It was the spring of 1966, I was working (co-op) in Dover DE before graduation from engineering school. I was driving a clapped-out 1960 Falcon. It was a Friday evening, and with nothing better to do (read: no real cash in my pocket) I stopped at the local GM dealership to perouse their wares. There, in the front window, sat what instantly became the the object of my 20-something dreams. A triple black 442. Not the run of the mill Cutlas but an F85 Holiday coupe. I spent a sleepless night and waited at the dealers front door the next morning for a chance to touch, sit in, perhaps even test drive this phantom. The salesman was young, maybe 2 or 3 years my senior, and he instantly understood my lust. He explained that this car had been ordered by one of their mechanics with access to info on all the special factory go-fast goodies. The mechanic had purchased another car due to a lengthy wait for this car, and the dealer was afraid they would get stuck with this car because it wasn't loaded with all the Cutlas bling. To me the bling was under the hood; 3-two's, M-22, 4:33 posi, big tubes from under the front bumper to the air cleaner, red fender wells, battery mounted in the trunk, red-line tires, bench seat, and a Hurst shifter. With some financial help from Mom/Dad I was driving the beast by the following Tuesday. King of the road, to my mind.
Summer pasted in a flash, fall and winter a blur, then graduation. I had not actually raced the car at the track but a few GTO's, Road Runners, and assorted other so-called performance cars had experienced watching my tail lights pull away from view. I must admit though, a local Nova and Fairlane threw some dust on my hood. Then Uncle Sam threw dust all over me and my beloved 442.
I put the word out that the car was for sale. The first guy to look at my black beauty bought it with a promise to give me first dibs if he was going to sell her. Four years later I was back home and in need of wheels. Admittedly, I had evolved to a different form of performance (read: 911) but checked on the status of the 442. The guy who had promised to give me first dibs had blown the engine at the drags, sold the car on and lost track of it. So while a 911 was financially beyon my means, a beautiful white '63 356 provided a new joy in my life... But that is another 'brief moment in time.'