Monday, March 3, 2008


Carrie told me I should vent here - it is supposed to be healthy. I am unique in a way that is not normally thought of as "unigue." Generally, people think of people like me as annoyingly-likely-to-rant, lame, or geeky in a focused and exclusionary way. So here I will drop harangues like Texas raindrops about subjects about which the world at large could not care any less.

I don't really have any friends that share my opinions about my passions (a special thanks to my focused, exclusionary hobbies). I am way into cars in a way that made more sense directly after the War to car enthusiasts - only I like fuel injection. I love fast cars, and I love reliable cars. I like cars that can handle well. I respect cars with a comfortable ride even though comfort is not very high on my list of priorities. However, quantifiable attributes take the back seat for me to the intangible: fun. My short list of dream cars includes the Mazda Miata (I want one SO BAD!!!), 1st and 2nd gen MR2's, basically every Lotus ever, and the McLaren F1. 

I love to drive; I hate to commute. Other driver's definitely don't share priorities with me. They are slow, stupid, and typically predictably unpredictable. I love engineering prowess in a vehicle - if it serves a real purpose. Making room for twankies will never count. Mostly, I love when a car can show real verve and spunk beyond its outright capabilities. 

I like car racing, but I have not yet had the opportunity to get very deep into it. I despise NASCAR for its comatose-levels of excitement. The "high"-lights are when things go wrong. I want to see the engineering and driving talent coalesce into something beautiful. Formula 1 in slow-motion is visually symphonic to me watching the suspension and the rest of the chassis turn untoward levels of power into forward motion and bumps into ether. It astonishes me to think of the forces those machines see and to see the cars absorb and dissipate them so elegantly. 

Sports Car racing - especially Le Mans and the American Le Mans Series - is perhaps my favorite. The rules allow for so many interpretations and such varied solutions to the same problem that I am interested before regarding the movement. It doesn't hurt that there is nary a shortage of action one the races are underway. 

I would love to know someone who can both speak in car-code with me, and love the magic of communicative steering. I know they are out there - I read their columns and articles every month in my four car magazine subscriptions. Here at BYU, and many other places, people who are into cars tend to be blinded by numbers. Speed, acceleration, lateral G-forces, braking force, and transient response can all contribute to some adrenalin, but there is more. I want a Lotus Elan. The first one - not the cheesy cop-out FWD that came later. I believe in lightness by design. I believe in fun in relative slowness. I believe that new Mercedes can be a yawn embodied in a car compared to a BMW. I have driven some wickedly fast, boring cars. I have owned a slow, deliriously fun car (MkI MR2). Of course, the WRX I just sold was fast and fun, but I really miss my MR2 - or Senor Dos as I knew the little guy. I understand perfectly the advantages of automatic transmissions and automated constant mesh gearboxes, but the connection between man and machine with the use of three pedals is irreplaceable. 

I love high-tech - for family cars. And possibly for hypercars. But I hope the Miata and Lotuses in general stick around. I wish we Americans weren't so stuck on airbags, stereos and A/C - without preaching about bling presently. It weighs so much, adds so little (except perhaps for the A/C - but I want the choice to go the masochist route), and has been over-hyped. I want a car with no radio and no place to hang my phone while set on speaker-phone-operation. The freedom that could provide might put masseuseses(es) out of business permanently. Unless they want to work on the stiff forearms and clenched jaws. Honestly, the biggest downside I can see in moving back the Motherland (obviously, Texas) someday is the lack of curves in the roads. I want a whole string of different character bends to test my mettle and let me meld with machine.

Pennsylvania, conversely, appeals to me solely for its delicious blacktop. Silky black ribbons meandering through gorgeous forests abound for my gleeful pleasure - pure automotive heaven. 

I think I could be buddies with Peter Egan - he is a sucker for an old Lotus, an old Ducati, an old Strat, and an old Marshall. I'll take all four, please.


Morgan said...


Excuse me if I come across a little delirious. I'm still in a state of shock from being able to read and understand most of your blog.

Welcome to the blogosphere. I'm looking forward to more of your ridiculous obsessions on cars and music. But wait, in this last blog you didn't say anything about music. What up? BTW, I'm still enjoying the CD you gave me.

Jennifer said...

I am enjoying learning more about you on your blog, Bri. I do NOT think of you as all that geeky mumbo-jumbo you were talking about. Well, not in a BAD way - mostly in an endearing way :)