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Comical reactions to your car


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So yesterday my wife and I were out for a drive in our 1914 Chandler, stopped at a light. A kid (probably about 20) pulls up in a modern Civic. He rolls his window down and is real enthusiastic about a car just from the look on his face. The first question he asks is how old it is.  I am always curious to know what year other people think it is before I tell them. His response is 1949, sorry no its 1914, WOW!

 

The next question was how long have you owned it. I fibbed just a bit and said were were the original owners, though my wife and I are only in our early 50's. No matter he was blown away that we were original owners. The light turned green and he drove off amazed at the old car he just saw and the old still people driving it. I know I was wrong, but we got a good laugh out of it.

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In 1971 I was driving a 1910 E-M-F in Houston.  I was 35.  A convertible pulled up next to me at a light.  The driver was as cute as can be, short shorts, long legs, cut-down halter, the whole nine yards.  She looked up at me, blinked her gorgeous eyes, gave me a wide smile (and I melted) and said:  "That is a dahlin' cah! Did yew buy it new?"

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I had my 31 Franklin Derham bodied victoria out and was driving to pick a friend up so we could then go to a club event. The weather was cloudy and very overcast , threatening rain. I stopped at a traffic light and a car pulled up , guy rolls his window down and asked "what are you going to do, its going to rain!!!" I reached up and pulled the knob that started the vacuum wiper to work on the windshield. He saw that and got red in the face, really annoyed and when the light changed, sped away! I used to drive that car in 4 1/2 + hours of steady rain to get to the Franklin Club annual meet every August, never thought anything of it. Also drove my 41 Packard 120 woody to Hershey in the era of the blue flea market field , and saw mud on the bottom of the fenders, and difficulty getting out as the doors swelled up with the moisture so we had to exit via the tail gate after climbing over the seats.

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I had the 38 at a gas station with three or four guys around it asking questions. One of the young wife’s came walking up and said “Will you please leave so my husband will get our gas and we can get out of here! “

 

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31 minutes ago, oldcarfudd said:

In 1971 I was driving a 1910 E-M-F in Houston.  I was 35.  A convertible pulled up next to me at a light.  The driver was as cute as can be, short shorts, long legs, cut-down halter, the whole nine yards.  She looked up at me, blinked her gorgeous eyes, gave me a wide smile (and I melted) and said:  "That is a dahlin' cah! Did yew buy it new?"

I bet I know what color her hair was!!

 

Craig

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1 minute ago, SC38DLS said:

I had the 38 at a gas station with three or four guys around it asking questions. One of the young wife’s came walking up and said “Will you please leave so my husband will get our gas and we can get out of here! “

 

That is proof everyone has it all wrong!  Its WOMEN who are killing the old-car hobby!

 

Craig

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I had my 1948 Ford Station wagon at a gas station. A guy comes over walks around it a few times and says "what is it made out of?" I say Maple. There is a pause and he says "I know it is supposed to look like wood, but what are the wood parts made out of?" I say wood. He says something to the affect of if I don't want to tell him I am not a nice person and he walks off. As he is walking away I say It is wood from a maple tree. He just kept walking.

 

When I am driving brass era cars people tend to have crazy reactions. For example stopping halfway across intersections to take a photo with their phone. They also ask unique questions. One of the best is "What is that thing?" My response is "An automobile". Which usually gets another question or a laugh.

 

I had my 1946 Jeep CJ-2A at a friends house. His neighbor came over and told me I shouldn't have it on the road. I asked why to which he explained to me that it wasn't a real car. He went on to explain that it was illegal to drive on the street. Because it wasn't real. It took some time to explain it was real. His big hang ups where the lack of top, doors, and windshield.

 

Maybe the best of all time. I had my 1953 GMC Fire Engine at a gas station. I was in a small town with lots of tourists. A lady walks up and asks if there was a fire. I said no. She asks of there was a parade. I say no. Then she says so you are just out here driving around wasting tax payers money? I said not at all. Then she wanted my name and badge number so she could call my chief and report me. The owner of the gas station who is a friend cut into the conversation. He explained that it was my truck. Not the taxpayers. She became rather embarrassed and hurried away.

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1 hour ago, 8E45E said:

Mine is usually, "I didn't know Studebaker made TRUCKS!"

 

Craig

 

I usually get the same comment for my '15 Buick truck.  I carry a poster of an advertisement from Buick showing that Buick made trucks from the factory.  The body was a $75.00 option.

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It seems it's usually inexperienced observers who say the comical things, but once it was the opposite for me. When I was getting tires on my Ford Mainline wagon 15 years ago, an old timer walked up to me and asked, "Is that your car?" I said yes, then he said, "I bought one brand new back in 1953. You know why I bought it?" I shook my head. He said, "It was the cheapest d@mn car that Ford made!"

 

At the other end of the spectrum was something that happened shortly after I bought that same car (a two door Ranch Wagon.) It was in proper driveable, but visually "barn find" condition. As I pulled out of my business'  parking lot and up to the stop light, two people in a car pulled up beside me. They rolled down their window and almost started screaming about how much they loved my car, and how much they loved old cars and how they had always wanted one just like mine (all of it laced with obscenities, for some strange reason.) Then one of them asked, quite sincerely, "That's a Nomad, right?" 😄

 

 

 

 

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I’ve probably mentioned this before, but one of my most memorable (comical ?) comments I’ve ever received while driving a vintage (or any) car was about 6 years ago in my Roadster when a lifelong friend from Europe was vacationing/visiting and sitting as passenger.

 

We were cruising/driving in afternoon traffic through Bel Air/Beverly Hills on Sunset (heading west, on left lane), when traffic slowed for a signal light.

 

We stopped right next to this  (if I recall correctly) maybe 15-20 year old Cadillac Coupe occupied by two “mature” ladies, both wearing relatively heavy makeup (think of two  Gloria Swansons in “Sunset Boulevard”, but noticeably older).
Mind you that we were in our early 50’s and my friend, who is actually an actor and a musician, looks similar to likes of G. Clooney, C. Grant or G. Peck.

 

While sitting there with the old Hemi idling through the straight dual exhaust, we noticed the driver of the Cadillac(?) rolling down her side window and slightly pushing her head out to better observe and perhaps hear the idle tone, while her passenger appeared to attempt same..

 

Then, after couple of seconds of observing & slowly gazing over the entire length of the Roadster and at the moment the traffic started to move, the driver lady, with a cigarette literally hanging at the side of her bright red mouth, smiled at us and with a raspiest/roughest “drinking & smoking” burnt(?) voice, yelled at us “REV IT UP, BABY !”

 

When we got over the initial awe and laughter, we both realized & wished the moment would’ve been captured on video.

 

 

Edited by TTR (see edit history)
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I had the Special parked in front of my building a few years ago while I ran upstairs to grab something.
 

When I came back out, an elderly woman was looking at it, and told me “My first and third husbands had these kind of Buicks!” 
 

As she was also looking at me with her “appraisers eye,” I thanked her for her comment, but didn’t linger. 

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I have a very good B&W photo of my 1910 REO with me sitting in it...one of those pictures that would be hard hard to date because there is nothing else in it obviously newer than the car. It hung in my office and one day, when my dad was in the office, one of my employees asked him if that was him when he was young. Since dad was born in 1916, and learned to drive in the mid 30s, he was insulted..he replied "How damn old do you think I am"?

 

Some time later a friend was in the office with his son, about 8 at the time. The boy looked at the picture, looked at me, looked back at the picture and then said "how old are you"? I replied "110".

 

My favorite story isn't actually comical. I was helping a friend unload a 1922 Silver Ghost on the street in front of his father's house where we were going to put it in the garage. Several men stopped and asked the usual questions..."Is that a Packard" or "Wow, a straight 12" (Ghosts have dual ignition so there are 12 spark plugs.) As we were finishing up an elderly Nun walked by and paused to look at the car. Oh she said..."an American Silver Ghost, and an early one." It would be an understatement to say we were shocked, which probably showed on our faces so she continued "My father worked for RR of America."

Edited by JV Puleo (see edit history)
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2 hours ago, JV Puleo said:

As we were finishing up an elderly Nun walked by and paused to look at the car. "Oh she said...an American Silver Ghost, and an early one." It would be an understatement to say we were shocked, which probably showed on our faces so she continued "My father worked for RR of America."

Shame you did not get her contact information.  I'm sure she would have had many interesting stories to share, considering the fact, she knew exactly what you were helping move.

 

Craig

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I've probably told this story before but...

 

One evening sometime in the 70s, my wife and I cruised our Model A pickup to the Dairy Queen.  We were sitting in the truck eating our cones when a young couple pulled in with their daughter who appeared to be about 4 or 5.  The little girl jumped out of the car, excitedly pointed to us and said, "Look Mom, it's the Waltons!"

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I had my '21 Chevy 490 pickup at a local cruise night .It was by far the oldest car there. When I started it up to leave,a large crowd gathered, fascinated by the open valves and pushrods. A tall slightly stooped dude with a long pony tail studied the engine for a moment and then stated " Wow, man. The original Chevy small block ! ' .

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We have a 1963 Mini with sort of a wild paint job...neat and clean always, but we understand it's not everyone's "cup of tea".  My license plate in TN was "NOT 2 BIG" since after all, it's a Mini. Setting at the red light on the way home from work one day, a huge Oldsmobile that was in really terrible shape with a bunch of rather drunk guys in it pulled up beside me, one leaned out and hollered "Not too purty neither", and they all were really laughing hard !  They took off, and I had a really good laugh over it too.

 

At a gas station one day in our 63 Avanti, a fellow pulled in beside me and said he had seen me around several times driving "that Jenson Healey" and had always hoped to catch me to say how much he liked it...

 

A funny one when we 1st got our Sunbeam Tiger happened one night... funny now, scare'y then.... when Karen was driving it for the 1st time. We were  on a small crooked side road coming back from the mall, WAY after dark, and she was really rowing thru' the gears and enjoying herself when the headlights suddenly went out. She sort of screamed out "what do I do now?" and never quit accelerating. I said, "well, for one thing you could let off the gas and slow down so it won't be as bad of a wreck as it's gona' be going this fast"...  Then suggested she mash the dimmer switch, which got them back on, and on we went !

 

Another Tiger "funny".  A pal in his Vette and I took off rather rapidly from a red light in Nashville on Murfressboro Road on our way home from work one day, and the Tiger was spinning and fish-tailing quite badly, with Bill and his Vette slowly fading. About the time I hit 2nd, looked over at a gas station to make sure no one was pulling out, I seen two police officers standing by their car, and they immediately jumped in and headed my way. It was two red lights before they caught me, ( without their blue lights or sirens on ) and when they pulled up beside me, I was waiting for "pull it over sir" as the one rolled down his window. Instead, he said, "what kind of car is that?".  I told him a Sunbeam Tiger made in England, and he said, " does it have a 327 or 350 Chevy engine in it?"....  I looked at him a minute, and said, "are you guys gona'  ticket me /"  He told me no, that they just wanted to see what on earth that little rocket ship was, ha !  I thanked them, but said, "you have scared me to death, and now you insult me by calling it Chevy powered, it's got a 306 horse Cobra engine in it now".... they laughed, holler'd out for me to be careful, and sped off.  OH, they didn't stop or pay attention to Bill in his Vette, and he was miffed, ha ha !!!

 

A couple of cute bike stories involve the guys at work always sneaking HUGE drip pans from the machine shop under my Cushman or Harley when I drove either of them to work.. those turkeys !

 

We always have something a little different to drive, and have some really great memories from folks with events like these that have always happened quite frequently to us.
 

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Years ago, back in the days of the Volkswagen commercials that alluded to the Volkswagen as “Farfegnugen” I was riding in my brothers 1929 Studebaker President at an Antique Studebaker meet in Southern California.   As we were driving into an antique rail museum, in a line of pre WWII Studebakers, we stopped our car to pay the admission fee at the gate.  The young lady at the gate asked what kind of cars we were driving.   My brother never missed a beat and said that all the cars were Farfegnugens and we were having a meeting and tour of the Farfegnugen club.  The young lady exclaimed in excitement that she had always wanted to see a Farfegnugen.  

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I had my 1921 Franklin 9B touring at a local show.  Some kid about 10 years old comes up with a friend and they start looking at the car.

 

"Wow, that car is really old," he said. "It must have been made in the 70s."

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More remarkable than funny.

Almost fifty years ago, I was just a couple years out of high school, and driving my first model T speedster all over town. One day, I went to the local real hardware store (remember those?) to get some things I needed. I had parked the T speedster in the parking lot, and when I came out a fellow was looking it over quite closely. I was already used to that and we struck up a conversation. He began asking where had I found it? Was it from the Fresno area? Did I know who had owned it before? All that usual stuff, yet somehow more intense than usual. Then he asked if I knew what kind of car the gasoline tank had come from? I told him that I did in fact know that it was from a 1916 Studebaker (a very good friend was restoring a 1915 Studebaker and had told me mine was from a 1916 model). He was somewhat impressed that I knew that, and assured me it was correct. Then he told me he had built a model T speedster back about 1920, and that his car had had a 1916 Studebaker gasoline tank on it. Then he took out his wallet, and showed me a picture he still carried of that earlier car he had had. It was almost a dead ringer for my car! The seats, the gasoline tank, the cowling and the rear tool box were all nearly identical! If I hadn't known it was impossible, I would have thought my car could have actually been his.

 

A bit more humorous, in that same timeframe when we could still talk with people that had owned those cars new (I really miss those days!).

One of my best friends (then and now) had a 1921 model T Ford touring car. He and I had stopped at an estate sale. Some fellow there walked up to the model T and started talking. "That there is a fine auto-MO-beel." "Thank you." "A Dodge, ain't it, yip, my diddy had a Dodge JUST like that one!" "No, its a model T Ford" "Cain't be, my diddy had a Dodge EXACTly like that one!" "No, This is a model T Ford" "No seree, my DIDDY's Dodge was EXactly LIKE this one! Except hisn had them steel (disc) wheels on it" "Well, a lot of Dodge cars had those steel wheels in those days." "Yeseree, someone done changed the wheels on your car. All them Dodges had them steel wheels onem in those days!" "Yes, a lot of the Dodge cars had the steel wheels on them, they were a popular option then for Dodge." (As we walked off into the estate sale, we heard him again) "Yep, My diddy had a Dodge exACTly like thisn, only hisn had the right wheels onit."

Edited by wayne sheldon
I hate leaving typos! (see edit history)
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24 minutes ago, wayne sheldon said:

 "No, This is a model T Ford" 

 

On a similar vane,my wife and stopped in the local grocery store on our way back from a show with the '21 Chevy. While waiting with the car, an elderly gent walked over and complimented me on the car. His praise turned to indignation though when he looked down at the floor. "You've changed it ! " he said. "it's supposed to have three paddles "!  I told him to go around front and read the rad emblem . " Chev-ro-let . Well I'll be danged ! "

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11 minutes ago, padgett said:

If your foot goes into the trash can the whole bike is suddenly on top of you and are not in a position to move 600 lbs.

 

Voice of experience?  😉

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parked my 1928 Graham Paige sedan at a car show, had the front and back doors open to show the interior.  a couple on their 80s wander over and have a look, I just so happened to be heading into the car to get something, and watched her nudge his side with her elbow, while looking at the back seat, and then say to him, "Remember that".  

 

I had to turn and walk away.  There was no way I was going to keep a straight face. 

 

My mother was also asked if she brought it new (its 10 years older than her)  She wasn't happy, we all laughed though :)

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2 hours ago, wayne sheldon said:

... in that same time frame when we could still talk with people that had owned those cars new (I really miss those days!).

 

I miss them too. When I was in my late 20s there was an old gent named Asa Briggs who was a regular at the local shows. He had an early 20s Cadillac but most often we would see him in a 1919 Model T with Rhode Island License plate "1919". He had graduated from Brown University that year and the car was a graduation present from his father.

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Padgett, glad you told that Harley story, it reminded me of one of my worse embarrassed moments.  I had bought a 750 Honda chopper that really needed a lot of cosmetic work, and it took me several weeks to get it all apart, painted, (my 1st custom paint job) and re-assembled. I was working at Browns Ferry Nuclear plant in Athens Alabama  at the time, and there were a lot of us making decent money back then spending it on cars and bikes. I was the only one that fixed up a Honda chopper at the time, and several of my pals had stopped by the house to see my progress. I was on 2nd shift at the time, so I told them I would be bringing it in on it's "maiden voyage" one nice sunny afternoon, to be sure and come out and check it out before I went on down to the assigned parking lot. Well, sure enough, there were several of them ready for me when I got there.... nervous as a cat, I'll admit, since I'm a little guy and it was a really heavy awkward ride...  Anyway, I came rumbling up to a good flat place, shut it off, and got off as gracefully as a little short guy can, turned around and made two steps before they all were hollering and it hit the ground.  Stupid motorcycles, who knew they would fall over with the kick-stand still folded neatly up !  And yes, I even had a new, longer, chrome one since the front forks were 6 inches longer and it was REAL wobbly on the stock stand and its required piece of wood... Oh well, it made several other folks happy for a few minutes, and they even helped me lift it back up, ha !

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Only real noted comical reaction I ever received toward a car was by a crowd watching a sneaky sex-tographer taking pictures of a latin, long haired beauty wearing nothing but a very short black bazer,spead leged in high heals ,bent over the spare tire of my '23 Star touring  in a Walmart parking lot,one Saturday summer afternoon.

The photographer and model went to take off when I finally caught up to the car and toss my bags in front seat as if nothing unsual was happing..

 I stoped them and offered to have her straddle the hood! LOL. Didn't happen..but they took shots of her looking at the motor , looking over her shoulder at the camera with her bum AND ,right out there and a few other provocative shots on the running board and getting in, Behind (wink)the wheel.

All for some "Heals and Wheels "adult web site ,calender or something? 

Very quickly took my info to send me proofs and ran off to a far parked car...I never got the proofs ,dang it, or was able to track down the site.

 

The on lookers were giggles( some taking their own pics..

I was asked by a watcher if I was in on it? 

I replied.."of course...they were my son and daughter-in-law." Ha!

 

 

 

 

 

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A few years ago a young guy, probably still in his teens, walked up to me and my '79 Monte Carlo and asked "Is it real?". I had no idea how to answer that, so I said "no, but it's a pretty good fake, huh?" He walked away, nodding, like I confirmed his suspicions. 

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Years ago I had my 1966 Wagonaire at an all makes show, and a Chevy lover had a fit seeing my car. He thought I had done a great job customizing a Nova station wagon. When I pointed out that it was a bone stock Studebaker, he calmed down.... Then he saw the 283 motor, and it started all over again.

 

At a gas station it would attract old men (What is it?). At the grocery store it would attract old women (Love your car!). At a car show, the kids wanted to climb the little step-ladder and stand for pictures in the cargo area (with the roof open). Driving that car was never boring, you were usually going to have an adventure or at least a good time.

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After reading some replies by others, I realized only authenticity question I can recall hearing about my PB Roadster, on more than few occasions, has been people asking if its license plate is a real one.

Edited by TTR (see edit history)
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17 hours ago, oldcarfudd said:

In 1971 I was driving a 1910 E-M-F in Houston.  I was 35.  A convertible pulled up next to me at a light.  The driver was as cute as can be, short shorts, long legs, cut-down halter, the whole nine yards.  She looked up at me, blinked her gorgeous eyes, gave me a wide smile (and I melted) and said:  "That is a dahlin' cah! Did yew buy it new?"

 

Who would have thought a 1910 E-M-F would be a "babe magnet"? If I only knew.......  Great story by the way

Edited by John348 (see edit history)
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Back around '08 I bought a Mark VII Jaguar in Federal Way, Washington and had it open trailered to Western New York. It passed through two transporters and ended up with a guy pulling tandem car trailers which were mot allowed on the NYS Thruway. He had already lost an engine on the trip. In his new truck he was running on secondary roads for about 150 miles. I got a call from him at an intersection 35 miles away. I told him to stay on the same road and I would meet him at an intersection with a large parking lot. Then he could follow me home. I could tell he was having a harrowing experience and in way deeper than planned.

We met about 1 AM under the parking lot lights, He was about 60 and wearing a white t-shirt with MOPAR across the front. Getting a breather he talked about the trip. It was tough. Being the big sedan had little badging, he told me so many people asked what it was and he asked what they thought it was. He said most thought it was a Bentley. After a pause he tilted his head a little and asked "What's a Bentley?" My eyes immediately went to his t-shirt. I wondered "Did you win that?".

 

As delivered:

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