! 1996aug15 gd>
A dedicated thrifter, I decided a few years ago to buy every copy of Whipped Cream & Other Delights I saw, as long as it wasn't more than fifty cents. (I have since run across another person doing the same thing--and with the same fifty cent rule. As Victor Spinetti would say, "Together, we could--dare I say it?--RULE THE WORLD!")
I had no idea what I would do with these albums. I just thought they might come in handy one day. They ended up hanging in a large display rack on my living room wall.
About a hundred of them.
Anyway, for five years I had been meaning to make an art car and attend Art Car Weekend. About a year ago, I looked at my wall and got an inspiration....
I had a car picked out: a 1965 Ford station wagon owned by a friend. It was perfect. Not mechanically; it didn't run as well as I'd have liked. But it was thematically perfect. It was green--like the album. It was made in 1965--like the album. And it would complement the 1965 Ford I already own, a Mustang named Sylvie, and would therefore make the perfect Bruno, to complete the Carrollian tandem.
But it was not to be. The prospective Bruno did not pass mechanic Stan's inspection.
(Nor my 6-year old niece's. As everyone else came out to look at the car, she stayed on her front porch. I went back & asked what she thought of the car. "Interesting," was all she said.)
Stan's critique was more direct:
Me: "Are you saying I shouldn't drive this car to Houston?"
Stan: "I'm saying you shouldn't drive this car back to Tempe."
(Stan is the former owner of a New Jersey garage, now transplanted to the middle of the desert. By transplanted I mean Stan and the garage: Jersey bought out the land from under Stan's Garage, so Stan got some teamster friends to bring over an empty railroad car, into which he proceeded to load the entire garage--building, contents, everything, right down to the I-beams--and shipped the whole thing out to the middle of the desert, and reassembled it at the foot of the Superstition Mountains, site of the legendary Lost Dutchman's Mine. It's a strange thing to see a New Jersey garage in the Arizona desert.)
With the Art Car Parade looming (we're talking weeks here!), I talked my brother-in-law into selling me his 1962 Chevy Biscayne, which had been sitting idle in his yard for two years, home to a family of pack rats.