Readers Rides

Maintenance On Your Classic Car

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By the time the week end finally arrives you are grateful that somehow you made it. You sit on your favorite chair and take stock of your life. Great wife, three children, a four bedroom house, and of course your pride and joy. Yes, your classic car. For safety Sake lets go with a 69 Pontiac GTO. It’s dark green with the matching interior. You put it on one side of the garage and cover it so the kids don’t scratch it. You wash it and stare at it believing you will have it forever. But, you have great responsibilities at home and at times you just wish it was you and your car.

For example, your wife comes into your kingdom and states little Johnny needs an orthodontics appointment that will cost five thousand dollars. You see his buck teeth are so big it takes a half of tube of toothpaste and three toothbrushes everyday just to keep those choppers clean. Kids tease him and call him Beaver. And the Specialist said they may need to use a industrial belt sander to get these huge teeth back to normal. Ok. My brain gets this but it can wait. Then, your bride that used to be a size 2 comes in and says your daughter is going to need plastic surgery very soon. You see she was born with big ears and now as a pre teen the kids at school claim they can hear the ocean when she walks by. Ok, your brain calculates that at seventy five hundred dollars. Now in the back of your head you know the sink still leaks, the roof is now 18 years old, you have been wearing the same dress shoes for eight years and that lousy mini van in the garage needs tires and brakes.

Then, the youngest, sweetest child of the family comes skipping into your parlor and says she saw a puddle underneath your GTO. Well, Defcon five alert, battle stations, all hands on deck, goodness gracious and Gadzooks! Did you say a puddle underneath my car? Yes Daddy she says again. You jump out of chair run to the garage in shear panic , open the hood and check everything. Every bolt, faster, clip and so on. Then a water pump check, radiator check, brake lines look good, rear main seal ok, your brain is racing, pinion seal, trans axle seal, fuel lines, gas tank, filler neck, gas cap and so on. No leak found but you are in severe panic mode now.

Sweating profusely and dry mouth turns in white knuckle panic. How could my car do this to me? I love her, I wash her, I drive her easy, I keep her from rain and snow, I , I, I, I, …. Tears welling. Then, your youngest daughter comes into the garage area that has become an operating room and says, ” Daddy, did you see my hamster”? Now, you decide to put your fingers in the little puddle and see what it smells like. Sure enough it smells like liquid hamster. Your first thought is too dispose of this creature as soon as you find it but after you stop breathing heavy and the saliva returns to your mouth you know the danger is over.

Now, the moral of the story is to keep your maintenance up. These old cars need and require attention. Just because you only drive it one weekday and on weekends when the weather is good do not forget to take care of your baby. Just like those other babies in the house.

By Mark Weisseg

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