Wednesday, June 4, 2008

like a book in a language you can't read

I was driving on Sunday on Route 12, which runs from Norwich to Groton (actually it runs for a lot more than that, but that's the only part of it I use. It could, beyond the bend at the Laurel Hill Bridge in Norwich, just drop cars off the edge of the earth and it would be a number of years until I learned of this.) Sunday, once it made up its mind was a very nice day with just about the warmest temperatures I think we've had all spring and some blue skies with high clouds.

I ended up for a number of miles driving behind someone in an old VW Cabriolet, the body style they had in the Eighties, I think, and here it was called the Rabbit (in Germany where it originated it was called the Golf and was, believe it or not, intended as VW's answer to the BMW 2002 series. And then, as luck and fate would have it, BMW changed the question) and was monstrously successful at least for awhile.

This one was green with a light brown top that was down and the windows were all up and the driver was wearing a ball cap. To me, sort of like taking a shower while wearing a raincoat. Those tops weren't automatic as I recall so you got a decent work-out taking them down and putting them up (and there was no such thing as an emergency top up in the event of a sudden rain squall--you had to wrestle with these bad boys) so I'm trying to understand what the point was of going topless if the windows were all up and you wear a hat.

To the driver's credit, unlike a lot of other cars we've seen with them and have reacted with 'Huh?' he didn't have those Connecticut "Early American" (=classic car) license plates. I hate when folks stick those on a loser car, one that's not been restored or preserved-they've just figured out they're allowed to have those tags and they do. Besides, and I react the same way when I see the plates on a BMW or a Mercedes, I shake my head at the concept of an Early American car built in the Rhein-Ruhr Gebiet.

At my age, I could qualify to be considered an Early American--though the cops searched the apartment for years, they never found the raincoat. Willie Dixon said it was a like Zen Stand-Up comedy, but he assured me the little girls understand.
-bill kenny

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