Where Is Cristy Lee?

Motor Trend’s TV coverage of the Barrett-Jackson auction in Scottsdale, Arizona began yesterday. Very conspicuous by her absence was Cristy Lee, who has been a fixture of these telecasts. Apparently, she won’t be participating in this auction. Here is a cryptic note from her social media accounts:

 

“This year has already started off crazy busy for me, but in a good way cuz you know I love that hustle. I just couldn’t make it out to AZ this week. Lots of exciting things in the works though-so stay tuned kids!!”

 

Is she off the Barrett-Jackson broadcasts for good? That would be a real shame. Anyway, from showbizpost.com a picture of the gorgeous Cristy Lee:

 

See the source image

 

For updates please click here and here and here.

(October, 2020 update: Cristy Lee is, I assume, under contract to Discovery Communications, the “parent” company of the Motor Trend “network,” which was the former “TV home” of Barrett-Jackson. The Barrett-Jackson auctions are now being aired on History and fyi, which are jointly owned by Disney and Hearst Communications, not Discovery. Perhaps a way could have been found to have her continue being a part of the Barrett-Jackson telecasts, perhaps not, but she will not be a part of the broadcasts for the foreseeable future. In fact, in the next year or so you may see her on a different type of show on another Discovery outlet, HGTV.)

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Dr. Zal will remember this record, but I doubt many others will. This was one of my favorite songs when I was 11-12 and I think may have been the first 45 I ever purchased. Of course, I still have it. To wit:

 

 

While listening to music yesterday this song popped into my head. Even though I have the 45 I decided to buy it from iTunes. I have listened to it 3-4 times since last night—the first time in decades I have heard the song—and am glad that this is my earworm for now.

“Double Barrel” is a reggae/ska song and I must admit it does not exactly have strong lyrics. Something about the beat and the background music, though, are just irresistible to me. By the way, iTunes charged me 99 cents for this song. That is what I used to pay for 45s in the 1970s.

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Back to Barrett-Jackson…yesterday a 1963 Buick Riviera was offered for sale. Here is a picture:

 

1963 BUICK RIVIERA - Front 3/4 - 237283

 

As my mind starts to think more in terms of one of these as a companion to my Z06—again, barring an unforeseen windfall this purchase is 2-3 years away—I am paying closer attention to auction results and listing prices. This example hammered for $22,000 meaning the buyer paid $24,200 all in. I think two other Rivieras of this generation are being auctioned this week by Barrett-Jackson. Many who follow the automotive market think that the Barrett-Jackson auction in Scottsdale is not a good guide to the “value” of cars as they believe the frenzy of the large crowd pushes the prices above market.

I have seen cars like this listed in the $15,000 range on Hemmings and Classic Cars. As these are not very expensive or rare (Buick built 112,244 Rivieras from 1963-65) I don’t absolutely have to have a stock drivetrain.

As always I welcome comments. Also, please feel free to “like” this post (or any other) by clicking on the “Like” button.

 

#CristyLee

#DoubleBarrel

#1963BuickRiviera

#somanycarsjustonelife

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Frugal Friday

First…even though their market share in the US was less than two percent, in the third quarter of 2019 electric cars still outsold cars equipped with…manual transmissions. (Sorry, can’t remember where I read this, but I’m virtually certain this is correct.) I believe that 1.8% of new cars sold in the US in that quarter were electric and 1.1% had manual transmissions. The latter figure has to be an all-time low.

I will offer the opinion, somewhat heretical in some corners, that at least in the US the manual transmission is already dead on its feet, but no one has had the decency to knock it over and to give it a proper burial. I will also offer the opinion that many of those, but not all, with a stated preference for manual transmissions are actually engaging in signaling.

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The last Frugal Friday car of 2019 was a Buick and so the first Frugal Friday cars of 2020 will also be Buicks. First, the current Mecum auction in Kissimmee, Florida offered a car like this for sale yesterday:

 

See the source image

 

This is not the actual car—Mecum does not allow the online photos of current and recent lots to be captured—but it is a car offered at a Mecum auction in 2011. This is a 1990 Buick Reatta convertible, of which only 2,132 were built. While I prefer the coupe in appearance, I have always liked the way these cars look. When I moved to California in the mid-1990s I wanted to buy one, but the Buick/GMC/Pontiac dealer from whom I eventually purchased my Pontiac Grand Prix did not seem to want to find me a used Reatta. Production of the Reatta ended in 1991.

Anyway, the Reatta convertible offered yesterday sold, all in, for $3,850. Yep, $3,850. Even if you needed to put that much in it after purchase and had to spend $1,500 to ship the car (I paid much less than that to have my 2016 Corvette Z06 shipped to me from Oklahoma), you’d only be in the car for about $9,000. Everyone from Mecum to Hagerty to Barrett-Jackson is telling us that cars from the 1980s and 1990s are becoming more popular and should continue to do so. While except in rare instances like a 1930s Duesenberg I would never recommend buying a car as an investment, buying something like this could prove to be a money-making endeavor. Even if it doesn’t, you would own a fun, good-looking car (IMO) that is probably not too bad on gas and that could probably still be serviced by Buick dealers for less than ten grand up front.

A car similar to this next one was featured in my Ultimate Garage 2.0. While not a 1965 model, this Hemmings ad shows a car in which I would have interest, especially at the asking price of $16,950: a 1963 Buick Riviera:

 

 

While I wax nostalgic for cars like a 1963 Studebaker Gran Turismo Hawk or a 1956 Packard Four Hundred, if/when I buy a companion to my Z06 the practicality of having the car serviced could steer me away (see what I did there…) from a car like that to a car like this. I am not a mechanic and don’t know if I want to start wrenching in my 60s. In addition, if I were ordered to limit my Ultimate Garage to five cars, this generation Riviera would definitely make the cut.

As always I welcome thoughts from you. Have a good weekend…

 

#FrugalFriday

#1990BuickReatta

#1963BuickRiviera

#somanycarsjustonelife

#disaffectedmusings

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