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Posts Tagged ‘Ford’

We all remember our firsts, right? First kiss, first friend, first job, and what about your first car! You thought I was heading somewhere else, right? Well, walk with me down memory lane for a bit, because today is International Bacon Day, and I’m living in the South now; and we consider bacon a major part of the food triangle, or plate, or whatever… , but hey who doesn’t like bacon!

Not sure why August 31st received this honor, probably some meat-middle-manager’s idea of a joke, but it seems to be catching on. And it was seeing how Ford was celebrating the day for all things bacon, offering a special decal for their Ford Fiesta, that got me thinking. All vegans please look away now:     bacon---profile-1377696523

I thought back to Bob’s first car, a Ford Galaxy. It was the 60s, of course, so he and his friends decided to papier mache his little hot rod in paisley! Here is what he had to say about it, and since it’s in a language I don’t understand called auto-speak, I’ll quote,

“It was my first car, a 1960 Ford Galaxy 500, with a 390 cu in engine, dual Holley four-barrel carbs, and a Hurst four-speed shifter.”  Paisley Ford 1969 B

I never got to ride in that baby, we had broken up when we left for college, and he had gone the way of Woodstock. Alas. That’s him in the black shirt upper right, looking like a Sgt Pepper’s cover shoot. You can get a glimpse of the colorful paisley hood in the front of the picture.

I was one of the rare few with a car in high school. It was an ancient red Renault that I inherited from a brother who either went off to college or to a kibbutz and left me in charge of it. It was super tiny for the day, about the size of a Mini Cooper that was swimming around with huge Caddies and their sharp fins.  I remember swerving through puddles and playing that game where you stop suddenly and everybody jumps out and rearranges themselves in the car, like circus clowns. Oh yeah, I packed people into that beauty!

Yes folks, that was the worst of my teenage crimes against humanity. I left it to others to drive across the state line for a beer run, my stepfather was a judge, so that just wouldn’t do.

My moment of grace was when that same brother, Eric, taught me how to start up the Renault on a hill. We pulled up to a stop sign at a very good angle, pulled up that little parking brake, and since i didn’t know any better, I just kept trying. We inched further and further backwards down the hill, until I finally got the synchronization of brake, clutch and gear. Thank you for your patience big brother!

It wasn’t until later that I learned that not “all girls” knew hot to drive a stick shift on the floor. Was the automatic shift invented when more women started driving or something? The Bride informed me that she was the only one of her friends who could drive a shift. Let’s hope our little Baby Bug will have the opportunity to learn about a four speed stick. Here is the cutest 1 year old in her latest big girl ride! Now, go and cook some bacon! photo

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Progress. It’s here to stay; technology races further ahead than most of us can imagine. How to stay at the cutting edge, how to know what’s next. Should we get the smaller “Tablet,” the thinner “Laptop?” One of my first newspaper articles in the 80s came about because I was tending a wood stove while Bob was carting his first “At-Home” computer up the stairs to his office. The juxtaposition of these two events piqued my funny bone. Bob likes to tell the story of the man who sold buggy whips.

He made the best, most beautiful buggy whips around. Just the right length, real leather, with handles that were oh, so ergonomically correct. The problem was it was 1896 and Henry Ford had built his first Quadricycle. You can see what’s coming, right? “And as the Quadricycle began to attract public attention, investors were intrigued. With the backing and influence of the mayor of Detroit, Henry Ford incorporated his first automobile company, the Detroit Automobile Company, in 1899. It had a short life, but Henry Ford’s career as an automaker had begun.” Who wants to be the buggy whip guy at the dawn of the automobile age?

Warning – Bob stop reading now! I just heard about a book I think I’ll be stuffing in Bob’s Hanukka stocking. “The Disappearance of Darkness” by Robert Burley http://darkness.robertburley.com is about the end of the analog photography era. When we were first married, Bob always longed for a dark room in any house we looked at. It didn’t have to be much, maybe a closet, a place where my amateur photographer could develop his film. It seems truly amazing that in the last 7 years Eastman Kodak has gone from being a top Fortune 500 company to a buggy whip. Steve Jobs was the Ford of our day.

Video stores and record stores are closing, maybe even bookstores? When you can make a memory book of photos for a Great Grandma, then type a little more and have my holiday cards done sealed and delivered (thank you Shutterfly); if our music can come from a cloud, what’s next?
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