Should you find yourself reading this month's issue of STREET RODDER for the first time it's probably the middle of the summer. Of course, that begs the following, "What the heck are you doing inside and why aren't you outside rolling along?" Street rodding is an interactive hobby and best enjoyed when one participates. No room for lawn chairs here.
For starters, you can enjoy our hobby any number of different ways, but driving, whether it be from the garage to the parts store or from rod run to rod run, should be our unrelenting goal. After 30-plus years of attending virtually every event, endless club functions, and numerous (although not enough) Saturday morning donut runs, it still comes as a surprise just how much I enjoy driving my roadster. It doesn't matter how small or large or near or far the event or destination, it's all about being part of the fun. I have never, that's right, never, failed to enjoy backing my roadster out of the garage and pointing it in any direction. The best: merging onto a highway and "squeezing" the throttle, all the time gliding up to speed where exhaust and wind work in harmony. Yep, all is good when there's plenty of wind in the hair and sunshine on the forehead. (Of course, should you be a candidate for the Hair Club For Men, like ol' Editor Brennan, a sunburn generally follows.) Oh well, it's for a good cause. It's all about seeing our collective "pasts" disappearing in a rearview mirror.
Now that I have all of you fired up and ready to drive, where do you go? Turn to the back of any issue of SRM and you will find the Happenings column, which literally lists dozens upon dozens of events on every weekend throughout the summer and numerous other events throughout all those other non-summer weekends. (Remember, if you want to list your club event please follow the directions and format provided at the beginning of the column. We must have your typed, or e-mailed, information at least 120 days prior to your event's scheduled date.) But it shouldn't stop there.
None of us needs an event to enjoy our street rod. At least we shouldn't. There's nothing wrong with buds hangin' out and driving around. Some of the best times I have had in my roadster were, and will continue to be, unscheduled drives that spontaneously occur. You know how it goes, you have just detailed your ride to the max and it looks too good to just sit there. The next thing you know you are miles from home and you and yours are soaking up the glamour of the drive.
Although I have conversed with many non-car people during my travels, some of my most interesting dialogs have occurred while in my roadster. There is something about driving a street rod that "breaks" the ice and allows people to open up and ask you the proverbial arm-long list of questions about your car and the hobby itself. And therein lies a great deal of the fun associated with driving a street rod. Yes, there's the visceral experience--one should never forget or underestimate the shear physical pleasure and emotional joy associated with the simple act of driving a street rod. But, one should never underestimate the enjoyment of talking about street rods with non-rodders. For sure it's fun, but there's something else that shouldn't be lost in the mix.
Each of us is an ambassador for our hobby. How we conduct ourselves leads others to believe things (rightly or wrongly) about us as individuals as well as about the integrity of our hobby. Whether we travel the road alone or well traveled with others, we need to enjoy ourselves while at the same time making sure to place our "collective" best foot forward. Let's all make sure that those outside our hobby are influenced in such a way that they too will think well enough of us to become one of us.
Well, while you finish reading this month's issue of SRM remember that I am probably going to, or getting back from, the NSRA Nationals in, you should know this, Louisville, Kentucky. What makes this year more fun for yours truly than most is the fact that I will arrive via street rod rather than my customary 4:35 p.m. exit-aisle seat. Yes, I have managed to deliver myself via an Alloway-built Deuce roadster to three major events this summer. It's all part of developing stories to show just how much fun one can have driving to a summer's worth of events. It's also about driving an Alloway Hot Rods-built car all the while reporting on what we find. This exercise should prove interesting for you the reader as well as most entertaining for yours truly. Hmmm, "What the heck am I doing inside and why aren't I outside rolling along?"