Monday Monday

Monday Monday, can’t trust that day…of course those are a small part of the lyrics from the song by The Mamas and The Papas. As a retired person Monday doesn’t really have significance for me, but for my wonderful wife it is still her least favorite day of the week. Fortunately, except for when she is out of town on business (which is not more than about 8-10 weeks a year), she works from home.


I had a weird dream last night/this morning. (Yes, once again, it’s OK to think “consider the source.”) I dreamt I looked out the window and everything, except the road and sidewalk, was painted red, and I mean a vibrant red. I don’t think I was home, but perhaps in a hotel out of town. I didn’t want to wake my wonderful wife so I just stared out the window. I have read that men don’t dream in color, but I do, obviously. I wish my friend Richard Segal were still alive because he was good at interpreting dreams, even mine. Of course, I wish he were still alive, period.


For much of yesterday Most Valuable Packard and Most Valuable Studebaker were neck and neck for number of views, but the Packard post pulled away, which is not surprising because it was the more recent post. Internet “attention spans” are frighteningly short.

Thanks again to 56packardman for putting the link to both posts on the appropriate forums. Yesterday’s number of views was even higher than Saturday’s for the best two-day total since Bill James tweeted the main link to Disaffected Musings in early April. Thanks for reading, but please keep reading and please tell your friends about this blog.


Does anyone reading this really want me to chime in on the impeachment hearings? All I’ll write is that I think it is highly unlikely that a Senate with a Republican majority will cast 67 votes to end the President’s tenure. As Ambrose Bierce wrote many years ago, “Politics is a strife of interests masquerading as a contest of principles, public affairs conducted for private advantage.”


Did any of you notice that neither Throwback Thursday nor Frugal Friday appeared last week? In an effort to shake up the blog I have decided that those features will no longer appear every week. Once again, I welcome suggestions and comments from any and all readers, as long as they are not profane or mean-spirited.


This recent Hemmings article is about the first AMX/3 and the fact that it is, finally, about to undergo a restoration. As the sub-head for this Motor Trend article stated, “AMC’s supercar is a mesmerizing example of shoulda’, woulda’, coulda’–and nearly did.”


See the source image


From Keith Martin’s Sports Car Market a picture of the exceedingly rare AMC AMX/3. From the Motor Trend piece: “No doubt about it: The AMX/3 stands as the undisputed magnum opus of Dick Teague’s distinguished, near-40-year career in automotive design…the AMX/3 was an Italo-American hybrid. Giotto Bizzarrini sheparded the chassis development work and the construction of the first six prototypes in Turin. Having been involved in numerous Ferrari and Iso designs, not to mention cars he built and sold under his own name, Bizzarrini certainly qualified for the job.”

However, the AMX/3 was powered by AMC’s 390 cubic-inch V8 that generated 340 HP and a stout 430 LB-FT of torque. Of course, it was Teague and his team who drew the swoopy, voluptuous body. Once again, from Motor Trend:


“Numerous factors conspired to keep the AMX/3 from making it to AMC showrooms. A massive union strike brought the company to its financial knees and rendered several special projects–like a low-volume supercar–irrelevant. And further number crunching revealed AMC would have to charge at least $12,000 for the car–about 20 percent more than Ford was asking for the De Tomaso [Pantera].”

“Teague told Bob Stevens in an interview for Muscle Cars of the ’60s and ’70s, that ‘…the program was done on a shoestring, and we were on the verge of entering a new era. The musclecar period was ending, and industry priorities were starting to change.’ Safety bumpers, catalytic converters, fuel economy, emissions, gas-shortage hoaxes–you know the rest.”


For the nth plus nth time I will offer that fewer companies building cars means fewer sources for innovation in styling and in engineering, even in the face of strict government regulation. More competition is almost always better for consumers, a lesson lost on so many in government.







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Mittwoch Musings

October 10?! Once again, Mittwoch (“Middle of the Week”) is the German/Yiddish word for Wednesday.

Based on the specific “referrals” to the site, and as far as I can surmise, yesterday’s out of context post title (Mutant Zombies) may have attracted one or two readers who might not otherwise have read Disaffected Musings. Were any regular readers put off by the title?


From Ambrose Bierce: “A conservative is a statesman who is enamored of existing evils, as distinguished from a liberal who wishes to replace them with other evils.”

Bierce also said, “Politics is a strife of interests masquerading as a contest of principles. The conduct of public affairs for private advantage.”

Bierce was a renowned writer/poet and a journalist who served in the Union Army for virtually the entire Civil War. In late 1913 he traveled to Mexico in an attempt to experience the Mexican Revolution first-hand. He was never seen again.


Even noted finance publication Barron’s has taken note of the restomod industry. Long-time friend and Disaffected Musings reader Robert sent me this link. The article is about restomod Mustangs by a company called Revology founded by Tom Scarpello, a long-time auto industry veteran. What I found interesting and amusing is that the tone of this article makes it seem like Scarpello invented the idea of the restomod, even though that actual word is not used. Of course, restomods have been around a long time. Maybe people who read Barron’s have no idea.


I’m still in a moratorium on writing about or showing C2 Corvettes. (Technically, I guess I just violated the moratorium.) I have been re-reading More Than They Promised, a history of Studebaker, by Thomas Bonsall. If I didn’t want to push away the rapidly increasing number of readers I would show a lot of charts from the book. These charts, on things like sales data and assets, fascinate me, but I’m more than a bit of an oddball as any regular reader knows.

Five-ish years ago I would not have had any interest in a car like this:

This is a photo (by yours truly) of a 1932 “custom” Studebaker St. Regis. By custom I mean the car has a non-standard body that includes extra-long doors. Most people think of Studebaker as a lower-price make and, of course, that was the reality for much of Studebaker’s existence. However, the real world is almost always more complicated than our distillations of it. People who engage in what I call impossible distillations of reality are usually off the mark.

This car is quite handsome in person, but one would not expect to see too many museum pieces in a state of squalor. Once again, if you are a car aficionado please do all that you can, within your means, to support the hobby. That might include membership in an automobile museum.

October 10?!