Here is a car you never see anywhere in the US anymore, this is a 1958 Ford Fairlane 500. This was during the Big Three radical redesigns in the later half of the 1950′s following Chrysler’s “New Look”. While Chevrolet had the 1958 giant tanks and got the looks right for ‘59, Ford never really did. The ‘58 Ford lines looked odd, like a DeSoto made to look not like a DeSoto and was a pretty meh year for Ford.
What makes this car rare is how much rust these cars got, as you can see the hole right above the bumper. The ‘58 rusted horrifically, worse than the ‘58 Plymouths and make even beat up examples like this very rare.
95 or 87 + vmon They're my favorite pairing and I can see them fitting each other in every way?? Idk how to word it...but I love them so much, oh man. ❤
Ten miles into what was only supposed to be a two mile trip, and Taehyung still can’t quell the anxiety driving him. He’s in the passenger seat gnawing anxiously at his nails, cuticles, but most of all his own lips, peeling off little bits of loose skin and wiggling them between his teeth until he cuts through the tender tissue and it dissolves away.
Namjoon took away the pen he was chewing on, threw it in the backseat among the textbooks, dirty clothes, fast food wrappers, and other teenage detritus living in the backseat of his so-ancient-it’s-not-even-a-make-anymore Plymouth. It’s a piece of shit, but he bought it for two hundred dollars outright and it’s his; as long as it runs, he’ll love it. The car itself isn’t special, it’s what it does that matters. A car is freedom. A car is the symbol of embodied potential that the open road offers, possibilities spidered out far and wide, futures yet not explored.
Taehyung gets that better than anybody, so when he leans over and whispers in Namjoon’s ear during study hall, “Let’s go,” they head for the bathroom one by one and slip out the back door.
Tapping the steering wheel nervously, Namjoon finally asks, “You wanna talk about it?”
The younger boy shoots him an unreadable look. He shakes his head, cherry red hair sliding into his eyes. “Just go,” he repeats.
“Where?” Namjoon wants to know.
They head up into the mountains, blasting away from the city; from Taehyung’s arguing parents on the verge of divorce, shitty grades and classes that drive them beyond the borders of boredom into daily soul-death; from friends fighting and friends fucking; from the people they want to fuck and can’t; from parties and drugs and the pressures of success.
Taehyung pops an old Tracy Chapman cassette into the tape deck, and he starts singing along earnestly with “Fast Car,” his low, husky voice blending perfectly with the woman’s coming through his crappy speakers. The higher they climb in elevation, the more Taehyung seems to relax, leaning over the bucket seat to bump Namjoon’s shoulder companionably, grinning, inviting him to sing along too.
At sunset, Namjoon pulls off the scenic byway, and they sit on the trunk drinking warm cans of generic cola.
As usual, Taehyung has no respect for personal boundaries. His baggy culottes are hiked all the way up his legs so he can catch the sun’s last rays–maximum absorption–and his bare thigh presses against Namjoon’s. It’s innocent contact, but more than boys their age usually share, too concerned with fragile masculinity and sexualities more flexible than they appear at first glance.
They stare into the sun, brave behind their sunglasses: big bug-eyed ones for Taehyung that Namjoon is almost sure are meant for women, and mirrored aviators perched at the end of Namjoon’s nose. Under the safety of his lenses, he watches Taehyung sip and stew. He’s licking the remnants of sugar from his lips and back to chewing on them.
“You should stop,” Namjoon says, the first thing either one of them has uttered since they settled in. “You’re gonna bleed.”
Taehyung turns to look at him. He thins his lips, but Namjoon’s not sure quite what that means. So much of Taehyung’s expression is in his eyes, and without that, Namjoon has no idea what he’s thinking.
“Let’s do something else instead,” Taehyung finally croaks. There’s nerves underscoring his seemingly assertive words. Then he leans in, catching the corner of Namjoon’s mouth with his lips.
It’s nothing, really, just a soft brush, a peck, but it makes something in Namjoon go electric.
He’s not like that. They’re not like that, or at least they’ve never been, but he can’t deny thinking about it, especially lately, especially today.
Taehyung tastes like strawberry Lip Smackers and sticky cola. Namjoon finds that out when he slants his lips properly over his friend’s. They kiss until dark, until Namjoon licks blood off Taehyung’s shredded lips. He hopes this takes the edge off. He hopes this kills the distraction so they can get back to being friends.
I decided not to use the prompt as actual dialogue in this piece, but rather as an element of the plot. I hope you’re not too disappointed.
The International Scout: before the Bronco or Blazer, there was Scout!
It’s sad to see the demise of so many car brands during the past few years: Ford got rid of Mercury, Chrysler doesn’t make Plymouths anymore and GM has really reduced what with the elimination of Hummer, Oldsmobile, Pontiac, Saturn etc. Now I know what it feels like when my parents witnessed the end of Desoto, Studebaker and Nash. And I can still remember as a teen-ager saying goodbye to quirky little AMC. But I think one of the rigs I miss the most is the International Harvester trucks. “Binders”, as my Dad and others called them (a spin-off of “corn binder”, a popular field tractor) were perhaps a little more plain than some of their contemporaries but they were immensely stout and hard to kill. And out of the various models they offered, it was the Scout that stood out as my favorite. The little International Scout was introduced in 1961, which clears up a common error I frequently see in articles about the Ford Bronco. Namely, that the Bronco was the first vehicle to use the popular SUV basic design that we see today. It wasn’t. It was the other-way around and the Bronco was, in fact, designed to directly compete with the popular Scout but was not introduced until 1966. To be fair, the Scout was likewise designed to grab a share of the civilian 4x4 market that was at that time completely the domain of Jeep. However, the Scout used a far different, more-enclosed, and modern design. Scouts were a mainstay of International Harvester’s truck sales from 1961 until the demise of their passenger-vehicle division in 1980 whereby International focused solely on large trucks and buses. While some would point out the number of changes that the Scout saw during its 19-yr run, there was really only one significant change to the overall design. 1971 saw the change from the original Scout to the aptly-named “Scout II” which had several different, obvious cosmetic changes and was a bit larger and more modernized. Several different engines, transmissions and axles were available for the Scouts over the years. 4, 6 and 8 cylinder motors were all used with some earning a reputation for being extremely long-lived and efficient. For its time, the 20 mpg that some of the 4 cylinder Scouts could achieve was considered nothing short of amazing. This was due to the simple approach International used in designing the 4 cylinder which consisted of basically using one-half of their 304 and 392 V8s. This made for an overly-built motor with excellent cooling (the water jackets had been designed to cool a V8, after all.) Sadly, Scouts (like all International passenger trucks) are becoming a rarity. They were never sold in the same numbers as the Jeep, Bronco or Blazer and once production ceased they began to dwindle as many people simply stopped trying to maintain them. Availability of parts can be more difficult than most other trucks. Many have been lost to over-zealous off-road enthusiasts while others have been kept on the road albeit with a GM or other engine that has more readily-available parts. Still others simply rot away behind a garage, barn or out in a field as they have not quite achieved the desired collectability (yet) to see them worth the time and money for restoration. Among car enthusiasts, Internationals are often described as having a “cult” following but are almost always rewarded with a smile and attention whenever spotted in restored or otherwise good condition…especially the 1st generation examples. In my opinion, a Scout that is still in reasonably good condition could be a good investment. I would seriously consider taking a closer look at an unmolested, original or near-original condition Scout provided the seller wasn’t too obnoxious with the price.
Alright, this is an odd one as most of the guns I’ve covered have been mostly military and police guns, but let’s throw a curveball and talk about this…thing. This is a Hamilton Model 27 rifle. While this looks like a lot of cheap .22 caliber “boys rifles” made in the early 1900′s, the Hamilton’s interesting as it has ties to a company we know a bit more nowadays.
The story begins with Clarence Hamilton, a watchmaker and in-general inventor who moved to a little town in Michigan by the name of Plymouth. There he began making an invention of his, the vainless windmill at a two-story factory named the Plymouth Iron Windmill Company. However the fact Plymouth had no rail access and relied on wagons made transportation difficult, and the company was almost liquidated in 1888.
So Hamilton decided to make a little incentive to help move windmills. The Hamilton rifles were one of them, the other being an all metal air rifle. This began in 1886 and by 1895, they were selling so many of the .22′s and air rifles that they stopped making windmills. In 1895, the board of directors voted for a name change, and after one production manager’s comment on the air rifle, the Plymouth Iron Windmill Company became the Daisy Manufacturing Company.
Yes, this little .22 rifle is related to the most common air gun manufacturer in the world. In 1898, Hamilton sold his portion of Daisy away to make the Hamilton Firearms Company and from there began mass producing .22 rifles. Clarence and his son Coello made a method of manufacturing barrels that was absurdly cheap and used that to their advantage.
Hamilton’s guns were some of the cheapest on the market, and were of similar quality to models by Stevens and Savage, Winchester and Remington. And even better, they were commonly gotten for free as a bonus for a number of companies and products.
Everything from Cloverleaf Salve to candy bars used a Hamilton as a prize. They were cheap, they were reasonably accurate and they worked. Hamilton cranked out half a million .22 rifles before stopping production during WWII and closing up shop for good in the 1950′s.
Daisy on the other hand bought out a number of rival companies, moved production to Arkansas and became the highest selling air gun company in the world, famous for the Red Ryder and still making air guns to this day. As for the Hamilton, most guns you’ll see today aren’t in the best of shape, with many kids tending to fix their guns themselves rather than an actual gunsmith, but if you get one that works, “Boy is it a Daisy!”