So .. I’m drunk …

1979 …. 19 fucking 79 …

1964 …

Bob Dylan is a somewhat polarizing artist. Not really because of his actions or politics .. but because he can’t sing. He’s a shitty singer. Fantastic song writer .. shitty singer. But .. much like Johnny Cash, this works with some (most) of his songs. One of my favorites ..

Another of my favorites … except this guy actually can sing. And pretty well too.

Fire lake is actually one of my all time favorite songs.

I’m not sure how many of you know or have guessed .. I’m 44. That puts my teenage years in the mid-to-late 80’s. 18 years old in 1990. That said, I have no memory of Bob Seger when he was “current”. It isn’t that I didn’t like him back then, just don’t know that I ever heard him back when we were mostly hostages to local radio. My music tastes back then was mostly southern rock. Classic rock. Non-Country redneck stuff.

Back then I drove something like this ..

smokey

Mine was brown. Tan interior. 225 Slant Six. 4-speed stick. It was one of two 80’s Dodge trucks I bought from my dad when he was done with them. When I took the ’82 off his hands in the late 80’s, he bought a 1988 Dodge fleet-side. I bought that one off of him too in … ’95 i think.

One of the funny things I run across at work is people that have owned just one (maybe two) cars in their entire lives. That’s insane. One of my coworkers recently bought a (nearly) new Toyota. Really nice car. Said it was the second car he ever owned. I said … wait. The car you were driving last week was the FIRST CAR YOU EVER OWNED?

Now I have to say, the guy is young. Mid 20’s. But ..

For fuck sake I’d owned three cars before I got out of high school.

I had a 1971 Chevrolet C10 Stepside

025

Mine was blue .. mostly. Blue and rust. Mostly rust. This truck had the distinction of being the first vehicle I hot-rodded. This fucking thing was fast as fuck. If it wasn’t running light-to-light races it was getting tinkered with. This truck taught me how to tune a carb. It also taught me why two-piece drive shafts suck ass for racing.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rj2CD5xgpNY

Probably my favorite car .. 1970 Chevrolet El Camino.

1970elcamino_7

It was not this pretty. It was primer gray. 350 w/ 2 speed Powerglide transmission. I loved this car. This car died twice.

I’d heard before (and since) stories about Chevrolet oil pump pickup tubes.

I’d never had one come loose. Well, never until this time. I-10 east of Houston. 75 mph. Back then I was very “in tune” with how my vehicles were running. You get this way when you’re always driving junk but you’re a pretty talented mechanic. The moment something felt “wrong”, I looked down just in time to see the oil pressure gauge fall to zero. FUCK> OH FUCK. Shut off ignition … shift to neutral .. FUCK FUCK FUCK FUCK .. traffic .. find the shoulder … FUCK FUCK. It really doesn’t take long for a Chevy 350 to eat itself once oil has been completely removed from the equation.

My dad never liked my love of old junk. He did however always scoop me out of the fire and he footed the bill to have my El Camino towed home.

Honestly, it was like losing a dog. It was a couple of days before I could bring myself to go open the hood on it. Its kinda funny now. These days I wouldn’t think twice about dropping 3 or 4 thousand dollars to put a motor in a car. Back then it only cost $300 to lay hands on a rebuilt 350 but I was a kid. $300 was a Goddamned fortune.

Again, my dad saved my ass. He knew a guy. Hooked me up with a motor. Now at this point I’d done several engine swaps growing up. However … this was the first I’d ever done by myself, in the yard instead of a shop with a winch hung in a tree.

I said that car died two deaths … The second death was permanent. Crash. Broke my heart. The engine lived on though. In that ’71 Chevrolet truck I mentioned.

Most everything I ever owned was old. Worn out. I never was (still ain’t) a body man. Can’t do body work. Can’t paint. I am extremely competent with a wrench. Everything I owned was as mechanically sound as I could make it with my budget.

As an example .. the 1971 Chevy truck. The front end suspension was completely shot. Upper control arm bushings were gone. Literally non-existent. You could hear the clunk when the weight would shift from accelerating to stopping. Here’s the thing … That truck drove dead strait down the road. Roughly a quarter turn of slack in the steering wheel but you could let go of the steering wheel and it would run straight down the road. It didn’t do that by itself. I aligned the thing. I made sure to pry everything to the rear when I adjusted it so it would be “correct” when it was under power.

The first really nice vehicle I owned was a 1966 Chevrolet Fleetside Shortbed.

66-c10-ken-s

That’s pretty close. Mine was black. It was a very nice truck. I didn’t build it though so it never really meant as much to me as the ’70 El Camino or the ’71 Chevy truck.

Now you take those .. and mix in the ’82 and ’88 Dodge trucks … and that covers until I was in my mid 20’s … well, mostly. I also had a ’73 Ford Maverick and a ’78 Malibu.

Holy shit this turned into a car post didn’t it.

Also, I didn’t schedule this post with Aggie. I hope she doesn’t get mad at me.

 

🙂

ArmedGeek

10 Comments

  1. Car posts are OK given your music choices…Blondie caught my eye, but Dire Straits made me remember. Bob Seeger was like George Thorogood. You liked him or you didn’t and there was no point arguing with others. Like talking about trucks…might as well be religion.

    • George Thorogood … I really don’t know that I’ve ever met anyone that didn’t like him or hadn’t heard him. Never found someone that heard and didn’t like.

      Might be the same way with Seger. Harder to have not heard Bob Seger though.

  2. Next time I drink … George Thorogood.

    Hello Josephine is probably my favorite … although after a quick look over the list … going to be a whole post.

  3. My first car was a 76 Pinto that I got for 150 bucks from a guy my father knew. I ran that thing for 5 years till it finally lost the battle to rust. I’ve never had a cool car. My current ride is a mini van. I have and still do have some cool bikes though.

  4. Loved the post. Grew up on a farm, seemed like we had tons of vehicles, always working on one or the other. Drove the stepsides, drove the straight up Chevy’s.
    I owned a blue El Camino. I was a fool and sold it. I have missed it often down through the years. That 350 was amazing.
    I drive a red Mazda pickup now…or a black Nissan. Neither has the cool factor of those cars of my youth. The music you picked wasn’t bad either…I am a year older than you, we share the same time-period, same view of most things. Thanks for the memory lane there Aggie.

    • Oh, I had nothing to do with this post. This was all Armed Geek 😉

  5. Good choice in music.
    I applaud the no Bob Dylan singing stance. How many times do I have to listen to that stupid voice? He should have been born a few hundred years earlier, he would have been a great poet and nobody would have had to pretend to like his voice.

    Now you know someone who’s heard him and still can’t stand George Thorogood. I always change the station fast when he comes on.
    Little Known Veeshir Vact, people used to tell me I looked like him.
    Then it was Tim Curry (in Clue, maybe Legend)
    Now, of course, I look like Uncle Fester.

    I can’t imagine only owning two cars by my middle 20s. Hell, I often own two cars at once. Right now I do.
    By the time I was 20 I had owned 4 cars, ’72 Dodge Dart (I killed a slant-6), Subaru (one weekend, bought it Friday, wrecked it Sunday), ’72 Chevelle (straight six, but it had hood locks and glass packs, the previous guy took his V-8 when he sold it) and a ’72 Cutlass Supreme. 350 Olds with a 4BBl. Loved that car. I was drifting before drifting was a thing (It’s always been cool), back when it was “Power-sliding”.

    I’ve always wanted an El Camino.
    I recently bought a 79 Caballero (GMC El Camino), that I found had a bad engine after the 15 day warranty expired.
    I got a Blueprint 383 stroker crank for it but the installation has been a freaking nightmare. 2 months later I’m still waiting. I’m really getting sick of mechanics telling me, “Almost done, I’ll work on it this weekend”.

  6. Love all the music, even the grating voice of Bob Dylan. I have my “Brothers in Arms” CD in the car right now.

    My uncle had an El Camino. We LOVED that car. He would pile ten of us (me and sister and a few cousins) in the back and take us to town for a chewing gum run. Gave us each a nickel and we would get three Bazooka pieces. Such great memories 🙂

    Oh, and I ain’t mad, AG. You saved my ass from posting!!

  7. 1971 Cutlass Supreme, chrome wheels, fat tires, the Who blaring from my 8 tack recorder…a case of cold beer in the back. Life was good in the late 70s, early 80s.

  8. A lot of great music. I agree with you about Bob Dylan’s voice, but it worked with a lot of his songs. Same way with Neil Young………………

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