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Monday, September 5, 2011

Beauty has a viscous quality

I spent Sunday at Lime Rock Park Racetrack, walking among priceless automobiles. Hundreds of them. Competition vehicles, hand made vehicles, one-of-a-kind pieces of history. I took photographs of only one. Yes. One. A car that gave me shortness of breath, and a desire to slowly draw my tongue along its lines.

This vehicle (and I use the term quite intentionally) is not merely an automobile. In fact, it doesn't even NEED to be an automobile. It is, in its purest form - nothing more than a creation inspired by divinity. The ceiling of the Sistine chapel. Beethoven's 9th. Bernini's "Ecstasy of St Theresa". All these exhibit a drive that transcends and occasionally overwhelms the humans creating them. And like St Theresa, let's not for one minute forget that there's often very real and outright fornication occurring in such things. Not sex in the typical physical manner, but in the primal, deep rooted brain sense.

     The car is a 1951 Abarth 205 Vignale Berlinetta. Say it with me and mouth the words softly to yourself: "Vin-gnala Baer-linetta". Speaking the words out loud is the aural equivalent to having melon juice drip off your lips on to your chin. It is flat out luscious. All Italian named vehicles from this era seem to have this quality. This particular machine is one of only three ever produced.

     This brings me to my next point: The Italians are seemingly incapable of producing anything ugly or without passion (even when they TRY). I have a theory that all Italian children are issued an aesthetic creativity test at age 4. If they fail, they are casually left on a hillside to die. Call it Eugenics, purifying the breed, whatever you want. It leaves their culture with an astounding ability to create exclusively beautiful, moving, works of art.

     I've often said that Italian culture is one that thrives on chaos. Perhaps when you give up effective, practical infrastructures you are given the freedom to communicate with the divine within us all.....and create things like THIS.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Dirty Rock N Roll

     This is going to to be tricky. I have to convey my absolute adoration for these things, without sounding like some non-attorney spokesperson. What I appreciate about them is their purity. Their purpose-built ethos. Their rough-n-tumble, beat the snot outta’ you while you pilot ‘em, straight-up grit.

     These, my friends are what I consider real-ass machines. Built by a group of craftsmen under the roof of Sports Car Restoration in Hartford CT. These things are a mixed drink with all my favorite ingredients: Bad Ass attitude, a tongue-in-cheek ode to historic vintage competition, nuthin’ to lose style, and creativity.

     It’s equal parts Johnny Thunders and Ray Davies. Heroin and rolling field nostalgia. Girls and Milkshakes, skinny ties, Motown, Jazz, Northern Soul, Ace of Spades Lemmy, and a Message to You Rudy….it’s got it all…and yet these images and sounds enter my psyche without a single written word from a marketing department. That makes them (like all my favorite modes of transport) exquisitely executed. They perform an essential task: They evoke.

     I’ll quote builder Marc Rosenberg in describing his own rig:

     “The seat cushion is part of a Martha Stewart kitchen anti fatigue mat. The weird industrial looking end of the frame immediately behind the seat is part of the center stand from the bike. The baffles are made of pluming fixtures welded together and with holes drilled through them which were then welded inside a piece of black pipe and turned down.”

     These bikes are straight up “bombs away” hit n’ run winners in my book. Not because they’re fast or flashy. Not because they’re super model fashion statements, but because they are built with love and passion. Intrinsic qualities that don’t need an advertising firm to explain them.

     I’ll quote Marc again here:

     “I don't need fenders, I don't need an electric starter, I don't need blinkers, I don't need real mufflers, I don't need a speedometer, I don't need traditional handle bars, I don't need mirrors, I don't need a big cushy seat, or a fairing, or storage”

     That about sums it up. Purity of design. No clutter. No jewelry. No make up. In life, we often need to iron our shirts and shave….but sometimes, you just want the messed up hair of fresh sex.

     Want one? Contact Brian at:

Monday, July 18, 2011

Why I will never be wealthy...

Apparently, in order to be successful and wealthy in this country, you need to:

A) believe others are dumber than you are, and hire marketing advisors to prove it. (and you *might* just be correct!)

B) un-learn your grammar and punctuation

C) for god's sake - misuse your apostrophes as often as fucking possible.

For me, such scribed atrocities are akin to farting on a first date and STILL getting laid. It gets me angry...and a little jealous.

For an example of item "A" I present you with the following brain torture:

This is a Can Am car

This is a Spider

This is a Roadster

...and THIS.....THIS abortion is what they market as the:
"Can Am Spyder (sic) Roadster"

Remember the term I used; "Flowmaxers"? They'll be lining up to buy these disabled little gremlins faster than you can say "I got Laid at a Jimmy Buffet Concert!". Apparently in the fine print of that prescription it reads: "May cause you to trade your fanny pack for ridiculous 3 wheeled ninny apparatus".

Sunday, July 17, 2011 polo shirt failed the sniff test.

     Well, this is it. My second official blog entry. Like any good centerfold model, I’ll begin by enticing you with my “Turn Ons” and “Turn Offs”. You folks **are** here for the writing, right? Not just the pretty pictures of me in my skivvies I hope.  I'll do my best to keep you duly enthralled.

Turn Ons: 

Honest cars
Weird cars
Fun cars
The mindful waste of fossil fuels
...and above all: The visceral

Turn Offs: 

Cadillac Escalades (you're not **really** going to make me explain this, are you?)
Hummers (and just to clarify: the ones that are “purchased” are bad while the ones that are “given” are good)
Fake wood - unless it’s ironic and plastered on the outside of something from the 70s with the word “Squire” on it
Loafers with tassels

     Let's set the record straight. I am decidedly NOT a car snob. I love people that drive the living hell out of their $400 econoboxes far more than the folks that wheeze along at 54 mph in their high dollar performance cars. I call the later group "The Flomaxers". Yeah I got a prostate too...but until it starts acting up, give me something snotty to drive and let me revel in its idiosyncrasies . My favorite cars aren't just quirky....they tell great jokes, too! Dirty ones. You just have to listen for them.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

I gone n dunnit' now....

Well, after years of careful consideration (read: "sheer laziness and insecurity") I've decided to start my own blog. For all those who have suggested this format for exhibiting my deviant automotive nature, I'd like to take a moment and thank you. If this all goes horribly wrong (you know, in some sort of Charlie Sheen kind of way), I'll remember where each of you lives and I'll have no remorse in toilet papering your family's pets. "Heeeerrreeee Fido Fido Fido....C'mere boy!"