The Motor Gods Smiled

  • December 3, 2023

Some of you may have seen the Viking funeral I gave my ’76 Trans-Am’s rear tires – which were both very old and nearly bald. I bought a new pair to replace them but figured I’d use the old ones one last time, so as to get maximum use out of what was left of them. Here’s the video of that event:

Afterward, I drove the Great Pumpkin home and parked it in the garage, figuring I’d deal with the tires in a couple of days when I could find the time. A couple of days passed and I hadn’t yet found the time. A nice day came – this was last week – when I almost drove the car into town (another one last time) rather than drive something boring. Had I done so, it would have been very exciting.

But the Motor Gods intervened – and whispered in my ear to drive something else that day instead and so I did.

A couple of days later, I found the time to pull the rear wheels off the car, in order to schlepp them over to my buddy’s shop to have him remove the old skins and mount and balance the new ones.

As per that epic prank call of a few years ago after an Asiana flight crashed – Ho Li Fuk! 

The driver’s side rear tire was shaped like a malformed doughnut. Underlying steel belts were poking through what was left of the rubber. It is astounding the tire held together long enough to get home from the funeral. It is all-but-certain it would not have held up much longer had I taken the fateful decision to drive the Pumpkin into town, as I had almost done.

A catastrophic failure at speed might have Epsteined the Libertarian Car Guy!

Lucky for me, the Motor Gods interceded.

I took the remains of the tires to my buddy’s shop and he installed the new skins. These ought to be good for another 20 years (which is how old the old ones were) if I can manage to resist the temptation to let the Pumpkin’s 455 do its thing, which – these days – is a necessary tonic to keep up one’s spirits.

But I can now perform what amounts to playin’ outlawed tunes on outlawed pipes without worrying about getting caught because the Pumpkin got immobilized at the scene. It’s best to be able to depart with alacrity, leaving only the smoke and smoldering black stripes on the road to mark your passing.

. . .

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