Thanksgiving! Yes, it is a truly American holiday, but one that is universally enjoyed by all who pause to express gratitude for life and the many opportunities it provides. It is a time to gather with family and friends, to share memories and enjoy a grand meal, whether it be turkey with trimmings, or simpler fare. The true joy, however is sharing our memories, rejoicing in the present and looking to the future with anticipation.
But Gearheads are Different
What is unique about being a gearhead at Thanksgiving? Don’t we all enjoy being together and share a delightful meal and conversation. Yes; but gearheads have unique perspectives. Let’s consider our “gearhead” blessings.
The Best is Now!
There was a time in the mid 1970’s that I felt the golden age of autos had past. Corvettes, Mustangs and Challengers were muzzled. The age of 400 horsepower big blocks succumbed to legitimate desires to improve air quality. Who could expect an engine to thrive when being fed its own exhaust?
That has changed – dramatically changed! Six hundred horsepower is not uncommon, whether it be a Chevrolet, Cadillac or Ferrari. Seven hundred or more horses in a Dodge that also serves as a family car – unheard of just a decade ago. How about a Ford Focus that can outrun a classic GTO in a straight line or road course, and even bypass the gas station to which the GTO was tethered.
Yes, this is a golden age for gearheads. There is a plethora of true performance cars like the Fiesta ST or Mustang GT that can be pursued without a home size mortgage. What if luxury is more your style? Chrysler 300’s with a 363 horse hemi are readily available and yield over 25 mpg. Sports car more to your liking? Miatas, Boxsters or classic MGs are readily available. There has never been a wider range of motorcycles, off-road trucks or hybrids awaiting a new adventure.
In addition, we have regained the gearhead’s dream – being able to modify our vehicles to perform better – far better – than the factory version. From performance tuned computers, to Z rated tires, today’s gearhead has more options than ever. We can pursue the fundamentals , like adding a free flowing air-filter or exhaust to our Ford Focus or rebuild an E-type’s three SU carburetors. The internet has made both the information and technology available to us.
The Growing Community
Likewise, there has never been a better time to be a part of the gearhead community. There have always been Car clubs but they were limited to monthly meeting and the interests of those in our locality. It wasn’t hard to find a Chevy or Ford Club or local drag races, whether sanctioned or not. But what if our interest was more esoteric – like fuel injected Corvettes or vintage car road racing? If you didn’t live in a big city, you had limited options to pursue that passion. Likewise, in the old days, car magazines were a major source of information about new cars and technology. The monthly issues and content selected by the magazine’s editor, limited your potential interests.
Not so today! There are many diverse local outlets for our passion. The internet has made it easy to find others with the same passion but with different insights and experiences. On any given weekend there are a dozen or more car shows, races or swap meets within easy driving distance. We can converse with others or purchase a race car any time of the day or night. We can perform a virtual inspection, agree on the purchase price, make the payment and arrange shipping while watching the afternoon football game.
From business transactions to sharing insights and successes, our opportunities are unlimited.
It is truly the best time to be a gearhead!
For that we are thankful.
Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, in everything give thanks;
for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.
1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 – NKJV