leak began but I know where it’s coming from so I can fix that next time I change the oil. But driving it? it was as close as you could get to automotive perfection when it comes to luxury, it’s like sitting on my own bed.
That being said, I couldn’t really drive through the curved back roads faster than the speed limit, because I would end up going into the opposite lane to stay on the road. And I tried to race a Tesla…twice, and I lost both times. the first time I didn’t want ride behind one, so at an entry ramp in the rain I floored it, spun the tires and almost lost control while the Tesla owner just gave me demented grin and bolted past me. The second time wasn’t really a race; a Tesla driver was just doing stoplight pulls and I just wanted to keep up with him. I did keep up but then realized that he wasn’t even paying attention. I admit, I’m just one of those guys that gets all weird and stubborn around electric cars, especially Teslas.
I did become a little discouraged when the car never won any prizes or awards, but it turned out that wasn’t really this car’s strong point, as not too long after someone approached me at a car meet and asked if my car could be shown in a film. As you can imagine I was more than happy to accept, I never thought this car would be in a movie or a TV show, but I was going to get paid so I figured that it would be an interesting at least, and while looking back I’m not sure I would ever be willing to participate in something like that again, it was pretty…strange. But it was honestly a whole experience on its own, so i’m saving that story for a COAL Capsule.
It never received any backlash from anyone I knew as far as I’m aware, but honestly I didn’t care if it did, I had never owned such a wonderful and relaxing car, let alone driven one. Few teenagers ever really got to own cars they truly wanted, and I was one of those few, I didn’t have just one but 3 types of cars I enjoyed driving. Not because I could afford them but because pure determination, good luck, and my love of those type of cars led me here. Other kids I knew had classic cars, classic Mustangs, classic trucks, an early 1970s Ford Bronco, I even remember a 1974 Charger and a 1965 GTO convertible, both of those cars actually belonged to their parents, but I bet it was still cool to drive them.
I had some truly great cars…but no one could know, because where I lived it seems to be frowned upon to have nice things like that. Last year when I tried to park the Chrysler right where I lived it got keyed a whole bunch, but I honestly did know if it was the neighbors or somebody else. So I ended parking it further away instead, and it now lives at my mechanics, which I’m perfectly fine with it staying there anyway. But I knew the same thing was going to most likely happen with the Lincoln even though it already had battle scars, so whenever someone talked to me when I was putting the tarp on before the rain or when I was around the car, I told them I was just watching over it for a friend.
But even so I kept going to events with it, and I tried to enjoy it the best I could, even with the fact that it never won any awards or that I worried about it on a daily basis. But I think my favorite was the Halloween meet (pictured above), only about 25 cars showed up but some of the Halloween car designs were really awesome, and it was basically an early treat or treating session for a bunch of people. All the people with cool cars gave out candy to the kids which was actually pretty fun, I loved watching some of the kids try to see over the massive hood and say “Oh my gosh, it’s so big!”. So while it wasn’t the most customized car there, it still got a good reaction.
But what I didn’t know was a few weeks after that things were going to sour in a pretty bad way, as in early November I would come out one evening to see that the drivers side passenger door window had been shattered, and some the paint on the same door had been chipped off. It was clear that someone had used a decent sized rock to do this, but I didn’t know when it happened or who would’ve done it since it had been parked for a week, so all we really could do file a police report. I had a similar experience before when the little Oldsmobile was had the drivers side fender damaged by a drunk driver and we never caught the guy, but somehow this felt worse, much worse, probably because someone damaged the car with intent.
All I could do after that was vacuum out all the glass, calm my mom down, and park it at my mechanics place, but on the way the broken dash light started working again, so the car did what it could to help me feel better, but at the end of the day I’d rather have a non-functional dash light that a broken window, but at least the amount of problems didn’t increase as I had bought expensive new tires for it a week prior. Unfortunately I also realized that I could no longer park my two classic cars where I lived, at this point I had tried parking on 5 different sides of road near where I live and all my vehicles had been damaged at some point, so this was when reality begin to sink in more.
I actually thought about trying to get whoever did it, except I was going to do the whole shebang; I was going to go after EVERYONE in town who did stuff like this. I would do some modifications to the Chrysler to make it an undercover police car, I mapped out a system on which I would preform certain actions in certain situations; I copied down some Washington state bills that restricted the police in certain ways to use them as reasons to justify my actions, and I had a map of the town showing where all the crime was happening over the last year or so, like vigilante justice type stuff. But then I added up all the police reports of similar incidents of the last year or so, and I stopped in my tracks.
The town where I live has a population of a little over 12,000 people, and when I compared the crime rate it was way too high for a town this size. This wasn’t the way it used to be, nor was it the way it should be, I had no idea how much vandalism was happening on a weekly basis. Then I remembered that it most likely had to be the college, as last year they stopped background checking people for any sort of crime, so every school year a bunch of creeps and vandals would repeatedly show up. Because there weren’t enough jerks actually living in town that would make 4 broken car windows show up in one day (but I shouldn’t hold my breath on that though), so I realized that it wasn’t a direct attack towards me, I just got unlucky.
It figures, if the car doesn’t have problems then someone just damages it, and my mechanics place is probably one of the safest places in town since he has infrared cameras and weapons, so that’s where both of these cars are going to live now. The Chrysler is almost done and my mechanic found a window for the Lincoln, he’s just waiting for better weather to install it, however I’m going to have the Oldsmobile transported to a friends house at some point so it can stay in a safe place until I decide what I want to do with it, and the Roadmaster will just be parked in a parking lot since it seems most of the vandalism happens to cars parked on the side of the road, but I can only hope that’s true at this point.
In December last year I began to ask myself some important questions: Why did I think buying this car would be a good idea? When had the town I lived in my whole life become so crime ridden? It sounds like self pity, and it honestly kinda was. I was angry at myself because I knew I didn’t have a strong foundation for taking care of 4 cars, or even 1 for that matter. I had 2 cars that couldn’t even be parked on public roads because people would lash out at them for one reason or another, and one of the reasons I had bought these cars to try and distance myself from the world around me because I didn’t like the current circumstances I was in, but in reality that only can so far.
One car had been neglected and poorly treated for the last 20 years while the other had been giving a nice home and well maintained it’s whole life, I never knew how much of a difference it really made until I saw it for myself, and I wish that the Lincoln could talk some sense into the Chrysler. But in reality if it was capable of talking what good points would it be able to make about me that I was different? This wasn’t a case where you could give me an A for effort, I know at the end of the day I’m never going to want to let go of either of these cars or any reason, because they gave so much happiness, power, and cultural capital that I couldn’t even imagine living without them after a while.
When I was younger I thought that the reason why people act like twits when they drive is because the vehicle in question promotes the idea to do so, but I eventually realized that a car never has given someone an entirely new personality, it merely just escalates the personality that they already had. And maybe that has something to do with the negative actions towards these cars, maybe I’m not someone who should own a classic car because of how I feel when I drive one, because I know that I car like this can repress one type of person and lead another type of person to it, regardless of who the person behind the wheel might be, which maybe part of the problem itself.
I will never truly know what the 1960s and 1970s were like, but I imagine these cars show off that era better than any other consumer product from the time, which is also the reason why these cars should be saved even if they weren’t made to last this long. But are someone’s actions ever the car’s fault? Just because I drive a car from those time periods doesn’t mean that I can be a twit, no matter how I dislike the current time period. So to what extent can the context of my situation save me from a metric ton of criticism? I don’t know, because at the end of the day everyone will tell you that it’s silly to buy a classic car as a daily driver, no matter how much you enjoy it or how much tools and mechanical knowledge you have, so judge me as you will.
I’m a good driver, but I’m not as good of a driver as I could be, even though my mom likes to tell me what a great driver I am. I don’t drink, or drive recklessly unless I have to, even though I know in some places you can be cocky in a classic car and no one wants to complain because they think “Cool Car = Cool Guy”. But it’s good to have the self control to not drive like that, and I’m not going to defend bad behavior because it’s immature when you drive recklessly or intoxicated, because no matter how crazy or cool your car is it doesn’t encourage you to be like that, it just gave you more power to do so and clearly on some level that was already the type of person you had a mind towards being, that’s why they say that YOU got into accident, not the car.
I’m using these articles so I can remember what getting these cars was like, as they are one of the things that I have a strong attachment to owning. Whenever I drive either of these classic cars, it’s the closest I can ever get to how I used to feel when I was younger and in that weird carefree state, because the “Good Old Days” for me was only around 5 or 6 years ago; it wasn’t perfect back in the 2010s but it was just better than the 2020s. Owning a classic car will always be enticing to me for other reasons besides the power, prestige and nostalgia. And no matter what car you’re buying, you should always give yourself an honest reason on what car and why, don’t lie to yourself or try to convince yourself something is true when it really isn’t. Nostalgia is a commodity, never forget that.
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