Our Grand Canyon Vacation – Camper Trip of a Lifetime in Home Movies

            Off to Wally World!

The year was 1995, August.  Our new baby was now a little over a year old and was not ready for a National Lampoon, cross country Grand Canyon pop-up trailer trip – but Mom and Dad sure were!

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It Never Stops – My Odds of Dying in Car Crash

Oops, where's my bumper?

Oops, where’s my bumper?

It seems that it never ends, threats of life ending that is.  Very early in this story telling escapade, I shared how I somehow escaped death as a 7 year old when I was struck by a school bus (link).  I have a few of these stories to share and I was hoping that there would not be any new ones, but here I am, getting ready to share one that happened just the other night.
According to the NSC, the odds of any of us dying with the cause of death being a car crash, is 1 in 112.  Apparently that statistic does not include me because I’ve had a couple of accidents that could have ended this way.  I guess I’m destined to be one of the 1 in 7 who will die of heart disease or cancer; oh joy.

Camaro and Firebirds – Dedicated to the Cars that Got us Here Alive

Vroom, vroom

Vroom, vroom


Our cars drive us back and forth from where we are and where we’re going.

Almost everyone I’ve ever met in my life has said that they remember the details of every single place they lived in and every single car they ever owned.  Well, ok – all the men remember all the cars.  My wife can recall the details of every single golf course we’ve played on, but has blocked out most of the memories of our vehicles.  We spend most of our time on this earth in our homes.  The mere act of sleeping can account for a 1/3rd of our lives, (or 50% for our teenage kids).

Most of us fondly recall our cars as well; there are stories and memories associated with every single one we ever owned or leased.  Several of my blog stories have been, or will be, written around one of our cars.  I wanted, however, to write a single documentary story that would list every vehicle Kim and I have owned in our adult lives.  That doesn’t sound too exciting, does it?  I’ll try to spice it up where I can but if for nothing else, this story is at minimum, for me (as are all of my stories).  For if I didn’t enjoy reading what I’ve written, then writing these would be a horrible waste of time.  Time is what we have to make love and memories.  Love and memories take us further than our cars. Continue reading

It’s True, you really do Catch More Flies with Honey – Getting my Louisiana Drivers License

Honey Flies

Honey Flies

As I am writing this story, I am down in Phoenix, only 3 days after my retirement from P&G (read me).  Kim and I are trying to ensure at least one of us is visiting monthly to maintain the house before we one day move here on a more permanent basis.  I have a car here, my 2001 Ford Escape so one of my chores on this trip is to get it registered and titled in AZ.  That was supposed to be yesterday’s chore but the blower motor on the home HVAC system chose this day to go out.  That was 6:30 pm.  I spent the night sleeping on the couch, with a fan blowing directly on me all evening.  The house got up to a balmy 90 degrees.  Ah, retirement….ain’t she sweet!

This morning was spent at the AZ DMV.  There were two offices equidistant from my house.  I drove to one and saw a huge long line outside before the office opened so I drove home, waited an hour and then headed over to DMV, choice B. Continue reading

Stump Beats Oil Pan Every Time!

Stump Wins!

Stump Wins!

Weekend nights (read me) as high schooler’s while Growing up on Prytania were likely a lot like they are today.  We’d typically have a hang out spot that we’d hit to share a few laughs and make some memories.  Maybe it would be Frisch’s or the roller rink or perhaps we’d just cruise around.  This story entry is all about the ride home on one of those nights.  It doesn’t qualify as one of those things that could have killed us, (as in this story), but it’s a fun memory of days gone by with my best friend during high school – Joe Copas.  Continue reading

My First Car was really a Tank


Up until the invention of social media, we kids just absolutely could not wait until we got our driver’s license and a car to drive.  Today kids can stay connected via Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, you name it.  A car today does not hold the same significance as it did in all the past decades.  If you didn’t have a car, you didn’t get around town.  If you didn’t get around town, you never met other girls and boys and you were never connected to the stories that came in to school on Mondays.  For a teenage boy, a car meant the possibility of sex!  Now, don’t get me wrong – just because you had a car did not mean you were automatically going to get to have sex.  But we didn’t know that – we thought all the boys that had a car were in the club!  Why was this so important?  Because teenage boys think about sex more than they think about eating!  As we approached the age of 16 in Ohio, figuring out a way to get a car and to afford the gasoline was the paramount mission. Continue reading

Stupid Things We Did as Kids and Lived to Tell About


I must have been 15 years old at the time of this event I’m sharing.  A guy named Randy was 16 and Randy was popular for many reasons, one being that he was the oldest kid in our particular age group…and had access to one something we all desired as blossoming teenagers.  No, I’m not talking about Playboy magazines – I’m talking about a car!  This was no average vehicle.  No, it was the one and only Ralph Nader Death Machine, the Chevrolet Corvair, affectionately referred to us as “The Pic Mobile”.  It belonged to Randy’s dad, but was the primary transportation for Randy, (known to us all in the neighborhood as Pic – short for Pickle).  Continue reading