Saturday Breakfast

During this coronavirus situation, my wonderful wife and I have basically subsisted on cereal (almost exclusively Cheerios for me), protein shakes and bars, and an occasional visit to Chick-fil-A. (I’m exaggerating a little for effect; our diet is actually somewhat more varied.) One brand of protein bars, think!, has been a revelation. While they are not low-calorie foods, for someone with my dietary needs and exercise regimen, they are a very tasty and important part of my diet. By the way, quality of calories counts at least as much as quantity.

One new flavor of think! bars that we have tried, Chocolate & Creme Cupcake, tastes better than many of the candy bars I’ve eaten in my life. Each bar has 18 grams of protein and just 2 grams of “regular” sugar. In all honesty, my GI tract has never behaved better during allergy season than it has this year on this “limited” diet. Maybe restaurant food will have to be restricted from here on out. Oh, this morning’s breakfast consisted of a bowl of Cheerios, a Chocolate Fudge think! bar and some iced coffee, black.

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I think it is still true that McPherson College in McPherson, Kansas is the only US institution of “higher learning” that offers a four-year degree in automobile restoration. Not surprisingly, the school is now offering a webinar that examines the wide-ranging effects of the automobile on modern life.

The title of my History paper my senior year in high school was “The Development Of The Automobile And Its Effect On 20th-Century American Society.” I have had the automobile bug for a LONG time.

In this post I offered the opinion (that’s what “opined” means) that too many American parents have been brainwashed into thinking that it is beneath their children for them to “work with their hands.” This country is experiencing a huge shortage of automotive technicians. Given the complexity of modern automotive systems, it is far beyond the capability of most car owners to perform major, and sometimes even minor, repairs on their vehicles. I think it’s great that McPherson offers a program in automobile restoration; I wish more colleges, two-year and four-year, and universities offered programs featuring working on cars.

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Three very interesting remarks courtesy of The Muscleheaded Blog:

 

Yogi Berra: “In theory, there is no difference between theory and practice. But in practice, there is.”

Groucho Marx: “I’ve had a wonderful time, but this wasn’t it.”

Dwight Eisenhower: “A people that values its privileges above its principles soon loses both.”

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As we have been busy with many chores around here, the search for a Corvette Companion/Grocery Car post-move has slowed. As I wrote here, the Maserati GranTurismo (2007-2010) is out of the running. Right now, I think the realistic choice is between these two cars: a 2000-2002 Cadillac Eldorado (ETC preferred, but not mandatory) and a 2006-07 Chevrolet Monte Carlo SS; we have to have an SS.

 

See the source image

See the source image

 

Both pictures are from Mecum Auctions; the top photo is a 2000 Eldorado ESC and the bottom is a 2007 Monte Carlo SS. No, we don’t have to have a car with a red exterior, but we will not buy a car with a dark interior, not in the desert.

As most of you reading are “car people” I would like to read your thoughts on this choice. Of course, in the end the decision will be ours to make, but qualified input is always welcome.

 

#think!

#McPhersonCollege

#TheMuscleheadedBlog

#CorvetteCompanion/GroceryCar

#somanycarsjustonelife

#disaffectedmusings

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Yabba Dabba Doo!

Don’t ask me why I am writing about The Flintstones today; I don’t know. I do know that I absolutely loved the cartoon when I was very young. My marvelous mom used to tell me that I was transfixed by the show (although she didn’t use the word “transfixed”), that I wouldn’t eat or do anything else except watch it when it was on.

I hope I don’t have to explain The Flintstones and its clever use of anachronisms, which was the heart of the show. The Flintstones, which first ran on ABC from September, 1960 to April, 1966, was the first animated show in prime-time on US television. As it relates to cars, a vehicle with holes in the floor is now often referred to as a Flintstones mobile as their vehicles were usually powered by the people who drove them using their feet to propel the car through an open floor.

From a WordPress blog a picture of the “cast” of the Flintstones:

 

See the source image

 

Any other Flintstones fans out there?

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The OnStar subscription in my Corvette expires in about six weeks. If I ever had any doubt about renewing, this story quashed that doubt. A C7 Z06 that was stolen from a parking garage in California was recovered due to OnStar’s theft alert feature. In addition, since the woman who owned the car had the Performance Data Recorder in Valet Mode, which secretly records video on an SD card in the glovebox, when the car’s electronics are fixed it is possible the theft and the thief will be on video.

As “happy” of an ending as this may be, it is a reminder to me of the fact that many people are evil and will do whatever they think they can get away with. That is a reason I don’t like to park my Z06 out of my sight. Here’s a picture of my car that I don’t think I’ve shown before:

 

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Are most of you tired of reading about the search for a Corvette companion/grocery car after we move to the desert? Sorry, but my obsession with that search cannot be helped. It is OCD, after all.

This may come as a surprise to those of you who have any interest, but it looks as if a 2007-2010 Maserati GranTurismo coupe is out of the running. My wonderful wife and I decided that both the acquisition cost and maintenance cost of the car will be too high for a third car.

Initially, I never wanted to spend more than about $20,000 to buy this vehicle. Even the least expensive of these Maseratis are listed at $27,000-$28,000. Obviously, service would not be inexpensive, either.

In a nationwide search for 8-cylinder convertibles and coupes built between 2000 and 2009, with fewer than 45,000 miles and listing for between $6,000 (a floor to exclude wrecked cars and cars sold on a salvage title) and $18,000, A LOT of these cars showed up. They are not a contender for purchase as they only have two seats, but I was amazed at how many were listed:

 

Used 2002 Ford Thunderbird Deluxe Bridgewater, NJ 08807 - 535526335 - 7

 

From AutoTrader a picture of a 2002 Ford Thunderbird. Of the 203 cars that were returned as fitting the criteria of the nationwide search, 71 of them were last-generation Ford Thunderbirds. By the way, one or two older Maserati coupes circa 2004 were listed.

I know John Kraman‘s wife is quite the fan of these cars; how about anyone else?

 

#YabbaDabbaDoo!

#TheFlintstones

#OnStar

#CorvetteCompanion/GroceryCar

#LastGenerationFordThunderbird

#somanycarsjustonelife

#disaffectedmusings

If you like this blog please tell your friends and share the blog URL (https://disaffectedmusings.com). Thanks.

 

 

Go West, Young Man

The line attributed to Horace Greeley seems appropriate today as it was on this day 25 years ago that I left the mid-Atlantic (where I was born and raised) and moved to California. I moved to work for the San Diego Padres. Although the team won two NL Western Division titles and a National League Championship in the three full seasons I was Director of Baseball Operations, the experience was a disappointment professionally. To be honest, one of the reasons I accepted the Padres’ offer is I thought the team would be relocated to Washington, DC and, therefore, I would return to the mid-Atlantic, anyway.

I was the de facto #3 person in the Baseball Operations hierarchy, with hopes to advance in the world of baseball and was older than the two people ahead of me. I was in a hurry to advance, probably in too much of a hurry even given my age. My real boss was the team President/CEO as he was the one who hired me. Although at times he would say that at some point in the future he would consider me for the top spot, General Manager, he was really just saying what he thought he needed to say in order for me to stay, which I guess I should consider as a compliment. I began to feel trapped and continued to have aspirations for advancement, if not with the Padres then with another team.

As I have written before (wish I could find the post) I resigned from the Padres during the 1999 season in the hopes of moving up “the food chain” in major league baseball. Although I was in the running for an Assistant GM position with another team, I didn’t get it and never again worked as a full-time employee of a team. I did resurrect my baseball career as a consultant and had a lucrative practice for a long time until baseball decided I was obsolete. (Perception is reality even if it isn’t.)

While my move to California did not eventuate as I had hoped in terms of my career, the move had one incredible benefit: I met the wonderful woman who has been my wife for almost 21 years. I don’t really believe in destiny. While it’s true we don’t have total control over our lives, to think one’s life journey is all preordained just seems like 360 degrees of wrong to me.

I had another job offer at the same time the Padres offered me the job. The “other” position would have enabled me to stay in the mid-Atlantic and would have let me add a non-baseball position to my resume. If I had accepted that job, and I was very close to doing so, I never would have met my wonderful wife. To those of you who think my decision was already made, I say b*llsh*t! Of course, I am very glad how everything turned out in my personal life. V Squared, I LOVE YOU!!!

Somewhat ironically, history is about to repeat itself as my wonderful wife and I have set the wheels in motion to move to the desert. While current events demonstrate that we are subject to exogenous forces, in the end it is highly likely we will move in the near future and that I will, once again, leave the mid-Atlantic and go west. Of course, this time I am not a young man.

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OK, you knew I would eventually get to this point. I am going to show pictures of the three cars that are currently under consideration to be our Corvette companion/grocery car after we move. I am very interested to read your opinions and if you want to rank them or tell me your favorite, I would be very happy to read your thoughts.

 

See the source image

Picture of 2007 Chevrolet Monte Carlo SS FWD, exterior, gallery_worthy

 

The Jaguar XJS photo is from Barrett-Jackson, the Monte Carlo SS photo is from Car Gurus and the picture of the Maserati GranTurismo was taken by yours truly at the Mecum auction in Glendale, Arizona in March. Using any criteria you wish feel free to offer your choice and your thoughts.

Although we still have a lot of moving parts, we are already preparing to move (see what I did there). Not too long after the move, we will almost certainly buy another car.

Stay safe and be well.

 

#GoWestYoungMan

#CorvetteCompanion/GroceryCar

#somanycarsjustonelife

#disaffectedmusings

If you like this blog please tell your friends and share the blog URL (https://disaffectedmusings.com). Thanks.