Saturday, January 14, 2012

An open letter to Longrooffan

Dear Longrooffan,

Regarding your recent comment on The Hemmings' blog post "A Walk In the Woods":

longrooffan says:
January 10, 2012 at 7:11 pm
It was a balmy spring evening in upstate New York back in ’52 or ’53. All of my cousins and I were enjoying a rare visit with our spinster Aunt Pearl. When we were kids, Aunt Pearl would have all of us cousins over to stay overnight just once a year and what a treat it was.

Well that year, we all brought along our bicycles and they were safely ensconced in the one car garage with a dirt floor she had out back. As a result, her prized possession, her immaculate 1950 Dodge Wayfarer was to spend the night camped out in her driveway.

As we young whippersnappers were exhausted from all the excitement of staying at Aunt Pearl’s, we all slept soundly only to be awakened in the middle of the night to the sound of Aunt Pearl screaming at the top of her lungs from her upstairs bedroom window. “You hoodlums get away from my car right this minute,” we heard our always sweet Aunt Pearl yell. We rose from the floor and scampered over to the living room window only to see four teenage boys climbing into Aunt Pearl’s Wayfarer and tear out of the driveway and up Oak Street out of sight.

Aunt Pearl was aghast and the local constable immediately summoned. “Don’t worry, Miss, we’ll catch them right away,” he said in a firm and comforting voice. “They are probably those hoodlum boys from over by the river.”

Alas, my sweet Aunt Pearl’s Dodge Wayfarer was never to be seen again and she replaced her favorite car with a 1952 Studebaker Land Cruiser. Until the day she passed, she always spoke fondly of her old Dodge, often commenting it was the best car she had ever owned. And we cousins were never allowed to bring our bicycles to Aunt Pearl’s home again.
I left the following comment beneath yours.

I am not particularly fond of the fact that you have chosen to brazenly broadcast family secrets regarding our dear departed Aunt Pearl in a venue such as this, but I can not let your half-accurate recollections stand uncontested.

Unbeknownst to you and the Jeepjunkie, but well known to BBB, the Horsefarmer, and myself, Aunt Pearl and her dear friend Dixie were known to imbibe of liquid elixirs and were often observed, with painted faces, in roundhouses and other venues of notorious repute, most recently, The Cat and Fiddle.

Pearl and Dixie, some say, however scandalously, liked the golden elixirs so much that each of them had a brand named after them, vast quantities of each which each of them kept in the back-porch refrigerator.

On the particular night in question, after we all had finished our bike rides and you and the jeep junkie were sound asleep in your bed, and Aunt Pearl and Dixie were on the back porch dancing to ‘poppa top again’, BBB, myself and the horsefarmer attempted to 'hotwire' the Wayfarer and go on a midnight ride.

BBB bypassed the key, Horsefarmer and I pushed the Dodge out the driveway and BBB popped the clutch and the Dodge sprang to life with a Mopar clang which Aunt Pearl and Dixie and apparently, judging from your transcription of memories above, you heard too.

The Horsefarmer and I jumped into the car at BBB's urgings. The fourth "hoodlum boy" you mention was Aunt Pearl's beagle dog, Boomerang (so-named because Aunt Pearl kept giving him away and he kept coming back. Gentlemanfarmer had a dog like that, he called him "Prodigal") jumping out of the back window because he thought Aunt Pearl had hired us to give him away again.

I was so afraid of the wrath of Aunt Pearl for even thinking we could take her prized Wayfarer on an unauthorized drive, that I convinced BBB and the Horsefarmer to ditch the car in the weeds down by the river.

Our plan was to dismantle the car and bring it back piece by piece and re-assemble it in Aunt Pearl's garage, a task that talked better than it worked and took longer than we anticipated.

By the time we got the fenders off, BBB said the heck with this, I'm going back to Aunt Pearl’s and face her wrath. The Horsefarmer concurred and quickly followed . Well, let me tell you there wasn't no way I was going to stay down by the river by myself either, so I left too.

When we got back to Aunt Pearl’s place, she and Dixie were six sheets to the wind on the back porch. BBB, the Horsefarmer and I all went to bed.

Before we could next get back to the car, Aunt Pearl had bought the Studebaker Land Cruiser-- (is this the car she had with sliding rear roof that she and Dixie would sit in the back while parked down by the river and watch the submarine races?)

And when we were able to slip away and head down to the river we never could find where we stashed the Dodge. Everything looked different in the daylight. All we got for our trouble was chigger bites, sunburns and wet shoes.

Do you remember how you had the Gentlefarmer convinced that you weren't speeding when you took the farm truck lickity split down the gravel road, four wheel drifting, to the mail box and sideswipped the bridge railing?
Well it was the same with BBB, the Horsefarmer and me. It was easy to convince Aunt Pearl that 'those hoodlum boys from over by the river" had taken her car then to let her know that BBB was the instigator.

Several years later, BBB swore he saw the Dodge, minus the front fenders, being driven downtown by a blind man. The Horsefarmer thinks he saw it parked in back of Swenson's Bakery full of cream pies and sporting a bumpersticker that said, "Hit me easy, I'm full of pie".

I think both those guys were smoking wacky tobacky or drinking too much Pearl and Dixie because I know what happened to the Dodge and, until I am certain that the statue of limitations is over, I ain't saying nothing.

This all happened back in 1952, 1953, I'm an old man now and I hadn't thought about this in over 60 years. I just wanted to set the record straight.

Sincerely, Your older brother,



Unknown said...

"Busplunge" has been included in this weeks A Sunday Drive. I hope this helps to attract even more new visitors here.

longrooffan said...

What can i say Bus? I leave a relatively innocuous comment over at Hemmings and now it is an internet sensation!! Well played Big Brother, Well Played. I must say this about that, I think YOU are Rick James's BEEAATCH.

Ayasha Kieth said...

Pictures posted here did so support that post.

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