Just some thoughts:
Remember as a kid hearing folks give you that business about the bird in the hand versus two in the bush? I do. A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush. Meaning you might be better off with what you got, than what you think you need.
I learned that costly lesson when I was about eighteen or nineteen years old. It was the winter of my freshman year in college. For some reason I got the bright idea that I needed a different set of wheels. At that time I was driving (my first car) a 1949 pea green four door (un cool) Chevy. I had bought it from Crossin Chevy in Farmersburg, Indiana. It had been on their used car lot and I bought it for the grand price of $225 dollars. Looking back It probably was the best mechanical car I have ever owned. But it just no longer fit what I felt was a college boys imagine. It did have a great radio with rear seat speakers. Had a knob on the dash you could flip and the tunes would go to the back of the car. It sure did make Chuck Berry, Jimmy Reed or Slim Harpo sound awfully good on a Saturday night date. I especially remember Floyd Cramer’s “Last Date” playing one night.
Fast forward. I found an ad in the paper for a 1956 Ford Crown Victoria. The description went something like this: 1956 Ford Crown Victoria, all black with white over lay, stick shift, dual glass packs, spinner hub caps, roll pleated seats, twin rear seat speakers. You gettin’ the picture. Last line of the ad: Priced right. I could already see myself behind the wheel.
I remember I took my dad with me to look at the car. He was not impressed with things like spinner hub caps and twin rear seat speakers. He was more interested in crawling under the car and looking or raising the hood and listening. Bottom line his advice: “Larry I don’t think I’d buy this car.” Eighteen and nineteen year old boys often don’t listen to advice coming from “older people.” I bought the car.
Cut to the chase. Less than two months later the engine blew up on my new find. I ended up selling the car at a loss. Its replacement was a 1953 robin egg blue four door Chevy. No rear seat speakers. I drove that car for the next four years until I graduated college. For the next four years I struggled with that car as no heater, two windows would not go up or down, had a small hole in the passengers side floor board (you could see the ground), broken radio antenna, often would not go in reverse gear, had one tail light out. I could go on and on. By the time I graduated in 1964 she was one sick puppy.
Today as I was driving to my coffee shop I saw a 1956 Ford Crown Victoria sitting in the drive way of a house. I wanted….well I won’t say what I wanted to do…or what I thought. But those old bird words came back to me.
“A bird in the hand is better than two in the bush.”
“Sometimes you are better off with what you got than what you think you need.”
That is still true today.
August 18, 2018
Posted September 9, 2018