Ya know, over the years I have had so damn many rigs that I literally can’t even remember them all.
I do distinctly remember tallying them up once about thirty years ago after I had totalled my latest piece of shit while driving like a maniac an at that point I had either wrecked or totalled 29 vehicles in a span of ten years.
If I had to guess I’m pretty sure that at this point I have had at least one vehicle for every year that I have been alive and that would be 60.
Now you know why I can’t remember them all. There are several that stand out and boy howdy are there some whopper stories behind those.
This little bit of confession and recollection just came about as I was outside having a smoke and a cup of coffee on a very foggy morning. At least it’s just fog and not smoke like a couple months ago.
As I was standing there looking around, keeping an eye on the hood as I normally do, I noticed that I have two GM products nose to tail out front now.
The first rig I ever owned was a 66 Chevy pick up with a 283 V-8 in it. When I got done with it, the left front tire was stuffed up underneath the cab and the front end was sitting on the bumper..
Some guy pulled out in front of me trying to cross five lanes of traffic after I had just passed someone at about 80 mph..
There was no where to go except oncoming traffic and I hit that 72 Olds Station Wagon so hard it blew all the windows out of the back, knocked it fifty feet and spun it around up aginst the guard rail pointing the way it had come from.
That one was ugly.
Then it was POS after POS for years.
I’ve had a few decent cars over the years but the majority of them were junkers.
This is why I have been a mechanic for 40 years.
I couldn’t afford to pay someone to work on them so I learned the hard way. It got to the point that as soon as I got one I would immediately run down and get the Chilton or Haynes manual for it.
Then back in 1989 I was given the opportunity to go back to school and get a formal education to work on the newer vehicles. Something I will be forever grateful to my Aunt for.
I went to the local Community College and took General Automotive classes for a year at a two year college.
After the first year I was given a rare opportunity to join a Ford Motor Company sponsored two year program that was only open to 24 people every two years and you had to get a sponsorship from a Ford Dealer to get in.
I started back to school in between those two years so it didn’t open up until I had already been there.
Long story short, I kicked the shit out of that program because I was already 29 years old when I started, was an avid learner and had already had ten years of experience working on shit.
I graduated with honors, got an Associates Degree in Automotive Technology, had a 3.71 GPA after 3 years in a 2 year college.
Then I went to work at a local Lincoln/Mercury dealership for the next 9 years.
As you can imagine, I was a die hard Ford fan by then.
After 9 years of the vehicles getting smaller and lower to the ground and inconceivably more complicated, I had enough of that and moved back to working on Construction equipment which is what I had been doing the previous nine years.
Twenty years later, I’m standing out in the fog having a cigarette when this scene jumped out at me.
I had to chuckle at the irony.
I had enough of Ford and their Better Ideas a long time ago.
The things are just miserable bastards to work on and seem to need fixing three times as often as the Chevy’s I have owned, plus the parts are three times as expensive too.
Another bit of irony, I told you about my first rig being a Chevy pick up, that one in the back there may just be my last vehicle and it is also a Chevy pick up.
God works in mysterious ways but he sure does have a sense of humor.