New Year’s post

December 31, 2009

Happy New Year to all. Santa is back home resting up
for next year and it looks like the new year is going
to start out cold. That always makes me think about
upcoming car events so here are a couple.

The HangoverFest scheduled for tomorrow at Cordova has
been cancelled this year due to ice. This is a problem
for the track because they won’t use salt because of
the damage it does to the track. They are already busy
planning the 2011 event.

The 27th Annual Rod & Custom Auto, Motorcycle & Product
show is on for January 22, 23, and 24, 2010. Once again
it will be held at the QCCA Expo Center, 2621 4th Avenue,
Rock Island. For the first time they are having a Military
Day Friday. Just show your military ID and get in free.
Hours are 1-10 pm Friday, 10 am- 10 pm Saturday, and 10 am
to 3 pm Sunday. For more information and some pictures go
Comments are always welcome.


December 31, 2009

There are some of us who haven’t been carded in years;
get senior discounts at some restaurants; and get
called sir or ma’am by polite teenagers. We have seen
a lot of changes in our lifetime but sometimes I wonder
if some are for the good. It almost feels like our
society is digging a hole which will be used as a
grave for our morals and for common sense.

When we were growing up we had hobos, bums, and tramps.
Now we have homeless people. We had poor people when
we were growing up but now we have underemployed people.
When we were growing up we had unmarried moms, now we
have single parent households.

When we were growing up there was a stigma concerning
single unmarried girls having babies. Now it is so
commonplace a lot of people see nothing wrong with a
pregnant 16-year-old. That used to be called statutory

I miss the old 5 and Dime, like Woolworth’s. It seems
like overnight they were replaced by Dollar Stores. On
the subject of stores, it appears to me that no matter
what they call the store, it tries to sell everything.
Remember when grocery stores only sold groceries or
Drug Stores only sold medicine, perfume, and candy?
Now we have groceries in lumber yards and hardware in
grocery stores.

When we were growing up the stores closed at 5 pm and
if you needed something on a Sunday you waited until
Monday morning. Now we can buy everything from candy
to clothing 24 hours a day.

We used to have freedom of religion. I have a sinking
feeling that is evolving into freedom from religion
and I don’t care for that. This is one I hope I’m
wrong about.

Profiling seems to be the new four letter word. It
used to make sense that if all the witnesses said a
tall white guy committed the crime the police looked
for a tall white guy.

I used to wonder if common sense had died but with the
actions of this Congress and House of Representatives,
I now know beyond a shadow of a doubt it is no longer
with us.

And when did we change from “ask not what your country
can do for you, ask what you can do for your country” into
“what’s in it for me?” If what I see on TV is true the
people who think they are owed something for being born
in the greatest country in the world is growing.
Comments are always welcome.

Time waster

December 30, 2009

I think it looks sort of peaceful with the snow falling
today and thought a lighthearted post would be in order.
This will just be a bunch of unrelated jokes, comments,
or thoughts and not intended to offend anyone.

Why not start with a few more weird facts about Iowa?
Did you know Strawberry Point is the home of the world’s
largest strawberry?

Scranton is home to Iowa’s oldest water tower still in

Crystal Lake is home to a statue of the world’s largest
bullhead fish.

Imes Bridge is the oldest of Madison County’s six bridges.

Wright County has the highest percentage of grade-A topsoil
in the nation.

Iowa’s only operating antique carousel is located in the city
of Story City.

The National Balloon Museum in Indianola chronicles more than
200 years of ballooning history.

Now for some blonde jokes.
She Was So Blonde….

– At the bottom of an application where it says ‘sign here’
she wrote”Sagittarius”.
– She took a ruler to bed to see how long she slept.
– She sent a fax with a stamp on it.
– She told me to meet her at the corner of “WALK” and “DON’T
– She tried to sort M&Ms alphabetically.
– She sold her car for gas money.
– When she went to the airport and saw a sign that said,”airport
left” she turned around and went home.
– When she heard that 90% of all crimes occur around the home,
She moved.
– She thought if she spoke her mind, She’d be speechless.
– She thought that she could not use her AM radio in the evenings.

Here’s a sermon an unknown Mom won’t forget anytime soon-

This particular Sunday sermon….’Dear Lord,’ the minister began,
with arms extended toward heaven and a rapturous look on his
upturned face. ‘Without you, we are but dust…’ He would have
continued but at that moment my very obedient daughter who was
listening leaned over to me and asked quite audibly in her shrill
little four year old girl voice, ‘Mom, what is butt dust?’

And lastly, a worthless fact that will never come up during a
race car spelled backwards is race car.

Comments are always welcome.

A different post

December 29, 2009

Recently we had a pleasant experience dealing with a
local company online and thought we’d mention it today.
For our anniversary the wife got me a DVD. It is of the
Car Pileup 2009.
It was only 15 bucks plus shipping and
arrived two days after being ordered online.

After watching the 90 minute video of rat rods, traditional
rods, and old school customs, we’re hooked. A lot of
uncorked headers don’t hurt either. We have decided
that our favorite car is a ’60 Chevy wagon gasser that
has to be seen and heard to be believed.

There are a lot of neat things for sale on the website
Vintage Torque.
The other videos run 3 to 4 hours long, but if they are
anything like the one we recieved it would be worth it
to buy them. You can even get some Rat Fink stuff
for you collection.

The owner also sent along some flyers about the Vintage
Torque Fest and asked me to pass them along. After seeing
a short clip of last year’s event on the Pileup video we
are already making plans to be at the Farley Speedway on
May 1, 2010. It just looks like too much fun to pass up.

All proceeds from the event go to Helping Hannahs Heart. She is a little girl with a heart condition and the website tells an interesting story.
Comments are always welcome.

Did you ever?

December 27, 2009

I finally got a short break after sweeping and shoveling
several inches of global warming. Al Gore should count his
blessings he doesn’t live here and its the Christmas season.
I have a habit of sweeping the walks, alley, and driveway,
at around 5 am. I’m up anyway and think it’s a good way to
get the circulation going. The problem I have is when I
forget and fire up the snowblower that early. Some people
have no sense of humor. Hopefully the protesters pictured
above will leave soon.

On a day like today when we were out and about earlier gets
me wondering about things other than cars. At a time when
technology lets us watch TV and take pictures with our cell
phones; why can’t somebody invent a heated roadbed that is
affordable for cities to purchase?

At a time when the kids can watch TV in our vehicles and
we can get emails on our TVs; why is the flu still as big
a problem as it is?

At a time we can hold conferences over our home phones with
several people, listen to digital radio on TVs, and have 24
hour access to news; how can the local paper miss such a
snafu and the one that was in the Vineyard of Hope article.

And when we can brew 10 cups of coffee in 5 minutes, or
microwave a ham in 20; how come it takes so long to get our
license plates renewed? Okay, this one is car related but
I am a car guy.
Comments are always welcome.

Poem repost

December 25, 2009

The embers glowed softly, and in their dim light,
I gazed round the room and I cherished the sight.
My wife was asleep, her head on my chest,
My daughter beside me, angelic in rest.
Outside the snow fell, a blanket of white,
Transforming the yard to a winter delight.

The sparkling lights in the tree I believe,
Completed the magic that was Christmas Eve.
My eyelids were heavy, my breathing was deep,
Secure and surrounded by love I would sleep.
In perfect contentment, or so it would seem,
So I slumbered, perhaps I started to dream.

The sound wasn’t loud, and it wasn’t too near,
But I opened my eyes when it tickled my ear.
Perhaps just a cough, I didn’t quite know, Then the
sure sound of footsteps outside in the snow.
My soul gave a tremble, I struggled to hear,
And I crept to the door just to see who was near.

Standing out in the cold and the dark of the night,
A lone figure stood, his face weary and tight.
A soldier, I puzzled, some twenty years old,
Perhaps a Marine, huddled here in the cold.
Alone in the dark, he looked up and smiled,
Standing watch over me, and my wife and my child.
“What are you doing?” I asked without fear,
“Come in this moment, it’s freezing out here!
Put down your pack, brush the snow from your sleeve,
You should be at home on a cold Christmas Eve!”
For barely a moment I saw his eyes shift,
Away from the cold and the snow blown in drifts…

To the window that danced with a warm fire’s light
Then he sighed and he said, “Its really all right,
I’m out here by choice. I’m here every night.
“It’s my duty to stand at the front of the line,
That separates you from the darkest of times.

No one had to ask or beg or implore me,
I’m proud to stand here like my fathers before me.
My Gramps died at ‘ Pearl on a day in December,”
Then he sighed, “That’s a Christmas ‘Gram always remembers.”
My dad stood his watch in the jungles of ‘ Nam ‘,
And now it is my turn and so, here I am.

I’ve not seen my own son in more than a while,
But my wife sends me pictures, he’s sure got her smile.”
Then he bent and he carefully pulled from his bag,
The red, white, and blue… an American flag.
“I can live through the cold and the being alone,
Away from my family, my house and my home.

I can stand at my post through the rain and the sleet,
I can sleep in a foxhole with little to eat.
I can carry the weight of killing another,
Or lay down my life with my sister and brother..
Who stand at the front against any and all,
To ensure for all time that this flag will not fall.”

“So go back inside,” he said, “harbor no fright,
Your family is waiting and I’ll be all right.”
“But isn’t there something I can do, at the least,
“Give you money,” I asked, “or prepare you a feast?
It seems all too little for all that you’ve done,
For being away from your wife and your son.”

Then his eye welled a tear that held no regret,
“Just tell us you love us, and never forget.
To fight for our rights back at home while we’re gone,
To stand your own watch, no matter how long.
For when we come home, either standing or dead,
To know you remember we fought and we bled.
Is payment enough, and with that we will trust,
That we mattered to you as you mattered to us.”

Merry Christmas to all the men and women defending
our rights.

Merry Christmas

December 23, 2009

We want to wish everyone a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.

Goodbye Al

December 22, 2009

We found out yesterday we lost a good friend and the car hobby lost a member in good standing. Al Visconi died Sunday in his Coal Valley home, he was 75. Visitation will be Monday 12/28 from 4 to 7 pm and the funeral will be Tuesday 12/29 at 9 am at the Van Hoe Funeral Home in East Moline. After the service a lunch is planned at the East Moline American Legion.

Our heartfelt condolences to the family. At times like these I find solace in the 23rd Psalm:

The Lord is my shepherd;
I shall not want.
He maketh me to lie down in green pastures;
He leadeth me bside the still waters;
He restoreth my soul;
He leadeth me in the paths of righteousness
for His name’s sake…
Yea, though I walk through the valley of the
shadow death, I will fear no evil;
for Thou art with me;
Thy rod and Thy staff they comfort me.
Thou preparest a table before me in
the presence of mine enemies;
Thou anoitest my head with oil;
my cup runneth over…
Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me
all the days of my life;
And I will dwell in the house of the Lord

Comments are always welcome.

A different dinner

December 21, 2009

I was going to rant about how Congress is selling the farm to buy the unseen pig known as healthcare reform, but remembering the holiday I changed my mind.

For our anniversary we took our son and daughter-in-law to dinner last night. We chose a nice restaurant that is part of a national chain and arrived before dark. We were seated in the bar area which we thought a little odd since none of us drink and the four of us were seated at a table big enough for two small children.

We ordered our beverage of choice and perused the menu. I found something out while doing this and figured I’d pass it along so you don’t get surprised when your order arrives. The menu was the type that had pictures of the different sandwiches you could order on easy to clean plastic.

In one picture was sandwich straight from heaven and I swear I could almost smell it as I drooled over the picture. It showed a piece of french bread layered with lettuce, tomato, golden brown fried onions, a lot of sliced steak, and a mountain of bubbly melted cheese. I wasn’t sure I could finish such a monster but was willing to try and ordered it.

Well, when it arrived, in actuallity, the sandwich was about 3 inches long with just as many meat slices. So much for a knive and fork sandwich. Next time I’ll stick with the burgers. Since the service was very good, and it was our anniversary, I didn’t say anything and remained jolly for the remainder of the night. From now on I’m going to read the menu instead of looking at the pictures and I advise you to do the same.
Comments are always welcome.

Lotsa links

December 20, 2009

Since its Sunday, almost winter, and a bit cool out, we
thought we’d give you some ideas to occupy the time. The
following links will help keep the kids busy, keep some
adults busy, allow for some last minute shopping, let you
find out what sort of job you’re qualified for, and at the
end has a rat rod burnout video. We hope you enjoy these
as much as we did finding them.

If you have kids you can let them have some fun at
the North Pole. The
kids can write a last minute letter to Santa and more.

If you’re bored, you can turn yourself into a dancing elf. If you’re
like me and can’t dance this could be fun.

How about a Christmas jigsaw puzzle to waste some time. When you get done
its animated.

Around here it wouldn’t be Christmas without snow. Here’s
a website
all about the subject.

If you have a gearhead in the family, they might appreciate the
website. They have Hunnert Car Pile Up 2009 DVDs on sale now. Remember
Torque Fest 2010
is May 1st. If seeing rat rods/traditional rods on
a dirt track revs your mill, this is the place to go.

Holden has an animated Christmas card on their website.

Christmas at Arlington is a good site that honors our fallen veterans.
It also reminds us to keep our servicemen and women in our

If you have someone on your Christmas list that needs some
crud released, you are in luck. Wizards
has crud release in stock. Of course they have other car
care products as well.

In case you don’t have the Christmas spirit yet, but want to,
the History Channel
has some Christmas videos you could look at to at least learn
about it.

Down in the dumps because you’re unemployed. Might be able to
help you with that also. If you haven’t taken the Jung Typology Test. Not only will it
tell you what personality you are with 72 yes/no questions, but
it will also tell you what jobs your personality is best for.
I took it and found out I might make a good mechanic, security
guard, or computer tech.

And lastly, just for fun, a short
of the Dodge turbo-diesel rat rod doing dry donuts. The
smoke off this thing is something else.
Comments are always welcome.