Yesterday began, like any other: I woke up, took the dog for a walk, put on my pants and went out into the world. Actually, that’s not right, I put on my pants then took the dog for a walk. Then I bought a Volvo…
As I move through the seven stages of project car grief, I’ve gone from Saab stories to the stage of accepting RWD Volvos. I’ve spent the last few days thinking about 200 series cars, the 242 coupe in particular. But then I saw an assuming ad for a 740 turbo wagon for sale near me, which got me thinking about a similar 700/900 series wagon I saw at this year’s Swedish Car Day. I’ve emailed the seller and will hopefully have a chance to go take a look at it soon. But until then, enjoy this 740 turbo wagon.
So it’s been exactly too long since we last had an installment of Top Five Tuesday around these parts. I guess we’ve slacked off pretty hard. While it’s not exactly, Tuesday, I thought today would be a good day for some reflection. One of my new family’s traditions is to spend Thanksgiving morning reflecting on those things we’re thankful for. Maybe its the all the holiday wine, but I figured I might as well spend some time listing those automotive things I’m thankful for.
#5. The Automobile
Duh. Seems pretty damned obvious, but were it not for the automobile I’d have to find something inane like professional football to obsess about. My friend Ryan recently put it best, ”I love cars. I can’t help it. I get behind the wheel and even in traffic, I still feel like, ‘This is way faster than I could move, by my own power.’ I feel like I’m in charge of this machine that weighs tons and it’s like beautiful and makes all this noise. I just love cars.” Yeah, man, me too, me too.
#4. My Fellow Car Bloggers
Real menschs like Jim over at Tamerlane’s Thoughts, Peter at Car Envy (happy 5th birthday, btw!), Alan at Autoneurotic Fixation, and Drew and Crew at Motoring Con Brio are the reason I got into blogging and why I keep at it. While I don’t actually know any of you in real life — and I’m hardly in your league — I am thankful for your fantastic work, which challenges and inspires me daily. Keep it up.
#3. Project Cars
Here’s to one of life’s great extravagances – project cars! For many, the car is merely a means of transportation, a necessity, and often little more than a bother. For irritating car guys, an old rusty, leaky and weezy jalopy is just the sort of thing to get us excited! We see potential where others might see scrap metal waiting to be recycled into dishwashers. We see excitement in the most mundane Volvo wagons, Ford Rangers, and mid 80s Japanese economy cars.
#2. This Blog
It’s been a great two years since I started this blog! It has provided me with an outlet and was an important creative space for me while I was in the doldrums of a long, drawn out, and often times depressing, job search. Recently, with the help of Tim, this site has also grown and gotten better, and for that I’m grateful too.
#1. Car Guy Friends
Jim, Zo, Jesse, Ryan, Tim and Jon, these are my car buddies, affectionately known as the Douchebags. They’re awesome. As I’ve dipped my toes into the world of wrenching on my own cars, the Douchebags have been hugely helpful. I’m thankful for their generosity in time, expertise and good natured ribbing. Once I’ve got my own project car, I’m sure I’ll get by with a little help from my friends. What a bunch of Douchebags.
With Jim’s recent purchase of an ’84 8 valve turbo, I’ve got the 900 bug again. Badly. So this week has had me busily checking Craigslist for a cheap, not too rusty 900. I found three interesting contenders and even went and looked at one today.
This Edwardian Gray ’88 SPG in BFE Maine was the car that got me going. I emailed with the seller and based on his description, it sounded rustier than I wanted to deal with. Plus it’s almost four hours away from my homebase. Still at $1,800 one could do worse right?
My problem? Car magazines, especially expensive British ones…
Here we go again, the Subaru is back drawing blood and causing problems. This time though I’m working on the inside, trying to modernize my car to play nicely with my iPhone and iPod. On the frustration level of 0 to “Goddamnit you miserable !@!$#@$” this was probably a 7 or 8, solely because of one very stubborn radio connector and my own, well documented ineptitude. Brace yourself, it’s time for another misadventure in-car repair!