T Minus Five Days

Yes, OCD “sufferer”/Numbers Nerd that I am I am counting to my first “damn virus” vaccine. As I write this it’s actually a little less than five days because my appointment is quite early in the morning, earlier than I am writing this today.

I am still quite upset that my wonderful wife does not have an appointment despite much trying by both of us. I know the probability that she will be vaccinated when she accompanies me is not 100%.

While, in all honesty, we have been affected far less by the damn virus than much of the population, the last year has not been great. I would also offer my opinion that life will never go back to exactly the way it was before.

What do you think? How many of you have been partly/fully vaccinated or have an appointment to receive a shot?



Today, our high temperature here will be in the low 80s. It’s hard to believe that only about six weeks ago, this was a view from our house:



I did enjoy the snow, especially since it melted two hours after it stopped snowing, except in the surrounding mountains.


Frustratingly, the issues with writing posts in WordPress using the FireFox browser have not completely gone away. About 1-2 days a week, like today, the issues with the disappearing toolbar and the word count not updating in real time appear.

Hey, WordPress! Can you fix this for good?!


A picture from a place that we will probably never visit again, the AACA Museum in Hershey, Pennsylvania:



Only about 6,600 GTO convertibles were produced in 1964. Of course, that alone was more than the total number of GTOs Pontiac management expected to produce in the debut year of the GTO option.

One thing I have missed during this last year is attending automotive events and venues. As you may recall, we did attend one outdoor auto show during the first weekend after we moved, but were put off by the low proportion of people wearing masks. Oddly, in a supermarket or big box hardware retailer, virtually every customer wears a mask and all of the staff are masked.

Here’s to hoping the light at the end of the tunnel is not an oncoming train.








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Saturday Stockpile

I hope readers don’t think pile of sh*t when they see today’s post title…



An update to yesterday’s post…we bottomed out at 29 degrees. I can’t really tell if less pollen was in the air and, for some reason, I didn’t think to check the pollen counts. It’s raining here today, which gives us a temporary reprieve, I think.

Yes, I have tried those nasal steroid sprays. All they do is make me very sick. I guess the immune system response in my nose goes to zero when I use them.



You really have to look at this photo on a screen larger than the one on your smartphone. I think my wonderful wife and I were ascending Camelback Mountain in Phoenix.

The desert motif is not for everyone, nor does it have to be, but I have grown quite fond. NO ONE has a monopoly on good taste or good judgment.



Obviously, a picture from the Mecum Glendale auction conducted last month, probably the last live car event for awhile. This is a 1965 Ford Mustang (duh) fastback or 2+2. The car hammered sold at $33,000 or $36,300 all in.

When I first “got into” cars–when my age was still in single digits or a LONG time ago–I was very fond of these. They occupied a prominent place in that hard-cover, black and white composition notebook of which I have written many times.

Speaking of early Mustangs:



The three photos were taken at the AACA Museum in Hershey, Pennsylvania. My wonderful wife and I are members although it is hardly next door.


Speaking of Arizona automobile auctions:



This is a most impressive 1958 Pontiac Bonneville convertible from the Barrett-Jackson auction in Scottsdale, Arizona in January, 2019. Note that the front of the hood reads “Bonneville” and not “Pontiac.”

In an ideal world where my wonderful wife and I had a higher net worth and/or I was adept at wrenching on cars, something like this would make a great Corvette companion. It certainly would be a nice contrast to a pair of C7 Corvettes.

The coronavirus situation has shut down the monthly car “show” that is sponsored by our local Corvette club, of which my wonderful wife and I are now members. As we live only about two miles from the site of the gathering we attend often. I doubt the May show will happen as it is always held the first Saturday of the month and we live in a state for whom the stay-at-home order has been extended through May 15. We can hope for June…









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Photo Dump

A rather inelegant post title, but so be it. I find that many of the photos that I think are so great in the moment I take them are actually not so great when I look at them later. I took a lot of pictures at the AACA Museum during our recent trip, but many of them are just meh. Anyway, here are most of the good ones that I have not yet posted.



We all thought this ’31 Stude President was breathtaking and not in a Seinfeld kind of way. Once again (and again), I think photos like this are not designed to be viewed on a smartphone screen.



Obviously, this is a 1937 Studebaker State President Coupe.



This is a 1930 Cord L-29. Currently, the car is not on display in the main museum building, but is in the “overflow” building. The AACA Museum hasn’t always made this building available for public viewing, but now offers access for an extra fee. The fee is well worth it, in my opinion.



Also in the overflow building a 1938 Lincoln Model K convertible that my wonderful wife just loves. It is quite a car to behold.



This is Tucker #1001. The AACA Museum has a permanent exhibit on the Tucker automobile. Three cars are displayed and one of the replicas made for the movie about Preston Tucker is also there. In addition, the exhibit has blueprints, advertising, etc.

Museums—and not just automobile museums—are closing all over the country. Sorry, kiddos but the virtual world does not equal the real one.












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Monday Museum Musings

Yesterday, as a delayed Fathers Day gift my wonderful wife and I took her parents to the AACA Museum in Hershey, Pennsylvania. Her father is a big Studebaker fan and the museum is currently hosting a large Studebaker exhibit. Although my wife and I are museum members the nearly 200-mile round trip keeps us from visiting more often than we do.

Perhaps the big highlight for me was seeing the Studebaker Sceptre concept car in person for the first time. The car is on loan to the AACA Museum from the Studebaker museum in South Bend, Indiana. Without further ado:



By the way, showing photos in this blog is why I am glad I still use a desktop computer with a big monitor. I’m sorry, but you just can’t appreciate photos from the screen of a smartphone.

I think Brooks Stevens was a genius. After his death in 1995 the New York Times called him “a major force in industrial design.” Another great Stevens design was the Studebaker Gran Turismo Hawk. In the bottom most of the four photos above you can see the red ’64 in the upper left. Here are some better pictures:



This is probably the finest GT Hawk I’ve ever seen. Stevens redesigned the Hawk, by this time a dated looking car, for a pittance and came up with a car that still looks good today. Tell me why I’ve left the GT Hawk out of both Ultimate Garages…

The AACA Museum is also hosting a small Pontiac exhibit that includes three GTOs. The only one of real interest to me is this one, a 1964 model.



It means nothing to anyone else, but I find something interesting in the fact that the last model year for the Studebaker GT Hawk is the same as the first year for the Pontiac GTO, 1964. I was just a wee lad, but I was alive at that time.

We all had a marvelous time. Kudos to Bill and to Warren, two volunteers at the museum who were so generous with their time and knowledge.










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Is it really December, 2018?! Time flies whether you’re having fun or not.

My condolences to the family and friends of George H.W. Bush. Someone I hired for his first full-time job in baseball had opportunities to interact with President Bush and had nothing but wonderful things to say about him.


No excusing Kareem Hunt’s actions, but I am surprised the Chiefs released him. I am also reminded of something I tell people about my time in baseball: except for their ability to play baseball, most baseball players are entirely unremarkable people. I suspect that applies to football players as well.



The AACA Museum in Hershey, PA has a new exhibit entitled LAND YACHTS: Postwar American Luxury Convertibles. My wonderful wife had the day off yesterday (her company is very generous with PTO) so we made the long drive to Hershey to see the exhibit.

My two favorite cars in the exhibit were parked next to each other right in the lobby by the front door.

This is a picture of a 1966 Buick Wildcat. The beautiful wheels were a factory option. This car was available with three different engine options: the base 401 cubic-inch V8 with a four-barrel carburetor producing 325 HP/445 LB-FT of torque, a 425 cubic-inch V8 with a four-barrel carburetor rated at 340 HP/465 LB-FT and the same 425 cubic-inch engine with two four-barrel carburetors rated at 360 HP/465 LB-FT.

I don’t know how much the picture conveys, but in person this car looked just stunning to me. By the way, despite the fact that this is a two-door model it is 220 inches in length, more than 18 feet. Buick produced about 5,400 Wildcat convertibles in 1966 in both regular and Custom trim.


My other favorite of this exhibit is this 1954 Packard. My (insane) obsession with defunct American makes is well-known to regular readers of Disaffected Musings.

1954 was the year of the Packard/Studebaker merger that, ultimately, contributed to the demise of both companies, IMO. Perhaps 56packardman would like to weigh in about this topic. This was also the last year that Packard offered an inline 8-cylinder engine. The undersquare (bore<stroke) motor displaced 359 cubic inches and was rated at 212 HP/330 LB-FT of torque. The Packard-developed Ultramatic automatic transmission was used.

Only 863 of these cars were produced and Packard only produced about 31,000 cars in total for 1954, of which about 23,000 were the “plebian” Clipper. This was a very poor year for Packard as 1953 had seen about 90,000 cars produced of which about 64,000 were Clippers. By the way, I am only counting finished cars and not chassis. Packard built about 500 chassis in 1953 that were bodied by another company.

I firmly believe that if one is a car enthusiast they should support the hobby in any way they can within their means. My wonderful wife and I are AACA Museum members, despite the fact that it is a schlepp to drive there and back.