Random Thoughts

Where there’s a will, there’s an angry man in a pig hat.

Not so proud of the fact that I know where to obtain “wet specimens.”

My new bike’s name is Irving, from an ancient Scottish name meaning green water.

The popcorn may be gone but the movie goes on.

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Beerfests are complicated

A recent visit to the Tour de Fat bike/beer festival was quite an eye opener. I’m a grown man. I thought I had this buying beer thing pretty much in hand, but I was wrong. Below you will find the step-by-step instructions for buying beer at Tour de Fat.

beer_wristbandStep 1:

Find the tent where they are handing out wrist bands. They are free but you will have to show ID to get one.

beer_tokenStep 2:

Find another tent where they sell beer tokens. These cost $5. You need to show your wrist band.  Now I understand Ron White’s routine about beer coupons.


Step 3:

Find yet another tent. Though this one is easier to find because it actually has BEER. Give the nice lady a token and she gives you an  actual real drinkable beer.

Step 4:

Drink your beer. You’ve earned it. Then go back to step 2 as needed.

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Animals From My Travels

This gallery contains 7 photos.

One of my favorite things about bike trails are the animals I see along the way. Here are some from my last few trips. You like?I like (3) don’t like (0)

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Random Thoughts – The ides of Sept.

Invisible voices tell me that everything will be OK, but I don’t trust them. They smell like popcorn.

Disenfranchised is the new ennui.

As the man once said, “I want to see Anne Frank. I want to be Anne Frank.”

Every time I pass the bank that Patty Hearst robbed I want to stop and take a picture. Yet I never do.

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Random Thoughts – 8/14/14

Nostalgia dreams of warm snow.

Nothing is scarier than a rental RV with fresh dents parking next to you in the dark.

Today I saw a coyote, a peacock and a yak. Only one was fenced in.

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Random Thoughts – 7/24/14

I wonder if any aging rock bands ever toured in disguise as a tribute band to themselves.

Sometimes the muse is a broken axle.

Last week I picked up a Starfleet application at a Russian sub shop in the Richmond.

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What I’m Watching: Auctions America Burbank Jul 31 – Aug 2 (updated results)

Burbank is one of my favorite auctions to watch. It has a wide variety of cars, many of them going up without reserve. Some real bargains can be had. With many auctions I find it hard to find enough cars to write about. With the Burbank auction the problem is pairing down my interest list so as not to overwhelm the reader. Below are my favorite five.

Thursday Jul 31

Lot No. 1015
1969 Winnebago Motorhome
No reserve
As the owner of a Winnebago, and a long-time resident of Iowa, the Mini Brave holds a special place in my heart, and this is a nice one. A definite part barge.

The estimate is 10 to 12 thousand. At a big RV show you could easily get much more than that, but at collector car auctions RV’s have not been doing well. While it has a nice vintage aura I’m not sure people will pay that much for a gimicky vehicle. I’m thinking it will go closer to 8 thousand.

Result: $3410 (I knew I should have put in a bid!)

Lot No. 1018
1967 Citroën 2-CV Truckette
No reserve
I have wanted one of these these since I saw Peter Sellers drive one in one of the Pink Panther movies. The 2-CV is cool enough but add that covered truck bed and the thing reeks of unlimited potential. The French blue puts it over the top.

The estimate is 10 to 15 thousand. It may be my affection, but I’m guessing it will go closer to 15 than 10.

Result: $7975 (I am having a bad week, and I wish I had bid.)

Lot No. 1062
1967 Solyto Break Camping
No reserve
Like the Truckette this is a vehicle of unlimited potential. Though I’m not sure it would prove a rugged as the Truckette, being based on a scooter rather than designed from scratch as a car.

The estimate is 10 to 15 thousand which is interesting as this very car sold for $20,700 last year at the Minicar Museum auction. I think the estimate is closer to its real value.

Result: $7,425 (Seriously, I’m going to Burbank next year to start my own classic car dealership.)

Friday Aug 1

Lot No. 2010
1972 Honda Z600
No reserve
How far has the lowly Honda risen. When hitting the streets in 72 I laughed at this silly little car. Now here it sits in a collector car auction and my much more mature self would love to own it. Such a tiny car with a Honda motorcycle engine and a four speed is a blast to drive anywhere except maybe the interstate.

The estimate is 8 to 10 thousand. Given it’s historical significance I might have thought higher, but after some research I think the estimate is correct. While Japanese cars are growing in esteem collector-wise they still don’t match their European counterparts.

Result: $8,250 (The estimate was correct.)

Saturday Aug 2

Lot No. 3088
1956 Chrysler Plainsman Concept Car by Ghia
This car runs completely counter to what I’m usually interested in, but some cars are uber-cool now matter how expensive and ridiculous they are. If it’s true that one of the signs of genius is the ability to take risks that result in some monumental mistakes then the folks at Ghia proved their genius with this one.

A cross between a plain old American station wagon and Buck Rogers’ rocket. The airplane-style sliders on the dashboard give me a driving woodie. It is so wrong, yet so right, in a wrong sort of way.

The estimate is 150 to 200 thousand. That seems like a lot for a car that needs piles of work, but my knowledge of the value of factory prototypes is rather limited, so I can muster no reasonable argument against it.

Result: $176,000 (So much I am yet to learn.)


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Random Thoughts

Sometimes the muse is an old man with a shotgun counting to three.

It’s taken me more than half a century but I can finally own up to the fact that someday I WILL OWN A STUDEBAKER!

You solved the invention. Here is a gold star.

Sell me your blank pages and I’ll tell you where she’s hiding.

I try to write in black and white.

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The essence of competition

24 Hours of LeMons Renault vs. Humber hand-crank …: http://youtu.be/-VYieR_3AJ8

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Mecum Auction, Harrisburgh, Jul 24 – What I’m Watching (Updated with Results)

The odd thing is all the cars that catch my eye go up on Thursday. Wonder why?

t57 – 1963 Ford Econoline Pickup
170 CI, 3-Speed
Custom beer keg fuel tank
Twice I almost bought one of these. Both times I backed out because I judged it to be a mostly usesless vehicle. Less rugged than a real pickup truck and less practical than a van. Judging from how few of them were built and sold I’m guessing that I hold a popular opinion. The good thing about useless vehicles is that as time passes they often become rare and cool.
My estimate is about $15,000
Result: $6,500 (My worst estimate EVER!)

t92 – 1976 AMC Pacer 
258 CI, Factory Air
The AMC Pacer was designed and built to be one thing, then was marketed as something that it wasn’t. The end result is one of the most maligned cars ever built. The 258 is one of my favorite engines, powering three of my previous vehicles, but strap on the mid 70’s emissions crap and and air conditioner and your left with no power and worse gas mileage.
On the other hand, it has cool wheels.
Pacers have been doing well at auctions lately and this seems like a nice one.
Estimate: $12,000
Result: $14,250 (I guess the wheels were even cooler than assumed.)

t180 – 1980 Triumph TR8 Convertible 
Another car suffering from unrealistic expectations. Yes, it’s a British roadster with what was originally an American V-8, but no, this ain’t no Cobra. The wedgie style of the TR-7 was too different from it’s ancestors. It just didn’t have the aura of the traditional sports car. This would have been forgiven if the car was exceptional, but it wasn’t. In an attempt
to boost sales British Leyland stuffed in some of the 3.5 lite V-8’s that had laying around. This engine started life as an early 60’s Buick but was too small for the muscle car era so it got farmed out to England. The end result was a pretty decent car, but again, not amazing enough to spark much interest.
With the low mileage this may go for as much as $15,000
Result: $13,000 (Probably would have gone higher if it had cooler wheels.)

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