Thursday, October 16, 2008

One of my first loves

One of my first loves was "born" in 1963 when I was an 8 year young boy in 3rd grade, when thousands of Americans were driving their 1963 Pontiac Grand Prix automobiles on the highways and roads. Eight years later in 1971, one would be my first car.

It all begin in the summer of 1970 with a part-time summer job I had working in the Duncan Hines Division of Proctor & Gamble, dumping flour, from 100 lb. sacks into bins, that was used to produce cake mix. I made $2.00 an hour working Monday through Friday from 7:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. I felt like a rich man because minimum wage was only $1.65 an hour in those days. My weekly gross earnings were $40.00 and after taxes my weekly paycheck was $36.41. Payday was every Friday.

My Mom drove me to and from work every day and on Friday we would stop at the bank on the way home and I would deposit $30.00 of my paycheck into a savings account. I kept the remaining $6.41 for weekly spending money. I did this every week during my summer job and eventually, with some other savings, had enough money to buy my first car - a red 1963 Pontiac Grand Prix with a white vinyl top. It cost a whopping $475 and just about drained my savings account.

Every middle-age man remembers his first car and I am no exception. It was a gas-guzzler averaging about 9 miles a gallon, so many of my memories are of me being at the gas station filling up the gas tank. Gasoline was only 30-35 cents a gallon so a full tank costed about $6.00 and lasted an entire week.

My other memories include driving to and from school every day, going to the drive-in movies with my girlfriend, cruising around the neighborhood with friends, and even washing and waxing my car each week. I can kick myself in my behind for not taking any photos of my first car so, until recently, my pleasant memories of yesteryear had been limited to those in my mind's eye.

Recently, however, I discovered a video posted on YouTube by someone who owns a red 1963 Pontiac Grand Prix with a white vinyl top just like my first car, so now I have some visual memories to go along with my mind's eye memories.



As a middle-age man, every time I look in the mirror I see a 16-year old kid, and when I think of being a 16-year old kid, I think of my 1963 Pontiac Grand Prix, one of my first loves.

Pax Domini sit semper vobiscum

4 comments:

Charles Long said...

My first was a 64 Chevelle. Good car.

Anonymous said...

There's a song by Queen called "I'm In Love With My Car". Sooo true.

pierini said...

Charles, I had an older cousin who had a 1966 Chevelle SS with a 396 cubic inch engine, 4 on the floor, and red.

It was in his car going 120 mph one night that I discovered that I wasn't meant to be crazy because I didn't like being in a car going that fast as much as my other crazy cousins did.

Thanks for stopping by.

pierini said...

Thanks for stopping by anonymous. I'll listen to that song. It probably can be found on YouTube.