Sunday, May 21, 2006

Conspicuous Consumptiion

When I was 21, I got a real rush out of wild driving. We tore along the roads of Europe freezing our toes off in an open jeep and assuming there were no rules of the road and that jeeps never rolled over. Actually, we knew the rules and saw jeeps roll over, but I couldn't happen to us! In the Philippines we climbed up mountains and accelerated down the hills with the driver blind folded and just taking verbal instruction.

At the age of thirty, we got a Pontiac Gran Prix and proved they could exceed 100 miles per hour on the New Jersey Turnpike.

When our son was 17, we bought an old International S cout with rusted out floor boards and springs and shocks that increased it's height by more than three feet.(as a second car to go with the second home). Before the state inspectors forced us to restore its normal stance, we proved that raising the center of gravity too high is a bad idea. It turned out to be a rotten beach-buggy, it kept getting stuck in the sand.

By age 60, I had discovered the joys of "My Father's Oldsmobile". I marvelled at gas prices, but didn't really care.

At 70 I was driving a comfy Buick Park Avenue. We purred along at the speed limit (right!) without a care.

The knees were really acting up by 76, and a Buick Rendezvous made it easier on the knees than the lower sedans. Now at 80, I get that rush when I pass a cop at 3 miles over the limit.