Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Cadillac Frame of Mind

One of the duties of the older kids in a family is to drive the younger ones to school or soccer or whatever is necessary so the parents do not have to. Also, they need to drive themselves to school, work, and wherever without bothering the parents. When my brother went off to college, he took the old family car that had become his (and mine) transportation. This made Dad have to start looking around for transportation for me. Dad’s idea of "decent transportation" and my idea were very different. Dad wanted something cheap and large – so that if I were in a wreck, it would protect me. I remember looking at an old forties model car up on blocks in someone’s driveway (it only needed tires and a new battery and we could have it free!). It was huge and rusted and the seat covers were mouse-eaten with stuffing coming out. Dad said, "Isn’t it cute!" I remember replying, "It is a tank!" I almost cried. Fortunately, he did not get it for me. One of his friends had reminded him that he needed a car that was reliable too.

Twenty years later, when Toby got the idea to buy an old Cadillac, I had déjà vu. I told him that I did not want an old Cadillac – they were tanks – old-lady tanks. Instead, I found an old Honda Accord (five-speed) and we bought it. I loved that little car, but Toby was still obsessed with buying an old Caddy. I think it was genetic or something. While Jesse and I were in NM at a wedding, Toby called me and said he had bought a 92 Cadillac Seville. My reaction was, "That is nice dear; I hope you enjoy it." It turned out to be a good car. The first time I drove it, I found a pair of old-lady sunglasses in the glove box (the huge wrap-around kind that fit over your regular glasses). I put them on, gave Toby a smug look that said, "see, it is an old-lady car," and drove off. Although it was a comfortable, reliable car, I never warmed to it. Come to think of it, the heater never worked very well and the leather seats were always cold.

We have had the car for about 10 years now. I drove it to a family reunion in NM where my cousin called it a "pimp-mobile." Toby has driven it to work. We have loaned it to family and friends when they needed a car (because we had more than the Okie allotment of cars in our yard). It has been a trooper. Unfortunately, it has also been a deer-magnet. The first time we hit a deer with it, we found some junk parts to replace the shattered fender. This time, it is not worth fixing. Today, we are driving it to Lawton to sell it. I don’t think I will cry like I did when he sold the Dodge truck or the Chevy truck or the Honda, or my little brown horse trailer. In fact, I doubt that I will miss it all. I think Cadillacs are a frame of mind. Just not my frame of mind!

9 comments:

Buck said...

I think Cadillacs are a frame of mind. Just not my frame of mind!

I think you're right... Cadillacs have an "old person" air about them these days, and I read somewhere that the average age of a Caddy driver is 60+. Not good demographics for GM... as Cadillac's customer base will be dead or non-driving in 20 years or so.

Still and even, I guess I fit the demographic. There are some Cadillacs I could definitely see myself in.

Inquiries said...

Old lady cars. Some Buicks go into that category. I have always thought your relationship with the caddy was funny.

inpassing said...

My dad is 80 years old and you wouldn't catch him in a "caddy". Give him his pickup truck and he's a happy camper. Of course, he likes his one-ton and his tractor just about as well. Come to think of it, he's pretty attached to his stock trailer, too.

I've never really been emotionally attached to a vehicle. By the time we are through with them, we are just happy that their four little wheels can roll them away. :)

The Friendly Neighborhood Piper said...

awww...i'm sad to see it go. I had my time in it. Goodbye old friend, thanks for the memories, and getting me to work.

Here ya go...50 years ago and Today...

Classic

Current

Becky said...

My grandparents used to drive Cadillacs. They were considered to be rich people's cars where I came from.

Speaking of the tank story, I had a friend who actually named her car Sherman. She said it's because it was as big as a Sherman tank.

Junk Diva said...

I kind of liked the 1958 and the currant cadillacs the piper posted. So were all the years in between bad ??? LOL I thought you were pretty cool in your cadillac.

Bag Blog said...

After watching the "current" commercial, I think I could see myself in that Caddy.

Junk Diva, with a name like "junk diva" I'm not sure your vote counts on the caddy.

Becky, I always thought of Cadillacs as rich people cars too.

Buck said...

Here ya go...50 years ago and Today...

Nice ads, Jay! Thanks!

Jo Castillo said...

Interesting how much sentimental value we put on cars. I had a 57 Ford with the fins and just loved it. Never had any luck with it. Flat tires and stuck in the mud, but it did look good. :)