So I was 17, been working and saving for a few years and decided it was time to get my own car. I didn't have anything in particular in mind, just something a little sportier than the '72 VW Beetle I had been given, repaired and been driving for over a year. After looking at the classified ads for a couple weeks, I ran across something that caught my eye and was in my price range. My dad, a friend and I went to look at it and the guy had it sitting in the drive all cleaned up. That is when I knew I had to have it. It was a red, convertible, had 2 subtle but functional hood scoops and though not perfect, I was determined to make it mine. After looking it over, checking all the important items and hearing the V8 rumble to life, my dad said it was my money and up to me if I wanted it. Well of course I did! What 17 year old boy wouldn't want a red convertible!?
Then the negotiations started, he dropped a $1000 off the price from the start and I offered a $1000 under that. After looking it over again for what seemed an eternity, my buddy said just split the difference and take it. I guess I was too caught up in the thrill to think of that myself. The deal was done!
I spent the summer of '81 top down, stereo cranked and cruisin' the streets. When we went out, we always took my car; sneaking in the drive-in through the exit, to the campgrounds, to the park and to the store. Everywhere. Went through a set of tires pretty quickly doing burnouts, collected plenty of tickets for speeding and running red lights. Enough to have to make an appearance in court and having to get high risk insurance. The cops couldn't keep their eyes off it. Yeah, that was a summer of learning too, the value of money and how quickly it disappears with the care and feeding of a 455CI muscle car. But still it was mine, even if it was draining the bank account. Had it for senior year of high school, went to prom in that car and got caught cutting school by my mother because that car stood out. The look on my friends faces was priceless when mom bumped us in the rear end with the station wagon!
Raced a few cars here and there, two that stand out are the 'Vette I beat and the T-bucket that beat me. Dad said it passed everything but the gas station. Did you know that convertible tops get pretty noisy at 130? Good times!
Unfortunately they don't last forever. The rebuild required by the knock in the engine didn't go so well, the frame was cracked, the front end was damaged from an accident and it spent time sitting in my parents garage after I ran out of money. Ended up being sold to a neighbors son who flipped cars.
Wish I knew then what I know now and I would have taken up dad on his offer to loan me the money repair it.
Still, all the money and troubles were worth the memories I have of a couple years in my 1970 Buick GS convertible.