Friday Night Brights

The summer is here with two annual weekly events:the Saturday morning Farmers Markett and Friday night car shows. The first Friday night packed the downtown. Every restaurant was full, several businesses set up food tables for to-go, and the weather was perfect. Personal topper-craft beer week put Emmett’s excellent Victory IPA on special.

As a kid of the 60’s, your Dad was “A___ Guy”. My Dad was A Chevy Guy. Even though I’ve never bought a Chevy anything, I’m still A Chevy Guy too. This ’60 Impala 4 door is a tasteful example of why today’s slippery eggs are dull afterimages of true driving pleasure.

What initially attracted the Friday night Men’s Book Club to this vehicle was the two odd add-ons: an air filter for what had to be the oil line, and an odd-looking box up in the front drivers side corner. This street legal bat-outta-hell GTO with a state-of-the-art NOS system, roll cage, and five point race harnesses will do 0-60 in less time than it takes to say “0-60” . There’s a competition for beast cars like this where they run three 30 mile loops and have to shut off their cars and restart them each loop. The shove on this must be like being launched into space..

Yeh, this Corvair Monza had the “Unsafe at any speed” single link rear axles, but this was our unanimous choice for most-want-a-ride-in. The supercharged flat 6 has since been perfected by Porsche, and the Corvair is a lot closer to a 911 than anyone might think,  including steering feel for the road.

You never realize how pedestrian paint jobs are until you find the gems on Friday night. The depth of this burgundy brown Bel Aire finish was jaw dropping, and the custom fabricated aluminum engine bay almost made it seem like a svelt living thing.

Some cars you see and say, “What is it?” This ’51 Kaiser Henry J was designed by the same guys who did the Hudsons. A 2-door fastback with stubby rounded tail fins, it was sold in the Sears catalog as an Allstate, a Sears car. Maybe an owner of a Sears home should have one of these Sears cars for the driveway!

Being made entirely of compressed rust shaped around a Chrysler 225 slant 6, I had no idea it was even possible AMC Gremlins existed anymore. My first car was a Gremlin, the only car to ever Challenge the Chevy Vega and Yugo for Worst Car in the History of Man.


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