28th June 1999
Subject: What you'd do with $150,000.
Any time you're in the neighborhood I'd be happy to whip up some martinis.However, when you said that if you had $150,000 to spend you'd buy two 928S4s plus a condo somewhere around here, you left off just one tiny thing you'd need to do that. One more zero. And then of course, the annual property taxes and maintenance which would take another 150k per year.
Martinis of course are free.
3rd July 1999
Subject: Personal attacks
I've been meaning to speak to you about your 375 pound, axe-murdering mother, your room temperature I.O., and your size 2EEEE Nikes. But seeing as you have already broached the subject, I've decided not to say anything. Have a nice 4th.
3rd July 1999
Subject: New radiators.
Re: your overheating problems. Two summers ago my 87S4 started running hot, and here in South Florida, hot, means HOT!
Having replaced a radiator in another 928, I was only too aware of the outrageous price Porsche charges for an OEM replacement.
My mechanic removed the radiator from the car and took it someplace in Ft. Lauderdale where they rodded it out and charged $60.00. He replaced it with a new thermostat and a couple of new hoses. Total bill to me was, as I recall, about $175.00 for all parts, labor, and the rodding out charges.
Since then I have put about ten thousand miles on the car and even on the hottest days here, temps close to 100 degrees in stop and go freeway traffic with the AC on high, my heat gauge has never risen above normal. Before you spend all that loot on a new replacement, check it out, unless there is physical damage to the radiator.
3rd July 1999
Your message about beer in Savannah has left me sadder Budweiser.
3rd July 1999
Subject: 928s as daily drivers
Although I have other cars, I drive my 928 most of the time. I've made three round trips from South Florida to Santa Cruz CA in two of them. Three days each way. The only problem I've ever had was a flat tire because I ran over some junk that fell out of a truck in front of me. Eleven or twelve hundred mile days don't leave me with a sore butt or broken back like a whole lot of other cars would, including Ferraris, Lamborghinis, Jag E-types, and other so called exotics.
I don't get under them with a toothbrush, and sometimes I go longer between wax jobs than I should, but I make damned sure that the mechanical stuff is in as good a shape as anyone can expect of a 12 year old car with 101,000 miles on it. It doesn't do me any good looking all shiny and beautiful broken down alongside the highway in South Overshoe, Montana. As far as I'm concerned they (all eight of them since 77) are as good a daily driver as anything if they're well cared for. Why deprive yourself of the pleasure of driving them if you're worried about taking them out of sight of your mechanic. If they break they break. I've seen a lot more RRs and Bentleys on the backs of flatbeds here in Florida than all the different models of Porsches combined.
87S4 5 speed. Old, but still goes like a bee stung cheetah.
3rd July 1999
Subject: Supperchargers, lunchchargers
I couldn't agree with you more. Breakfastchargers and snackchargers are good also, unless someone leaves the cork out of your lunch and it spills on your Birkenstocks.
3rd July 1999
Subject: Costs of, and gripes at 928 shortcomings.
Regarding all the messages as to how dependable or undependable 928s are. I think there are several things that elicit many of the remarks posted recently. To begin with, these are complex, high performance cars. They're also except for the last few GTS years, OLD cars. They were absolute state of the art when they were designed twenty four or five years ago, but that was then and this is now. The computers in the early 928s such as the LH unit I replaced in my 87S4 a few months for $1200. could probably be designed much better and more dependable now for under $100.00.
Many people who buy these cars are young, have an extremely limited budget, see this beautiful super car they can buy for less than the price of a new Accord or Camry and buy them, not realizing that they are high maintenance vehicles. The first time something goes wrong with the car that costs over a thousand dollars, (and there are many things that do) they freak out because their annual living budget has been mauled. The way they feel is perfectly understandable, but certainly not practical.
You can't keep a thoroughbred racehorse for anywhere near the annual expense of a bridal trail nag or workhorse. You can't run off to St. Bart's with Julia Roberts when all you can afford to do is take Alice Hammenschlager to Disneyworld. If you are a good mechanic and can do much of the work yourself, you can save some of the expense, but you still have to buy parts, and these are complicated machines to work on properly.
I have a two inch thick folder on most of the money I've spent on my 87S4. Several other folders almost as thick on the other seven 928s I've owned since 77. I haven't the slightest desire to go through all of that and total up the money I have spent on this particular car in the past ten years. Until it's 60k major tuneup the expenses were not any more, or possibly even less, than one of the better American or Japanese cars. Since then, approximately five years ago, I have probably spent more keeping the machine in good shape mechanically than many of you have paid for your 78s to 86s to begin with.
I don't regret it for a moment, and would, after putting about 300,000 miles on 928s, do it over again in a New York second.. There's no free lunch kiddies. Whether it's cars, boats, planes, houses in Hawaii or the Carribean, etc. etc. If you want the best, you pay for it. If you can't afford it, buy a Honda, work hard and smart, and before you know it you can get the good stuff. I want all of you to write this down because we're going to have a quiz in the morning.
Lastly on a different subject. Flaming: I'm not into it, but if I'm flamed egregiously enough, I respond in kind. If you can't take it, you shouldn't dish it out. Also, a pet peeve is the people on this list and others who are ignorant enough and insensitive enough to think that they have the right to dictate what other list members say, or think, and tell those they disagree with to get off the list and disappear. These people are either brain dead or ignorant beyond belief. This is close minded Bosnia-Herzegovia, Kosovo, Libya, Iraq, Iran, Afghanistan, Syria, bullgravy. Further, if you want to restrict this to a strict nuts and bolts forum, you should start a new list from Motor Trend, Cab & Driver, or Mechanics Illustrated.
87S4 that I can't sell because I've happily spent far more on it than it's present market value. Eventually I may have it bronzed and mount it on a big walnut plaque over the fireplace.
4th July 1999
Subject: 928s as daily drivers
Glad you feel the same way. I'm getting ready to drive my old turkey up to New England in a couple of weeks and intend to put about 4 thousand miles on it in three weeks. It's at my mechanics right now being checked over. I don't anticipate any problems, and if I have any, I have an AAA preferred membership that will tow me 150 miles for free. If the damage is really bad, I'll just euthanize it with a couple of well aimed 357 magnum slugs.
Have a nice holiday.
4th July 1999
Subject: John Dunkel's lurking
If you're involved with a bunch of lists as you say, and also as you say, you spend a good deal of time lurking on this one, you are either the number one alumnus of Evelyn Woods Speed Reading Courses or you not lurking, your SKULKING! At the very least, your lurking with INTENT to skulk Skulking, being by definition, simply high speed lurking.
I believe that in Califlakia where I lived for many years, that constitutes at least a second class felony. Better watch out. If you see a cop on a Harley with sequined sun glasses and Gucci motorcycle boots behind you, pull over, lie, and tell him/her/or it, that you're really from Connecticut, Massachusetts, or some other part of the civilized world where lurking is still a misdemeanor, and almost everyone can read fast.
4th July 1999
Subject: Re: reliability
Wrong Alice Hammenschlager, I always took mine behind the local K Mart where there was a big empty dumpster we could use instead of spending $18.00 at Motel 6.
> Jeeez, Geno: I TRIED to take Alice Hammenschlager to go to Disney World, but all she wanted to do was park out in >the back of the Rite Aid after was closed. She kept muttering something about what fun she had with Gene there.....
> Now I know what she meant.
4th July 1999
I will be easier if I just give you my mechanics number because I can't recall all the details. I do remember though that they pressure tested the radiator both before and after they rodded it out and there was a big improvement after they had removed all the calcium deposits, barnacles, and other junk.
Call Igor Wasilewski in Pompano Beach. His company is "National Auto Projects" and the tel. is: 954-784-3754. My car is there now having a few minor things done before I drive up north in a few weeks. Kevin Jones just picked up his car there this morning. Thinks he might have to get a new LH unit or whatever they called them on the 84s. But in the meantime Igor got it running again.
Hope you have a nice holiday.
5th July 1999
Subject: California's new midwestern location
Now I'm really bummed out. All those years I lived in Aptos and Malibu I never realized that I was sailing and windsurfing in a damned puddle. The shame of it all! Maybe the next big convulsion of the San Andreas fault will put the state closer to the real ocean.
15th July 1999
Subject: Radar detectors
Regarding Don Hanson's comments on the constitutionality of radar detectors, I couldn't agree with him more. I think it will take a massive protest from drivers in those states that ban them before they will stop their enforcement of a law that is patently illegal. The internet would be a perfect medium to launch a petition to be sent to the Governors, Senators, State Representatives, Departments of Motor Vehicles, etc. demanding, not pleading, that the law be rescinded. Vincent Soo's comments cracked me up.
Not paying a ticket and getting a letter from the Virginia DMV telling him he was no longer welcome in that state. That sounds almost as serious as being drummed out of the Book of the Month Club. Imagine the mentality of the dork who thought that one up. I guess it can be attributed to modern dynamic bureaucracy in action.
Although I have a good RD I usually keep it in the driver's door pocket and rarely use it unless I'm in well known heavily speed trapped areas, which means much of the state. Also we have more state troopers per mile of interstate highway than any other state. Something like one for every mile and a third. Wyoming is number 50 with one for each 250 miles! Here they park five and six together like wolf packs in the median strip of I-95. When you pass one of these groups you have a tendency to think that it's okay to speed up because all the troopers in the area are there. Five miles down the road you come across another group just like the last one. It reminds me of the endless stuff on the tube about African wild life where you see groups of lions watching huge herds of wildebeests passing by and every now and then a couple of lionesses take off and nail one. Thats' probably where they got the idea.
Florida, being flat as a pancake, enables the blue knights to pick you up sooner than they could in hilly terrain. It was giving me a false sense of security, and I usually collected two or three tickets per year. A few of them were made worse by the trooper noticing the RD. Also, they don't help much if a plane or chopper clocks you between two known points as they commonly do here. I finally got the mother of all speeding tickets while racing a guy in a Corvette on a basically empty highway. We were both nailed by sheriffs driving a radar equipped unmarked car. At that time, the 55 mph limit was still in effect. The Vette had been tailgating me for miles at about 75mph. I moved into the right lane and waved him by but he came right over and continued tailgating me. Dumb, but I finally allowed him to goad me into it and took off. I went up to about 110 or 120 and held it there. He passed me and gave me the universal single finger salute of brotherly love. While he was tailgating me I had noticed a little blue Pontiac behind us but paid no attention to it.
When he shot me the bird, I felt that he badly needed a lesson in humility, so I let him get several hundred yards ahead, downshifted to fourth and nailed it. He saw me coming and did the same. I caught him about a mile down the highway and blew by him quite briskly. As soon as I got the satisfaction of seeing the look of shock and horror on his face, I started coasting down. He passed me again and gave me the second iteration of the previous salute. Just about then I saw the blue light far behind. By the time the little blue Pontiac came up behind me I had coasted down to about eighty. The Vette also saw them and started doing the same thing. They motioned for me to follow and they then did the same to him. Two young guys in jeans and T shirts, also large shiny badges and guns. They collected both our licenses and got on the radio. In about ten minutes I saw the Vette driver signing his ticket and as he passed me on the grass shoulder he stopped for a moment along side me and told me that they had written him up for 100 mph OVER the speed limit and that with his driving record could expect at least ten days in jail. His ticket was for almost $600.00! He took off. Not a happy camper.
I laughed, but it was gallows humor. I expected the electric chair or at the very least, the chain gang, which this very progressive state reinstituted several years ago. One of the cops came back, looked at me and said: "Man, you really blew him into the weeds!" I didn't say boo. He continued: "Do you know that you outran our radar! When you passed the other guy he was doing over 150! You must have been doing at least 180!" I assured him that the only way my shark could go 180 was if it fell out of a C-130. Fortunately he had a sense of humor. He laughed and said: "Okay, we saw that clown tailgating you for miles. We were just getting ready to stop him when you took off as we knew you would. If it had been me, I would have also. We don't blame you for what you did, but you didn't have to do it in such dramatic fashion! I've been a cop for six years and I've never seen a car go that fast on a public highway before. Because of the circumstances we're going to give you a big break and only write you up for 50 mph over the limit. The other guy is going to see some jail time. My advice to you is pay the ticket right away and sign up for driver's school, that will keep the points off your license and you won't have to worry about losing it."
Thats' exactly what I did. Paid the fine the next morning. Can't remember the amount, but do remember that it was considerably more than I paid for my first two cars. Sat through driver's school for the second time. Stayed off death row, and was forced to alter my lifelong driving style by speeding only when I really knew it was cool. That was in 92 or 93. Stashed the RD and have been ticketed only once since then in Texas by a trooper who lasered me at 75 in a 65 zone when we were the only two cars in sight from horizon to horizon. Gave me a long windy lecture punctuated with lots of snide references to"smartass yankees who drive fancy German cahs" etc. The ticket was for $85.00, cheap by Florida or Hawaii standards. But I did the same thing with it that Vincent did in Virginia. That was five years ago but I still avoid route 10 between Flatonia and Fort Stockton whenever I find myself in that part of the country.
Longwinded way of saying after using RDs for many years I still drive with brio but am more careful about the venue that I do it in, especially when I pass through Virginia which I usually do a couple of times each year. This is not meant as a put-down on RDs by any means. They saved my tail a lot of times, but I still relied too heavily on them and got enough tickets to ruin some of the joy of driving not only 928s but all the sports cars I've owned over the years. Quite probably many of you can resist the temptation to get a little too heavy footed. I have trouble even now, but know if my RD was working I'd up my speed accordingly. A further benefit. My insurance ratesare less than half what they used to be.
87S4 5 sp
16th July 1999
Subject: Lone or lead dog
You said it for both of us. I might drive faster than the average driver but I've managed to drive somewhere in the vicinity of one and a quarter to one and a half million accident free miles. Obviously some of it was luck because the best driver in the world can be sitting at a traffic light waiting for it to change and have some clown smash into the back of his car. However, one of the reasons I've managed to avoid shunts is that fact that I like to stay away from herds of cars whenever it's possible.
If I can't get out in front of a clump of them, I'll fall back a safe distance until I see an opening large enough to get through the bunch. Once I do, I'll move out of the left lane in case Dale Earnhardt is behind me. This is particularly true if I'm on a bike.
Most drivers don't even see motorcycles, and even if they do, many of them think that they can occupy the space you're in simply by moving into it. I can't think of any state that tries to teach drivers that motorcycles have as much right to occupy a space on the highway as they do, and further, that a rider has approximately 30 times the chance of being killed in a highway speed collision as the driver of the car that hits him or her.
87 S4 5sp
16th July 1999
Subject: Old motorcycle riders
I started riding "Whizzer" bikes when I was fourteen, then got an Indian Warrior a British 500cc vertical twin that Indian brought into this country and sold under their name. First raced on quarter mile dirt tracks in northern Florida when I was an eighteen year old college freshman. That machine was a BSA 500cc single cylinder, hard tailed "Gold Star". Hate to admit it but that was in 1949. Thats odd, it doesn't seem like fifty years ago! More like only 48 or 49. Won the 7th race I was in. Knew immediately that I was the greatest flat track rider in the world. Shortly thereafter, spent six weeks in the St. Augustine hospital after I found out that wasn't quite true. Wasn't my fault either. I didn't get hurt when I got off, it was those other six or seven lousy riders who ran over me.
16th July 1999
Subject: Radar detectors.
I deeply resemble the snide remarks you made about my unfamiliarity with innocense. Accordingly, I withdraw my offer to take you to the prom.
Please return the corsage immediately.
Also, Brian, I'll accept the job but I'm warning you, I get a full five dollars an hour, net net.
16th July 1999
Subject: Re: Old motorcycle riders
That was pretty much the case for about a year. The broken bones healed in a couple of months, but the deep bone bruises and torn ligaments etc. had me hobbling around for a long time. Before I could walk I'd get my younger brothers to help me get on my bike to tear around. There was no speed limit on the beach then (hardly any houses between St. Augustine Beach and Ormond Beach just north of Daytona. and you could drive wide open from St. Augustine to Daytona. Just had to get off the beach one time at the Matanzas inlet. The only danger was from turtles at night and Seminole attacks. No helmets on the street then. I was okay if I didn't have to get off because I had enough strength in my legs to balance the bike at a traffic signal or stop sign but not enough to walk. The wonderful resiliency and stupidity of youth!
22nd July 1999
Subject: dash mounted CD players
Re: dash mounted CD players. You mentioned that some techie told you that the angle the unit was mounted in the dash could possibly interfere with smooth reception. FWIW, I had a top of the line Alpine unit installed about three years ago.
The CD player works perfectly. Never skips or operates other than as it should.
22nd July 1999
Subject: Mocha 928s - aka Dungrockets
When I first moved back to the mainland from Hawaii in 88, I was driving a rental car and needed to buy something in a hurry. Saw an ad for an 83 Auto equipped, one owner, 18k miles. Bought it. It was the Dungrocket color. Uglier than 40 miles of bad road. Also I don't care for any Porsches with Auto. Just my preference. However, the upside was the fact that the color converted the car into a "Stealth Rocket" I think that dull color is invisible to cops. Only kept it for less than a year before I bought an 87S4, but put about 20 thousand high speed miles on it and never got stopped here in speedticketsville. So it was ugly. It still kicked butt, and I never had to spend a dime on it.
87S4 5 sp
22nd July 1999
Subject: travels in Europe
When you said "Take NJ for instance" it reminded me of a NYC television program that opened showing a pretty girl standing on one of the piers on the Hudson River with NJ in the background, singing the show's theme song, "New Jersey Sucks" anyone else remember that? It was in the 80s, and echoed the sentiments of many New Yorkers.
Re: driving in Europe and seeing the Lotus Elise: I spent much of last summer in Ireland and kept seeing these really neat little roadsters. Hadn't the vaguest idea what they were till a cabbie in Dublin told me they we MGs! Apparently they've been around Europe for at least a couple of years. I've never seen anything about them in the various trades.
Another thing about driving in "The auld sod" I put over a thousand miles on a little Ford Escort, pretty much covering the country, and in all those miles, blessedly, I saw a couple of Land Rovers, one Jeep Cherokee, and not another damned SUV. Also, not a single pickup truck. The vans I saw were all commercial vehicles. For one thing none of those monstrosities fit on most of the Irish roads. Also, at about $4.70 cents a gallon, it would cost about $100.00 to fill up a Ford Excrescence. Imagine, an entire country that gets along just fine without any of the above. It was just so enjoyable to drive without my vision constantly being blocked by one. It warmed the cockles of my heart, whatever they are.
Lastly, in all the time I was there I saw one 944 which blew by me on a typical 12 ft. wide road north of Galway, and a few weeks later, a couple of 911s in Dublin. Not a single 928. Also no large American sedans. Lots of Mercedes and Jaguars. What really surprised me was the amount of French cars. Peugeots, Citroens, Renaults, etc. They may not sell in this country but they do a hell of a job in Ireland.
87S4 5 sp languishing in the farthest dark corner of my mechanic's garage while he searches for a new AC evaporator.
23rd July 1999
Subject: your message in today's list
Being left handed and slightly dyslexic, your message was the clearest thing I've read in years!
25th July 1999
Subject: 84 928 for sale.
Sunday morning July 25.
I've just come from driving an 84 928 for sale in South Palm Beach. It has sixty two or three thousand original miles on it and runs perfectly. New tires, brakes good, engine sounds strong, Under the hood is clean and looks like a much newer car. Brown leather upholstery in good condition. White. there are a few very minor blemishes in the paint. At the leading edge of the sun roof the is a chip approximately 1 1/2 inches long by 3/16ths wide. Another about the same size on the bottom lip of of the passenger's side rear quarter window. The fron air dam is broken and needs to be replaced. When the present owner bought it about six weeks ago, the shift handle was missing. He paid $250.00 to Porsche for a new leather one but the plate that surrounds it is missing. The radio plays well but is mounted slightly askew in the dash. The windows and seats all work perfectly. The old dude that owns it has several other cars and is apparently getting ready to go north for a few months and wants to get rid of it. He said that he was offered $5400.00 yesterday and turned the guy down. He has spent a couple of thousand on it for tires, hoses, and other small items. Bought it from a dealer and doesn't know what has been done to it in the past other than the fact that the title says "Original Miles" on it. From the looks of the engine compartment I'd guess that it's correct. It looks a hell of a lot newer and cleaner under the hood than my 87 does. The owner's name is Jerry Shapiro. His phone number is: 561-588-8861. He lives at 3525 South Ocean Drive in South Palm Beach, FL apt. 103. He says that has will sell it for $5950.00 but not a penny less, as he already has considerably more than that in it. Anyone interested can call him directly and just mention that you got it off the internet. He seems like a reasonable guy, and I believe the car is a good deal at that price. A few hundred dollars would replace the air dam, touch up the two paint chips etc. The mileage is extremely low for an 84 and appears to be correct.
27th July 1999
Subject: 928 mechanic in North Miami Area
National Auto Projects, run by Igor Wasilewski in Pompano Beach is the best one I've found in that general area. They are at 1224 South Dixie Highway E. about a mile north of Cypress Creek exit off I-95. Roughly half an hour north of N. Miami.
Phone: 954-784-3754 Their work is good and so are their prices.
87S4 5 sp
29th July 1999
Subject: Deer me
How do they get the deer to cross at that yellow sign?
29th July 1999
Subject: Gas stations
Why do they lock gas station bathrooms? Are they afraid someone will clean them?
30th July 1999
The main reason Santa is so jolly is because he knows where all the bad girls live. Also where he can buy indestructible timing belts and water pumps for a buck and a half. (Little Porsche content there) The last time I saw my S4 it was in all four corners of my mechanics shop but he says it will be ready tomorrow evening. Yeah Right! Before they invented drawing boards, what did they go back to?
30th July 1999
One tequila, two tequila, three tequila, floor.
2nd August 1999
Subject: Your snide remarks
Vince and Carole Soo are nice people, so I just gave them the good stuff. I'm saving the Zerex for you, if they ever allow you to cross the state line into Geriatricsville.
4th August 1999
Subject: Church Business
Obviously you have been paying Konecny and Buxton to spy on me and for that reason I'm elevating you to the rank of Archbishop of The Church of Zen Paganism for all the wonderful and lucrative publicity it has received as a result of your message, and the two weirdos seen skulking around this island in a rusty old Ford Grenada, The local police wanted to apprehend them for polluting the islands pristine air but I suggested that they just wait till the car was back on the mainland looking for the nearest Motel 6, and then open the bridges while they were having dinner at Wendy's.
Accordingly, to make your promotion official I'm bestowing upon your somewhat pointed head, the latin phrase used for the occasion: "De stella Martis vere venisti."
Also to the two aforementioned miscreants, skulkers, and would be child molesters, the appropriate latin admonishment: "Futue te ipsum et caballum tuum", & "Stercorem pro cerebro habes". and lastly: "Caput tuum in ano est."
No thanks are required, I was happy to do it.
21st August 1999
Subject: Fuel gauges
FWIW, I've been driving 928s as long as they've made them. Am on my ninth personal one and have also bought and sold a couple of dozen others. If I ever had one with an accurate fuel gauge, I can't remember. Best thing to do is drive till the low fuel light comes on and then fill it up within 5 - 35 miles and calculate your mileage. After a short while you'll know quite accurately what mileage you can get according to your driving style and ratio of highway to stop & go driving. Just reset the trip meter each time you fill it up and ignore the damned gauge. I haven't run out of gas since I sold my Maxwell. As Ed Ruiz would say: YMMV.
A few years ago I filled up in Palm Beach and headed for Charleston SC, a distance on about 540 miles. At the time my 87S4 was in a reasonably good state of tune. I got out on I-95 and set my cruise control at 78 mph. Traffic was relatively light . I never stopped, and the only time I had to get off the cruise control was when I was passing through the Jacksonville area for about 30 minutes. My low fuel light came on when I was still about 75 miles from Charleston. Just for the hell of it I decided to see how far I could drive before I ran out. Approximately fifty miles later I turned chicken and stopped at a station on the outskirts of the city. I had driven about 515 miles at the speed mentioned above. The tank took 21 1/2 gallons. I had averaged just a hair under 24 mpg at a steady 78 mph.
I don't know how much the system would actually have in it when the engine stopped, but imagine I could have gone at least another ten or fifteen miles, but had stretched my luck long enough to get a fairly accurate idea of the fuel remaining after the warning light came on. If this particular car is typical, you should get at least that many miles at normal highway speeds after the low fuel light comes on. Almost seven hours to the minute from PB to Charleston. Not bad for a 3500 pound 316 hp machine at a steady 78mph. The car is now 12 years old, has almost 102k on it and still averages about 18mpg in all round city/country driving at speeds just a hair below arrest level.
22nd August 1999
Subject: HP vs Torque etc. ad nauseum
Having been out of town for several days, I just got through plowing through five days of the list, most of the content seemingly concerned with various theories regarding torque versus horsepower. It all amounts to a powerful reminder of my reasons for walking away from the engineering profession years ago and becoming an agent for actors, models, artists, film makers, photographers, stand-up comics, and other maniacs, The endless minutiae gave me the first serious headache I've had since Apollo eleven lifted off a launch pad I helped to design. I never thought the sucker would get off the ground, and told Werner that to his face after a four martini lunch in Cocoa Beach.
No offense intended to any of you engineers and physicists, but wouldn't your time be better spent just driving your sharks by the seat of your pants and feeling that great surge of power when you down shift to third at 70 and blow by some clown hogging the left hand lane in his Lincoln Megamammoth? Who cares whether it's torque, horsepower, or giant rubber bands unwinding, as long as the gut and aforementioned derriere shoot signals up your spine and cause all the "fun synapses" to fire simultaneously?
As Konecny says: "Lets get back to bashing O'Rourke". Easy for him to say. Living in Utah, he's the only one on the list that had to buy a DC-3 to stuff all his wives and children in to attack me and Florida. He'll be surprised when he gets here and discovers that I've made a pact with the Seminoles, who, never having signed a treaty with the United States, are an independent nation, and have been buying SAM-3s from the Iraqis with money they make daily from their new gambling casinos.
August 24th 1999
Subject: Name dropping
I meant Werner Birnbaum, the manager of the Apollo theater in Harlem.
25th August 1999
Subject: Windshield damage - sh*t luck
Thats what you get for driving one of those seven foot tall turkeys. If you'd been driving your shark like the good lord meant you to do, the rock would have passed two feet over your roof.
Along those same lines, I was driving in light rain along Rte.70 in the mid Florida boonies the other day. Came up behind a semi doing about 80 mph. A rock that looked about the size of a golf ball sailed up and smashed into my windshield with a helluva crack. Sounded like it was broken for sure. Stopped, got out and looked at it, NO damage! Later when I stopped again for gas I saw that the wiper on the driver's side was completely mangled. It literally fell off in my hand when I touched it..
$12.00 for a replacement, and I was on my way. Obviously the same good lord's way of rewarding me for the exemplary lifestyle I've always striven for, while punishing you for all the times you've flamed me in the past few years. Bless you my son.
26th August 1999
We're all God's creatures. Ogden Nash once wrote: "God in his wisdom made he fly, and then forgot to tell us why".
Have a nice vacation and try to avoid those flying boulders.
26th August 1999
Subject: Re: Inanities
Can you believe it? This evening I opened the new issue of Automobile that came in today's mail and was is a new column entitled "Torque of the Town"! I hate it when someone steals my ideas before I've even had them! Back to the drawing board. Along those lines, I wonder what they went back to before they HAD drawing boards?
26th August 1999
I'm thinking of starting a column called "Torque of the Town". It would seem that there would be absolutely no shortage of avid, even rabid, contributors. There'll be no fees of course other than a booklet describing the difference between torque and horsepower done up nicely in heavy parchment with Emu leather covers that I'll call upon mssrs. Adamson and MacIntyre to provide from Emuville. Said booklets will be designed to fit nicely in the driver's side door pocket and reading them will provide some solace right after the driver gets his ass kicked in a drag race with one of those ugly vipers.
27th August 1999
Subject: Re: Re: Inanities
It's easy to understand why so many people have tried to do you in with all manner of weaponry. The very fact that you survived must prove that your bone structure and skull thickness prove you are the last of the true Neanderthals. Also the fact that you were mistaken for me is quite probably the biggest compliment you've ever received. I say that of course in all humility.
27th August 1998
Subject: Torque vs. Horsepower
Seeing as some blackguard read my thoughts and beat me to "Torque of the Town", and the seemingly endless subject of torque vs. horsepower has elicited such a torrent of opinions, and thousands of words, maybe it would be better to call it "Hoarsepower".
28th August 1999
Having owned a whole gang of airplanes since I learned to fly in 1944, I've decided that it's a lot cheaper, safer, and much more fun to fly without the damned things, even if its upstairs in a 747 or three hours on a Concorde I especially avoid flying anywhere in the general vicinity of Utah for fear of being rammed by Konecny in his Curtis pusher.
28th August 1999
Subject: My address
You can't miss it. Go through east through West Palm Beach, over the Okeechobee bridge and continue for exactly 37.4 miles and you'll be in my driveway.
28th August 1999
Subject: Palm Beach island being invaded by the unwashed masses
We'll make an exception on your part seeing as you already live right up the beach. But you still have to have the kelly green pants with the little gold dolphins on them.
28th August 1999
Subject: Re: Re: Inanities
Just let me know when you plan to arrive. I think busses would be more ractical than SUVs. That way we can use one of the big department store parking lots on a Sunday when they aren't using it and I can have Arby's, Colonel Sanders KFC, Wendy's, Burger King, and of course McDonald's, set up tents so there'll be an abundance of the good food the group has become accustomed to seeing as most of them have to spend all their spare cash keeping their sharks running. If you help me set it up I'll kick back one percent of the action to you, which may buy a new tire for the tail wheel on your DC-3. Please! no groveling in gratitude or other disgusting displays of emotion. I'll be happy to do it.
28th August 1999
Subject: Re: Flying
You're extremely observant. The night we had dinner there I didn't even realize that you had spotted the cleverly concealed arresting cables faired so smoothly into the floor around the bar.
28th August 1999
Subject: Re: SUVs in Palm Beach
You know, you might get away with that. But our security guards make much more than than you say. Some of them get as much as three dollars an hour, and don't dare to complain because they all arrived here one hundred and fifty at a time through the surf in 22 foot boats from points south, and spend much of their time hiding from the immigration service, little realizing that their massuhs are just as liable for prison terms as they are. They also get table scraps, and wonderful opportunities to kiss their master's signet rings (amongst other things) while genuflecting before them. This goes a long way toward keeping them happy and carefree while singing "Dixie", Swanee Ribber, and "Ole Man Ribber" for the gentility gathered on the veranda sipping mint juleps in the evening and doing copious lines of highly refined coke while discussing the latest attack plans for reopening the war between the states. A sneak attack on Fort Sumter is a favorite scenario. This time the south will win because we have many more SUVs and pickup trucks as you wishy washy wimpy yankees with your Saabs, Volvos, and Birkenstock sandals.
28th August 1998
Subject: SUVs in Palm Beach
Sorry to disappoint you Walt & Roger but the only SUVs allowed on this island are 4.6 Range Rovers. Furthermore you will be stopped at the bridge and checked to make sure you have the proper attire including Ferragamo loafers, Cartier watches, Giogio Armani underwear, and bright kelly green slacks with little gold dolphins embroidered on them.
Actually no one from either Utah or Maine is allowed on the island regardless of the above. Also Roger, pertaining to your latest aberration regarding Ram Chargers, you are obviously suffering from frost bite of the prefrontal lobes, or possibly brain damage caused by being stomped on by a rabid moose, and after conferring with a majority of the other list members privately I'm sorry to inform you that we have decided that the only solution is to have you put to sleep. I've already contacted a veterinarian who will do it cheaply seeing as Dr Kevorkian is presently indisposed. Please tie up any loose ends in your business and make out a will if you haven't already done so.
28th August 1999
Subject: Totally exhausted
28th August 1999
Subject: Weird? Us?
Weirdness is it's own reward. A lot of *sensible* drivers out there think that all 928 freaks are weird anyway, so we might just as well make them happy thinking how profound their punditry is. Further, it helps to keep many of the most boring ones away. Now if we can just find a way to keep them the hell out of the left hand lane at 40 mph with their left turn signals on we'll be getting somewhere.
2nd September 1999
Subject: Mammoth SUV get together at my place.All
I hope all you guys have a helluva good time bringing your SUVs and pickup trucks here. I'm leaving in a few hours for Hyannisport, The Vineyard, Boston, NYC, and Connecticut. I'll leave the door unlocked. I think Walt Konecny's Expedition and David Robert's M1-A1 tank will make excellent andirons in the main fireplace to roast hamburgers, and assorted road kill on. There'll be plenty of fuel, mostly old timing belts, inside rear quarter panels, and torn upholstery. The beer and booze is in the pool house in vending machines that take Spanish Doubloons and Pieces of Eight. If you swim at night watch out for the stray gators and moccasins that sneak into the pool looking for prey.
Have fun. I'll be back in about ten or twelve days if the good lord is willing, and I certainly hope she will be.
The Shark is in the garage hooked up to a 10,000 volt car thief cremator.
9th September 1999
Subject: 928s on Oahu
I've been out of town for a week, so just saw you query on 928s on Oahu. FWIW, I lived on Oahu for many years and my very first 928 was a new 78 model that I got there in the fall of 77. There aren't too many of them there because they are much like using hydrogen bombs to blow stumps out of the south forty. The freeway system is roughly fifty miles total and the speed limit on it is 50 mph. Most surface streets are 25 to 35 mph. As much as I love sharks I found that the most practical cars in the islands, at least for me, were 5.0 liter Mustang Convertibles. Lots of bang for the buck, the tops go up and down in seconds and they don't leak. The suspension systems are archaic but there are very few places where that will be a problem.
Maui is almost as bad. No freeway at all even though the island is larger than Oahu. The only island I would consider putting a 928 on is the big island where there are still miles of open road, and even there the same limits apply. Every cop in Hawaii has a hand held radar gun and they'll give you a ticket for going 30 mph in a 25 zone.
I also kept a TR-6 convertible there for many years, but with all the passing sun showers they have it was a pain putting the top up and down constantly seeing as it took a crew of six men and four boys to do it and even when it was up it still rained inside like most of the older British sports cars did.
87 S4 5 speed
10th September 1999
Subject: Drivin music
Oscar Peterson, Teddy Wilson, Ron Carter, Earl Klugh, Diana Kraal, Toni Braxton, Randy Crawford, Natalie Imbruglia,Gloria Estefan, George Benson. But when the blue light is way behind you and you're trying to make the next off-ramp at Mach .2 nothing can beat Wagner's "Ride of the Valkyries". Last but not least; "Stark Naked & the Car Thieves" playing "I'm glad I made you love me cause you made me make you cry".
9th September 1999
Don't know where you got your definitiion of "haole" from, but originally haole meant "foreignor" or "stranger" and eventually became the name for any caucasian.
9th September 1999
Subject: Re: Haoles III
You may know the Hawaiian language far better than I do. However, I lived there off and on for almost forty years and had two long term relationships with hapahaoles, also studied the language, much of which I've forgotten in the past few years now that I spend only a couple of months per year there. But if you look in a Hawaiian/English Dictionary you'll see:
"Haole" White person, American, Englishman, Caucasian: formerly, any stranger, foreigner; foreign, introduced of foreign origin, references in traditional literature are few, but these have been noted:
He haole nui maka 'alohilohi; a big foreigner with bright eyes (several other paragraphs alongthe same line) followed by: Aina haole, foreign land. Olelo haole, European language, especially English. Ho o haole, to act like a white person, to ape the white people, or assume airs of superiority, [often said disparagingly, especially of half whites] , Ho ohaole 'ia Americanized, Europeanized; to have become like a white person or have adopted the ways of the white man.
I do know after all those years of living there that all islanders consider all Caucasians haoles. (sometimes preceded by less complimentary forewords. We still only make up 25% of the population. So much for my soul home. I'm not a kamaaina because I wasn't born there, but feel like one because of all the years I lived there on Oahu, Maui, and Kauai.
15th September 1999
Me and Gramps didn't need to scrounge up wood for a boat. We already live on a yellow submarine that we bought from our next door neighbor Yoko Ono.
14th September 1999
What a wimpy name for such a huge storm! For those of you who have showed concern. The tooth fairy has shoved the eye of the storm a little more northward toward Dave Shaeffer's area at the Cape. The main danger up there is, I think, winds knocking the VAB building over or toppling a bird off one of the launch pads.
In the meantime surfing is incredible and if I just hadn't sold my Hobie Cat I could have sailed it to Georgia in about two hours and set a new world's record. The surf, which is only a couple of hundred feet from here is just plain ugly looking. We lost our cable for a few hours and power for about the same. Both are back on and the wind outside is a zephyr-like 45 or 50 mph. Supposedly not higher than 60 - 70 mph before the night is over.
Still strong enough to blow shuffleboard pucks around and knock over bottles of Geritol. All else is well. However, it's beginning to look like the shore of South Carolina is in for some heavy duty stuff. Hope for their sake the northern swing continues around a little to the east. Charleston got hammered badly enough by "Hugo" nine or ten years ago to last any place a lifetime. The Shark is safely ensconced in the garage away from falling branches and roof tiles. The bars are all closed so I'll have to mix my own martinis. The hardship of it all is mind boggling!
18th September 1999
John & Erin,
Sounds like you were too cautious. When the wind picked up down here, I went out and had a couple of belts. Everything worked out fine. Glad to hear that DR has come to the rescue. How fast were you going when the belt disintegrated?
From the description of the assorted hardware you must have been experiencing Mach buffeting.
28th September 1999
Subject: Where are Walt and Geno?
Since you went in the hospital Walt, who thinks Pat Buchanan is a Communist, has been busy converting his DC-3 into a Viet Nam War type "Spooky" gun ship with side mounted mini Gatling guns to strafe the Democratic convention with.
I have been spending a lot of time in church praying for his deliverance. After all, there is a little bit of good in everyone no matter how deeply it's buried; even Konecny who, rumor has it, is a direct descendant of Attila the Hun.
2nd October 1999
Subject: Paul Esposito's remarks re: FDR drive
You wrote: "I doubt if you could hit 90 on FDR drive". Having lived in Manhattan for 20 years, let me assure you that you can do well over that. Depending of course on the time of day and the day of the week. I had some biker buddies when I lived there and we used to race laps of the city starting on FDR drive at 65th St. south through the Battery Tunnel and up the West Side Drive to 79th St. then through the 79th St. traverse of the park, and back to my place on the corner of 62nd & third. We'd hit speeds considerably faster than 90.
Insanity, I know, but we were all ex racers and none of us were ever hurt. Never got a ticket in all those years. The average NYPD black & white would have trouble catching a Nash Metropolitan. Even if they wanted to, in most cases they didn't.
In one of my lapses from Porsche, I bought a new 81 Turbo Z car from Georgetown Nissan in CT, The outfit that sponsored Paul Newman's racing career. My new bride was having trouble shifting the 911 and wanted an automatic. We'd only had it for a week or two when one Sunday night we were going south on FDR drive at an extremely high rate of speed down in the vicinity of the Brooklyn Bridge. We went around a bend and there in front of us was a black & white. blue lights flashing, chasing a guy about two or three hundred yards ahead of him. We didn't have time to slow down, so we shot by him first, and then passed the guy he was chasing. We then entered the tunnel and went through it as fast as anyone ever had. Upon leaving the tunnel I made a screaming U Turn and headed back into it again. Just as we entered, the other speeder came out with the cop right on his tail. I blew the horn and waved as we passed each other at a combined speed of about 160MPH.
All this time my wife sat silently. I thought she was the coolest! She was actually in shock! we got off the Drive down around Peter Stuyvesant Town, and motored sedately home up Third Ave. Mind you, this was a Sunday evening around eleven p.m. and no one lived in the Wall St. district then, so the streets in Lower Manhattan were as empty as they ever got. YSMV.