Riz, In regard to your November editorial (Driver’s Seat, CT, Nov. 2012) … maybe we’re related. At the very least, we share the same affliction. Just one project? How narrow minded! Completed, maybe someday, but I doubt it. I’m a sucker for Craigslist. I check it constantly. If someone posts an ad for something 1972 or older, I’m drawn to it immediately. If the ad says bring a trailer, I’m on the phone for directions, right away.
Bonnie has known me for over 30 years, we’ve been married for 28. She should have known better. In that time, the only flaw I’ve seen in her is her choice in men. Case in point, recently she went over to California to visit her sister. I’m left home alone, just me and the dog. I check Craigslist on Friday night and I see a posting that goes something like this … “1969 Chevrolet C20 pickup. Four brand-new Load Range E tires, brand-new dual Flowmaster exhaust. Engine blew up (here’s the killer). Bring a trailer.” There were pictures – how come they always look better in the pictures than in real life? I’m in front of the computer, phone in hand, making an appointment to see it first thing in the morning.
Of course, I brought it home. I towed it home with my ’71 Chevy pickup, on my trailer, and when I got home I debated what to do with it. I elected to leave it on the trailer and see what happened when she got home. I thought it might not get any attention. After all, it’s a ’69, mine is a ’71, they are both white…
Well, Tuesday afternoon she gets home. She calls me at work. I figured she just wanted to let me know she got home safely. Wrong! The first thing she says is “What’s with the truck on your trailer?” My response … “I thought it would be better to discuss it in person,” which received the response “What’s with the truck?” I told her I rather thought of it as a neatly assembled pile of Chevrolet parts.
She wasn’t really mad about it, she’s used to it. She is no longer naive, however. The following weekend, we looked at the truck together. Armed with a sufficient supply of beer and wine, we decided this truck needed one of the spare small-blocks sitting in my shop, looking for a new home. The engine is in, and this truck will join my collection of projects in various stages of completion. The list is getting longer, a ’47 Chevy two-door sedan, in pieces; a ’56 Chevy 210 two-door sedan, about one-third done (sound familiar?); a ’66 Chevelle, about 90-percent done (how’d that happen?); a ’71 Chevy pickup, a parts chaser/tow vehicle getting ready for a redo; an ’86 Monte Carlo SS, bought new, has 243,000 miles and starting to get a little tired. That makes six – plus Bonnie’s Tahoe.
One difference between you and us is we live on 5 acres and I don’t have to worry about a full driveway (yet). Tell your wife she can stop searching to discover a cure, Bonnie says our affliction is terminal; I’ll keep doing this until the day I die. I hope you do, too, and I hope that day is a long way off as well.
Riz, It will not work, my friend. Your plan to slip in a project while the wife is at work, they know. You are pushing the edge, my wife and I have over 48 years together and I cannot count the projects I have driven home or hauled home and heard “what do you want with another vehicle with six or more setting in various stages of repair?”
I tried taking her out for a nice dinner and after we finished I asked her to drive home as I had purchased another project I needed to drive home. Oh, the weather got cool for a couple of days. I even have had man’s best friend give me away when I was parking my trailer behind the barn with an Effie project on it, damn dog never barked before.
Riz, You are not alone! I went to a Chinese restaurant one day and the fortune cookie said “A man who chases two rabbits catches neither.” Probably applies to a man with more than one project vehicle, none of them really get finished. I look at it this way, some people rescue pets that owners have abandoned. We just pick up a few projects that are maybe a foot or two from the crusher. I actually bought my ’54 F-100 panel out of a junkyard in Michigan. Two years later, the other 599 vehicles in that junkyard (’40s, ’50s, and ’60s) were gone.
I’ve searched the Internet for a possible cure for our affliction and found that a complete waste of time. I don’t think a cure actually exits, and just to show my bad attitude, don’t really care. Do you think my wife is trying to tell me anything when my last birthday present was a gift-wrapped brick?
Well guys, I'm glad I'm not the only one with this malady and I appreciate the advice and support. I Guess I'll wrap this up and check out Craigslist for a while, ya never know what ya might find ... RIZ