A Glance in the Rearview . . .

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Here’s a story for those under 40 – of what it was like to be seventeen 40 years ago.

We got our licenses at sixteen. Not a restricted license. A license just the same as the ones our parents had. We could drive anywhere we liked, just like they could. As far away as we liked – and at night, if we liked. With as many of our same-age friends as we liked.

Naturally, we liked to drive.

And what we drove!

One of my high school amigos drove a 1971 Plymouth GTX with a big block 440 “Super Commando” V8 engine and 375 horsepower. In the early ’80s, this car was just a used car. A car that a seventeen-year-old could afford to buy.

Today it is a car that few 57-year-olds can afford to buy.

Seventeen-year-olds worked at fast food joints in those days, to earn the money needed to buy a car like a used ’71 GTX. These days, adults work at fast food joints to earn the money they need to be able to eat there.

Another high school friend of mine had a solar gold ’78 Trans-Am with T-tops. It, too, was just a used car by 1983 and not beyond the means of a high school kid working an after-school/weekend fast food job.

We used to hang out at the fast-food joint on Friday and Saturday nights, the hoods of our cars open so as to show off the new manifold or set of headers we’d installed. Impromptu street races began here, too. We’d head out to the then-empty (now jam-packed) Dulles Toll Road, which led from the periphery of civilization to what was then way out in the sticks, where the only thing around besides the chiggers in the bushes was the lonesome edifice of Dulles International Airport, lit up like Speer’s Cathedral of Light.

You could drive right up to terminal and just park – no Hut! Hut! Hut! You could walk along the periphery to within sight of the main runway – and watch the Concorde arrive or (much better) depart, its four afterburners glowing as the great bird took to the sky.

One night, we were cruising around in the GTX. This is what seventeen-year-old boys did in those days, in order to meet seventeen-year-old girls, just maybe. Who might be interested in riding with us, in the mighty ’71 Plymouth. We didn’t find any girls that night. But we did find an older guy (to us, at the time – the guy was probably 30) driving a brand-new 1984 Corvette. This was pretty much the hottest new car available that year and the first year for the  C4  bodystyle – which succeeded the iconic “shark” bodied C3s that dated back to the same era in which the GTX was born.

The C4 was radically different – the first modern Corvette. It had huge (and directional) Goodyear tires, VR-rated to 150 MPH, a digital dash and a Crossfire Injected V8. But was it a match for the ’71 GTX?

Nose-to-nose and side-by-side at the light. The ‘Vette lost us at first, having the advantage of those huge Goodyears to put down the 205 horses he had available. The GTX’s 375 horses mostly went up in smoke on account of the fourteen-inch wheels, but that was what made cars like it so much fun. We were tail-out, headed sideways as the ‘Vette’s four round tail-lights receded into the distance. But then the GTX got its footing and those 375 horses began to gain on the ‘Vette’s 205.

We caught up as the needle swung past 120, the 440 bellowing like a berserker through its four barrel carb and uncatalytically converted dual exhaust. This was right about the time the front end of the Plymouth began to get light; you could feel it beginning to rotate  through the overboosted power steering. Connection to the pavement was being lost. The 440 was about to make the GTX do a short-lived imitation of the Concorde on its take-off roll.

There was no “advanced driver assistance technology” back in ’83. And that was also part of the fun of cars like this. The only remedy was to ease back on the throttle, bleed some speed and let the GTX settle itself. Which it did, after a few long seconds that seemed like minutes. The ‘Vette’s driver won that race, but we won a memory of the time.

This probably explains our generational nostalgia for those times. Not so much because we were seventeen, then. But because seventeen-year-olds were able to experience such things, then.

It was a time of adulthood beginning at sixteen, the world opening up before us. We may not have been able to text one another.

But we had something much better.

. . .

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  1. It was a better time. Cars were less refined, no doubt, but they were more fun and much more emotional. My dad had a ’73 RS and at 16 and one month he let me take it out for a drive to pick up my friend on the north side of town. I ended up off-roading it, by mistake, and doing a 180. But I hit nothing and spent the next hour and a half washing the car to remove all the debris. I remember asking my friend if the car looked like it was riding low, as if a suspension piece had been broken. He didn’t think so, but there wasn’t a chance in hell I was going to say anything to my dad and he and my mom took off for their night out.

  2. You guys worked on your cars and us girls did not but we drove long distances in newer safer cars and still had a great time. Driving hundreds of miles to and from college, no cell phones of course. At night Or any time and we were never scared. Today I never leave home without a bottle of water and cell phone. In case anything happens. Back then I never took water with me! The kids ask but how did you drive around with no gps? My answer is well we did and we never got lost and never worried abut getting lost either. See thats the thing, before gps we had to rely on ourselves and that gave us the confidence to believe we could figure. stuff. out. Which is why we acted and felt more like adults at age 16 than most 25 year olds today.

    • I agree, RS –

      We had to figure it out. That led us to us being confident in our ability to do just that. The youth of today is taught to let technology figure it out for them. Cue H.G. Wells and the Eloi.

    • LOL, RS! Gee…when I was a teen and got my first clam boat, never having even driven a boat before- I figured out how to navigate with a chart and a compass (I mean literally, just figured it out…no internet or Youtube or anything back then). Now people think you have superpowers if you can just read a street map!

  3. Some enthralling tales, Mr. Peters!

    Also, as a 57 year old writer, prolifically cranking out engaging articles while remaining heroically active and sharp, you are an inspiration to your younger audience. I can vouch for that.

  4. “for those under 40 – of what it was like to be seventeen 40 years ago.

    I’m over 40 and Gen X but I was 8 years old 40 years ago. It would be a whole ‘nuther lifetime (at the time) until I got my license. By then, the muscle cars of the day had mostly been used up and it was on to the import cars.

    By the time I was getting my license, if you wanted a big V8, get the 5.0 Mustang. A lot of kids did. I remember one who did and killed himself/passenger/on coming driver street racing it on a curvy road.

    Though times were already a-changing, the Gen X spirit was still alive as we had no sail fawns. We didn’t have innuh-net. Most of us didn’t have cable TV. If you wanted to entertain yourself, you had to find something to do. We also did not have helicopter parents. Many of us were able to tell our parents one thing and go do another thing entirely.

  5. Nice article, Eric.

    I reached driving age in 1990 in the US, and back then, my license was a full drivers license. It did have some nonsense attached to it, like any alcohol container in the car, like a wine bottle in the trunk, was an automatic DUI for someone under 21, but that’s just some blue-law nonsense from New England. I was a dirt poor immigrant, so I didn’t have a car until I hit my 20’s, but I did work any job I could find; newspaper dņ ūņelivery, laundromat cleaning, random young kid jobs all over town, and by the time I was 20, I squirreled away enough to buy a cheapo car, no debt. (1985 Pontiac T1000, basically a Chevette).

    • Ha! I got cut off.

      Today, I see kids of driving age being uninterested in driving, too many rules. Uber is more convenient, as is bumming a ride from parents, but both of these come without the kind of freedom of mobility that your own car brings. You can’t store your crap in the trunk to be available wherever you go.

      That 15 year old car broke down a lot, but it was simple to fix. I learned about doing brakes, tuning carburetors, fixing all manner of breakage on that thing. I had to do that because I couldn’t afford to pay someone to do it, as you mention. Those were good times.

      Today, cars are so expensive, young people can’t afford them. The complex systems mean that old cars are uneconomical to maintain, so the source of affordable (old) cars for kids is gone, and despite prices going up, and cars getting more luxurious, they’re lasting increasingly less time. That T1000 may have been a piece of junk, but the important things were metal, and the plastic things were cosmetic, so it was serviceable, as long as you were willing to go to pick-and-pulls, as there wasn’t much in there that was important which degraded on its own.

      • What saddens me almost as much as what we’ve lost, is the way the young’uns have it today!

        I bought my pick-up about a dozen years ago from a 15 year-old. It wasn’t good enough for him, he was moving up to a Hummer. Don’t know if Mommy was paying (Or should I say ‘the taxpayers whom mommy works for) or if the kid will be going into debt at the ripe old age of 15 to pay for the new ride and the very expensive insurance on a ‘nice’ vehicle and a 15 year-old driver…buit either way, it’s sad.

        Ya can’t really buy cheap cars anymore- pretty much anything cheap is either in need of or will be soon of some expensive reapirs that the average person can not do themselves….but a $3K car and it’s pretty much a piece of junk now-a-days that ya have to throw away the first time it breaks down….’cause head gaskets or trannies or ECU repairs cost thousands.

        When I was 15 I considered myself lucky to have a 10-speed bike…having moved up from single-speed kiddie bikes and walking…… It might not have been glamorous…but in retrospect, it was very healthy…very economically sound……and offered a lot of freedom (i.e. no license; no insurance; no registration; no tickets….).

        When you have a Hummer at 15 (or even a decent F250) what’s left to look forward to when you’re 27 or 35?

  6. “Cash for Clunkers” killed off a lot of the ‘big iron’ that was popular with my classmates back in college…buddy had a ’73 Catalina coupe you could live in…and sometimes he did.

    Thanks to a rich relative I got a brand new 3rd generation Camaro as my first car at 16 but it turned out to be such a POS I had to dump it around 5 years later.

    Had that relative gifted me a used 1st or 2nd generation I bet I’d still have it.

  7. Geez Eric, almost getting misty eyed with nostalgia for what we’ve lost.
    My first car was a ‘57 Ford hand me down from the parents; would take it out on the Garden State Parkway to see how fast I could go – this was in the 60’s, long before hut-hutting became standard procedure for AGW’s. When I went off to college in Boston you could take the Eastern Airlines shuttle from Newark for $12. No TSA groping, get right onto the plane. Plus you could go out on the observation deck at either airport and watch the planes takeoff/land. It’s sad and infuriating how many freedoms have been lost since then.

  8. I got my learners permit in Pennsylvania 2 months before my 16th birthday. I passed driver education that spring and got my license in the summer of 1991. I was able to get a Senior license at 17 because I took driver ed and had no tickets.

    My time was a time of crappy econoboxes—Ford Escorts and Tempos, Chevy Cavaliers and Chevettes, K-cars, Omnis, and Horizons—and cracker box Caprices, LTD Crown Victorias, Marquis, and minivans.

    Said cars could be had used for less than $5000, many for less than $1000, and $10 filled up the tank for the week.

    And you wanted to get your license, get a car, and a job so that you could be grown up, buy cool stuff, and hang out with your friends at the mall, arcade, or pizza place.

    But today’s kids don’t need to go anywhere to hang out—and it isn’t cool anymore to have a car.

  9. Good article and all good comments. I remember those free range days too. Go anywhere and do anything as long as you didn’t get in ‘trouble’, made it home for supper and bedtime.
    Me and my cousins (six or seven of us) would load up into one of the big cars sitting around at grandmother’s house and drive to Little River Canyon. All the aunts and uncles visiting, kids out of their hair. Pretty sure everyone was sneaking a little pot smoke, but didn’t let me in on it. Probably didn’t trust me, lol.
    Also, remember my daddy and brothers going with granddaddy to blow up beaver dams. They were flooding parts of his cotton fields. I always wanted to go, but never got to. Granddaddy probably bought the dynamite at the hardware or feed store, probably kept some in the barn too.
    Almost total freedom back then.

  10. Hahaha the reason that few 57 year olds can afford them now is because of what had been done to so many of them by so many 17 year olds over the years.

    I was a year old then, but at 17 in 1999 I was doing the same thing in a 1967 Buick Skylark. Filled the tank three times a week but who cared at 95 cents a gallon? A select few of us elder Millennials got a small taste of the good life pre-9/11.

    Turned 40 this year and now I’m out with my own kids in a 1970 Cutlass Supreme. There are a lot of classics in my area so it feels like being part of a club. Lots of waves and thumbs-up. My daughter is 8 and she’s starting to get pretty good at naming years and models. I always chuckle though when she excitedly points out an “old car” and it’s something like an 80s IROC or Monte Carlo SS. Leaves me feeling old.

    You can get that “modern” Corvette for peanuts now. If the dash still works, just wait a bit longer.

  11. Born raised an still live in the land of fruits an nuts ,NO BETTER place to have been
    A Kid in the years of the REAL EXPERIENCE OF
    FREEDOM ,The years of the best radio jockeys an cars 1968 to to 1990
    That came with DRIVING ANY TYPE OF
    Started pumping GAS in 1975
    15 years old ,bought so many cars an trucks an VANS
    RACED AT Carlsbad raceway
    Motocross an Drags
    Raced across the Coast Dunes to the Best DUNES GLAMIS to an across into Mexico for dog meat Tacos . Flown in the coolest biplanes open air built all most every type of engine made an to day still own a Ford bronco built to cruse the Rubicon in Lake Tahoe
    Pulling my GET OFF ROAD Trailer i build that puts the 20.000 $ bs trailers to shame
    Drove the coast of California in a 69 Plymouth Cuba slant 6 ,not a hotrod but so damn cool of a car that i put over 200.000 twice over after two rebuilds ,The Coast run to CanaDA
    Owned Harley’s ,now ride a very cool motorcycle called a URAL with a side car that is two wheel drive an is the purr-fect Coast Cruzer today with these F!!!??GAS PRICES

  12. I remember in the early 80s my friend got a Montego that he spray painted flat black. That was such a cool ass car. I inherited my mom’s 73 Catalina. I sorely miss those daze of cool cars and FREEDOM!

  13. Another generation back, and my recently late father never took a drivers license test. When he got his you just bought one, like a hunting or fishing license, and he never let it lapse.

  14. I didn’t spend more than about $600 on a car until I got married, or nearly so.

    Most of the cars I bought were $200 or so – a list: ’64 chevy shortbed, ’63 chevy shortbed, ’67 dodge van, 72 olds 98, ’68 chevy van, 73 olds cutlass.

    I’d buy them, fix them a bit then sell them.

    never had trouble finding/getting wheels back then.

  15. Eric, this is a beautifully written piece that I shared with every other guy I know. I was once a Journalism major and have Bruce Porter and Anthony Mancini’s lessons in me to appreciate great writing. Thank you for painting such a wonderful world that is now long gone but was relived for just a minute in this dark time.

  16. Got a 68 Chrysler 300 when I was 15 (1985). It was red on red on red. Even the steering wheel was red! Her big 440 and high gear rear end meant she could easily pass 120. We used to take road trips in her that were one helluva good time. I had a voluptuous girlfriend with a set set of dd’s and thick, firm thighs. Many were the times I would cruise that big 300 with her head on my shoulder, my left hand on the wheel, and right hand caressing her leg listening to the throaty obbligato of that massive V-8; oftentimes whilst swilling a tallboy Falstaff on some back country road. Those were the days!

  17. ‘lit up like Speer’s Cathedral of Light’ — eric

    None of us were around to see the Cathedral of Light in the 1930s. But it led to a droll story:

    The searchlights were borrowed from the Luftwaffe, which caused problems with its commander Hermann Göring, because they represented most of Germany’s strategic reserve. Hitler overruled him, suggesting that it was a useful piece of disinformation. “If we use them in such large numbers for a thing like this, other countries will think we’re swimming in searchlights.”

    Compare “Joe Biden,” ostentatiously handing over America’s missile inventories to the Ukies, while emptying the Strategic Petroleum Reserve. We aren’t “swimming in missiles,” or oil either. And everybody knows it.

    “Biden” doesn’t even approach Adolf H’s competence, which was at least average until he made the fatal blunder of getting into a two-front war. For us, a crappy one-front war in the Ukraine could end up taking down “Biden’s” Potemkin village of a country, hollowed out from the inside by its drowning-in-debt US clowngov.

    • The liars who taught us that there’s a “covid pandemic,” that “vaccines” are safe and effective, that “elections” are fair and accurate, that CO2 is deadly and changing the climate, that Whites owned and operated the African slave trade (actually jews did), that “gun control” is good and constitutional, etc etc, are the SAME LIARS who taught us that Adolf Hitler “made the fatal blunder of getting into a two-front war” (as you put it). TRUTH: The jews’ Soviet Union was amassing materiel on the border for an overwhelming attack against Germany. If Adolf Hitler had not ordered the pre-emptive strike, all of western Europe would have joined eastern Europe under the mass-murdering barbarism of the jewSoviet. Germany led by Adolf Hitler SAVED western Europe. The SAVE was temporary, of course, as jews also controlled the west, but in the west the jews still had to pretend to be Whites and so they had to creep their “Communism” upon us instead of committing jewStalin’s full-blown mass-murdering of Whites and other nonjews. General George Patton, a great White man, realized this truth right at the end of fighting in Europe in 1945, and he said so, and he was “accidented” for doing so.

      As a related aside, my latest post is about documented jews — mostly secret jews — in the early USA. https://mywhitetv.nfshost.com

  18. I failed to mention in my earlier post that I had a buddy who bought one of those 84 Vettes back in the 90’s with the 350 and auto and the problematic digital dash (both long gone, the car sold and him dead of cancer a couple years ago). As I remember it handled well but was a tight fit for tall people. He might have put it on the track a couple times years ago though.

  19. Nice article Eric, should be a must read for those under 40. Another thing about that time, many of us began actual driving before we had our license. If the po po pulled you over there were no beatdowns, or hut hutting. That was basically unheard of. If your ‘papers’ weren’t in order, you mostly got a warning and sent on your way. Its crazy the world we had, thats been destroyed by the death of a thousand cuts.

  20. Good stuff Eric. The safety cult has taken over. It’s our job to teach our youth how to avoid it. And more importantly, have their back, if/when they get in trouble, which is what it’s called now. Being pre-emptive helps too.
    I local cops/teachers knew to leave our group of kids alone, and they did.
    You have to be willing to put your clout/mettle on the line, and make sure the kids know what/why you are doing for them.

    • Ha! That reminds me, Chris, of a sickening story I heard from my neighbor’s 20-something year-old girlfriend, who was telling me about her younger brother and how he had gotten a ticket for going a few miles over the speed limit one day…and how he was now in “trouble” at home, and how it was ‘good’ that he got that ticket, because “He has to learn to obey the laws and be a responsible person…yada yada…” To be clear, the kid wasn’t out sliding around the streets wreaking havoc or doing 100MPH on a residential street…he just got caught doing like 5 MPH over the speed limit as he was going to work or something……

      These are the kinds of people we have to live amongst. If that is how a 20-something year-old views one’s place in society, I’m truly scared for what her kids wilkl be come the day she ever has any. Our world has become a can of mixed nuts- one is either a completely whacked-out antisocial liberal nutjob with no constraints of any kind….or one is a conservative obedient slave who thinks that morality is meted-out by the state. It’s a world of polar opposites in which neither side possesses any sanity. We are the few who can still think…and we see how rare a breed we are.

      • Exactly Nunzio. Not only did I/we encourage getting in ‘trouble’. We had to almost make them cause they were soooo scared of the rhetoric from school. But once they learned that the ‘trouble’ was nothing more than a scare tactic, it got way better, and more fun for me to watch and be a part of. Of course I/we (mostly me), had some talking’s to the local cops and teachers, such as ‘no, you will not chase a kid on a dirtbike, no you will not send a kid to the principle for offering a different opinion than yours (some tried, at their peril), no, I will not intervene when they do get in trouble, they can stand on their own two feet., etc……..
        A big one I just remembered was the ‘bullying’ thing, with posters all over the school “you are not allowed to fight back!”, yeah right. That didn’t work out to well for them. I feel sorry for the kids today if it’s back like that, most likely.
        BTW, all of this was only 5-10 years ago.

        • Here’s a good one Nunzio I just remembered. I use to be the kid getting in trouble, mostly cause of dirtbikes. Didn’t care. I enjoyed dirtbikes more than the risk of getting caught. And getting caught I did. But then I learned a valuable lesson. Ride with the mayors son’s. Yup, it worked. But then the same cops who couldn’t touch me, found ways to get me away from the mayors son’s, like underage drinking, etc.. They nailed me to wall, with me in court basically giving them an invisible finger. This went on for years “IT’s going to be on your record!” whatever. So here’s the best part. There was one cop who had it out for me bad because I beat him in court (at 16). He beat me many times after that though.
          So I go back to where I was raised to a concert at small venue, and I see the local PBA doing a fundraiser. I went up to the guy, “hey is officer X still around” This is 35 years later. Yup, except it’s Chief X, or something like that. Hey do me a favor and let him know that ChrisIN didn’t turn out a vagrant like he thoght, etc….. He said I’ll do that right now on my phone. The guy said Chief X said, no way that kid ended up being OK”. Ahhh sir….., he’s standing right in front of me in a sport coat and just donated XX to our PBA. hahahaha…………..

        • **”No, you are not allowed to fight back”**

          Haha! The mantra of the liberal state, like NY and CA. which will throw YOUR ass in jail for 40 years for daring to even possess a gun….but if a “minority” murders you with “an illegal gun” it’ll be a miracle if he even does 7 years. Teach ’em the state mantra at the state school, early- You Are Not Allowed To Defend Yourself.

          Don’t suppose they had posters up saying “You’re not allowed to bully”…..

          And all of that “bullying” stuff too- My gosh! This has bred a generation of men-children who as grown adults go running to the boss any time they hear something that “offends them”, like some neutered half-queer 12 year-old.

  21. Owning a car “way back” meant you fixed yourself or walked. There was no way to afford professional repairs working fast food or retirement home kitchen duty (my high school gig). At least then it was straight forward mechanicals no computers.

    Sure learned quick, and someone always had a dad with that “awesome set of tools” when you came up short. One buddy was really talented, got his grannies 57 Chevy wagon, dropped the Powerglide auto and put in a 4 speed manual. I helped on that one. The rear quarter was smashed, he got a boneyard wagon and cut replaced brazed in the good quarter did a great job. Did the paint himself too.

    So, we’ve really lost out , what kid now tinkers on projects like this? When I was young there were basement workshops, and or a garage where dad and grand dad passed on valuable knowledge. When I ended up in aerospace in my early 20s I already had a mechanical knowledge of how stuff worked. When I left in 2012, the youngins’ were book smart but near zero practical mechanical knowledge. The best ones asked “why” and us grey beards were ready to explain. I fear for the future, I hope there will always be a critical mass of smarties that can keep it all running but ???

    • There’s something to be said about working with one’s hands and developing practical skills, even if you don’t work in “the trades”. When you’re young and all you can afford is an old beater, or, even if you’ve got money, you’ve also got some interest in “performance” and want to tinker with them yourself. Later, when you buy your first home, you’re eating Top Ramen and chicken franks just to be able to afford the payments, so when the “light fixer” needs some TLC, guess who’s going to do it?

      Not only with so many boys being raised by their mothers and not having regular contact with their fathers (in some cases, that’s a good thing, but mostly, it’s NOT) deny them the GUIDANCE that “Dad” brings, it also denies them the ability to develop practical problem-solving skills. They sure as hell ain’t gonna get it in the “Gubmint” schools! And does anyone remember when was the last time a high school had SHOP classes?

  22. And everyone upgraded the factory radio to pick up WDVE out of Pittsburgh.

    We went to concerts in Pittsburgh too, a 160 mile drive, sometimes on a week night with school the next day. Our parents let us go but with the string that we wouldn’t skip out the next day. And we stuck to that rule, showing up the next day full of caffine and adrenaline, so we could show off our new tour shirts. That taught us that The Man only wants some of our time, and not necessarily at peak productivity, and what we did after hours didn’t matter. We got to see things at a scale we never would have on a family or organized trip to the city, and found out life isn’t as black and white as the color TV told us. The concert became nothing more than the catalyst.

    The other thing is, we didn’t get pulled over (and no sobriety “check points,” didn’t really need them anyway), we didn’t get into fights (except for that one time), we managed to feed ourselves, we interacted with other fans without rioting, and we made it home after midnight to dad sleeping in the easy chair.

    Just like we planned. Not our parents, not the PTA, nor the cruise director. Not anyone but us.

  23. This might really be a story for those under the age of 57. By my recollection (I’m 48), by the early ‘80s, that ‘71 was already an extreme rarity on the roads as a daily driver. My earliest car memories were of the gas lines in the late ‘70s that stretched around the block in front of my house from the second Arab oil embargo. That’s the last time I recall seeing a lot of the early 70s big boat sedans and heavy Chevys. They seemed to disappear quickly and completely by the 80s and were long gone when I got my license in ‘91. At that time, the car enthusiast guys my age had ‘79 to early 80s corvettes and mustangs and 280z’s and such. They looked cool but weren’t very powerful. I don’t think they could’ve challenged the current versions of those cars at the time, which were already well out of reach on a fast food job budget.

  24. I had a 71 Plymouth Satellite I bought back in the mid 80’s (same body style as top picture). From it I learned to buy cars that ran and were not rusted out. Turns out if the only good parts on a car are the interior and some chrome and trim; you bought the wrong car. It went to the wreckers after me and my buddies proved we couldn’t do body work either.

    After that I bought a Chevy with a big block that looked great but needed body work. Had that body work done by professionals and still own it today.

  25. I remember Dulles back in ‘86. I went with a friend to pick up his buddy flying in from Colorado. A straight shot in and out with basically nothing but corn fields surrounding it at the time. Now you need a GPS and nerves of steel to get in and out of there. By the way, we went in his ‘57 Chevy p/u that day. Now you’d get run over if you drove it down there today.


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