Sunday, June 20, 2021


Saturday, June 19, 2021

Automotif CCXXII...

1977 Chevy Nova Concours coupe. The traction bars and the orange-painted front drum brakes peeking out through the slots in the mag wheels really tie the piece together.

If I'm betting on my (admittedly very dated) experience, this thing's got a 305 smog motor that's never had the heads off, a dual exhaust done at the local muffler shop, and way too much carb, possibly on the factory manifold. All bark and no bite.

This is the four-wheeled equivalent of a KZ650 with an unpainted fiberglass bikini fairing, factory suspension, a no-name 4-into-1, and intact chicken strips.


Friday, June 18, 2021

U-Turn Charlie, they call him...

Batman, your car is ready.

LED lighting has definitely allowed for some wild headlight and taillight schemes. Also, what's up with 1,850 horsepower? They couldn't find another 150 someplace for a nice round 2k? Somebody was falling down on the job if you ask me.


Wednesday, June 16, 2021


This moment of tranquilo brought to you by Canon and Oh God I Needed This.

Tuesday, June 15, 2021

Wait, what?

"They're just doing that to trigger people into complaining," he complained, triggeredly.


They made their bed, now they're lying in it.

From a WaPo story on the urban camping epidemic in Portland:
On this Monday, the city sent its contractors a list of 14 sites:

A middle school with two tents and three broken-down RVs blocking access to the student drop-off zone.

A vacant lot near Costco, where some homeless residents had been living for long enough to lay concrete foundations and start building rustic homes.

A highway underpass with at least 20 residents, where the nearby building was charred by fire damage.

A cul-de-sac littered with stolen and disassembled vehicles located next to the DMV.

During the past several years, Portland had systemically eliminated some of its tools for policing life in homeless encampments. Oregon had decriminalized the possession of small amounts of heroin and methamphetamine, which were common in camps. Portland had cut its police budget by $15 million and gutted its neighborhood response team. Increasingly, the city’s homelessness enforcement was left up to teams of contractors armed with nothing but de-escalation training, heavy-duty gloves, Naloxone to treat opioid overdoses, garbage bags and orange buckets to carry away human waste.

How long can stuff like this go on before you scare off the taxpayers who can actually afford the cost of living there?


Automotif CCXXI...

Spotted this Ford Model A Deluxe Tudor while out and about. The Model T may have been the car that put America on wheels, but it was still very much the beta test version of the automobile, with controls that would seem confusing to a modern driver. On the other hand, if you can drive a manual transmission, there's nothing really unusual about a Model A, although the unsynchronized crash gearbox might take some getting used to.


Monday, June 14, 2021

Pulling a 'Crazy Ivan'.

Pep Talk

Marko on writing full-time:
"I sold Terms of Enlistment and its sequel to 47North in the spring of 2013, and I’ve been able to write full-time ever since. It took me until my forties to figure out that I wasn’t really cut out for any other kind of work, so to those of you who are submitting stories and trying to get a foot in the door, I’d say not to worry about being too late to the party. Nothing moves fast in the publishing field anyway."

Won't Get Fooled Again...

Although it happened over a year ago, I remember it like it was yesterday...

I was headed home from Indy Arms Company and pulled up at the traffic light at the intersection of 54th and Keystone. I was westbound, and 54th Street makes a little dogleg across Keystone Avenue, so the two sides of 54th don't get a green light at the same time; westbound gets the green light first, and after it turns red, then eastbound traffic gets to go.

The light was yellow already as I rolled up, so I stopped. Looking at the line of cars on 54th across the intersection, the fourth car back or so caught my eye. It was pretty much obscured by the cars in front of it, but the lines of the C-pillar and rear fender that were visible were the bright green shape of a Dodge Challenger. I thought about reaching for the Sony in my pocket so as to be ready when he rolled through the intersection, but really the novelty's worn off on the Mopar pony car revival for me. Unless it's something wild like a Hellcat or whatever, I rarely pull out the camera...

Man, of all the retro homage pony cars, the Challenger is the most faithful to the original, because what rolled through the intersection, turning north on Keystone to taunt the camera still in my pocket with a lingering broadside shot was an original gangsta 1970 Dodge Challenger T/A in color code FJ5, Sublime.

This was on my mind the other day when I was riding along with Marko and noticed that distinctive roofline... purple this time ...waiting to pull out on a side road. I had my 5DS in my lap with the 24-105mm f/4L, and I hefted it expectantly, but fully prepared to be disappointed by another provocatively-painted current Fiat-Chrysler product.

Only nope.

As we rolled past the side street I was staring straight down the snout of a Plymouth Barracuda.

Marko pulled over and let the guy drive past and we continued along behind him. 

When we took the on-ramp to the interstate and the 'Cuda continued straight, I managed some good shots. I was kinda wishing for a longer lens, but the 50MP sensor in the 5DS gives you plenty of room to crop.

It appears to be a 1970 'Cuda with a 383 in color code FC7, In Violet (the Plymouth name for what Dodge called Plum Crazy).

Nice clean lines, no wings or tape stripes... about as low key as a car with a color named "In Violet" can be. With the standard engine, the 335bhp 383 Super Commando, and a four speed, this must be a pleasant ride in the mountains on a summer day.