Archive | May 2013

Old Stuff… and a Wiser Me.

Pyramid amp? Check.
Gold-anodized valve covers? Check and check.
Acid-washed jeans? Double that check.
Mullet neatly combed? Check.
King Kobra blasting through those Jensen 6×9’s? Need you ask?
Let’s head back to 1990.

There we were, digging through boxes of memorabilia and assorted keepsakes and whatnot (read as “cleaning up the back room in the Studio again”), and the kid stumbles across a number of goodies that sparked some serious synapse activity. There’s some serious goodies in the boxes (amongst the crap I’ve tossed out, and useful stuff he’s donated), and many will hit the auction block soon… And a few will be made available to collectors, or those seeking to start a museum, finish a collection of their own, or even annoy your own wife by bringing home more stuff… whatever.

street machine nationals

That said, check out this nifty bunch o’ stuff from the old Street Machine Nationals East days:

street machine nationals memorabilia

What’s really cool here is the all-over print Beretta tee. It’s damned-near mint (the logo on the chest is showing some age, but still, it’s unreal), and is just a killer tee in its own right. There are wrist bands, a vehicle pass from the ’89 edition, a gate ticket, and a complimentary pass, too. I kept a lot of stuff.

wrist bands

complimentary pass

gate ticket

The tie-dye looking shirts have more wear (in sales lingo, that would be “genuine vintage” look, not some crappy filter), and are Large in size. I had, honestly, thought these were long gone.

street machine national t-shirts

There’s also a dash plaque from ’93 (with a matching lapel pin)…

dash plaque

This stuff had somehow escaped my eye for a long time, and by fate or whatever other mystical intervention, the box with these items has made it through numerous cleanings and the subsequent purging rituals of “Hell, I never even open that box… throw it out!” days. Is is destined to remain in my Studio, passed down from generation to generation, where, eventually, on an interstellar trek to a distant galaxy in some 400 years, my great, great, great, great, great, great, great (oh, you get the idea) grandchild will spill grape jelly on it, and ruin almost half of a millenia of preservation… with preserves, ironically.

Suffice to say, it sparked some heavy cruising down memory lane… These were the days when cars were built for fun, and the whole mood around the fairgrounds was one big party. Very few egos, not much in the way of “power parking”, or showing off how big of a check you could write, or whole you could dig with credit and multiple mortgages. Pro-Street was well into the wave of excess, and, oddly enough, the cleanest, simplest cars were getting more and more looks, thanks to guys like Scott Sullivan.

Kinda makes you almost eager to accept big hair, acid-washed jeans and loose cassette spools again, just for the atmosphere. Bare-bones street machining. Crank windows, avoiding potholes because drag shocks lacked certain, um, handling characteristics, the scent of racing fuel the clatter of solid lifters (just over that tick from your leaky header gaskets)… scrounging wrecking yards for an HEI distributor or that alternator bracket… The REAL good times indeed. The times that inspire slack-jawed response from today’s fairgrounds folks.

Let’s ignite that mood, shall we?

It’s some interesting history indeed, and heck, we may even package it with some era-specific listening materials (read as “cassettes”), and frame ’em for wall decor! Instant conversation pieces!

Here’s some video to get you in the mood:

…if we find some era-specific shorty-shorts and neon-colored ball caps, would it sweeten the offer?

Speaking of shorty-shorts and mullets… here’s some video my friend Kurt shot while we cruisied the mighty Chevelle (see below — I mean for the car… not so much Kurt. If that were the case, we’d have a whole other series of blog posts, and this would get really confusing) around the grounds:

I’ll spare your eyes (and my self esteem) by not showing you what I looked like in those days gone by… But here’s a peek at what I was driving back then:

chevelle street machine

…and thinking I was all cool, posing the car with a trophy queen. Between this brilliant idea, my mullet, the acid washed jeans and high-top sneakers, and my neon-framed Wayfarers, well, I was a dork. I’m older now… and probably slightly wiser, as well, but the old days still bring a bit of a warm feeling (unlike what you’d get wearing shorty-shorts). Things were good then. The cars were fast, the music was loud, and all was right somehow.

Even if I was a dork.

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