Dec 082013
 

Mike Firebird

My dad and I found ourselves living in a duplex together for the second time in nine years and I was now 16 years old. I had been very successful in school and basketball and despite being a loaner I had a boat load of friends. A huge life change was about to occur with me.

Yep, that’s me going retro 80’s. Bad ass car, huh? It was a fully restored vintage 1968 Pontiac Firebird with all of my tweaks to it. But, under that hood was nothing stock. We’ll come back to that another day so consider this a teaser post on that car. Here’s the story that brought me to that picture you see above. This post is far longer than I ever prefer for a straight read but I didn’t want to cheat the story by cutting it short.

I had just gained full-time employment at McDonald’s working for minimum wage and at 40 hours/week that was a net of $223 in my pocket every two weeks. Yes, I  still have that number memorized to this day.  Because of my excellent grades I could do this on a work program the  high school had to give you credits if you could cover all of your other classes. I hated school work because it bored the shit out of me and it was too easy. Yes, I said that. I wanted to write stories, go exploring around the world and be left alone. Most of all I wanted a Golden Retriever but would not be able to get one for another 23 years.

My Dad was a highly decorated teacher in the State of California for the high school classes he taught for 30 years. He led a groundbreaking class in co-ed Home Economics where girls and boys learned to work together. How to sew, how to cook, how to balance a checkbook. He was amazing. Yet, he was not blessed with knowing how to talk with his son. Gawd, I miss him. And all of you who miss a parent know exactly what I mean.

I was a math tutor in high school. I have always been blessed with being able to “see” numbers. I can’t explain it, I just can. Ask any of my friends to this day and they will vouch for it. But, a few times over the years folks would “test” that. It was fun at first then I started to feel like a freak because I was always right with the answer. So, don’t ask me. I have phone numbers memorized from childhood. I know virtually every single phone number without looking in my cell phone contacts. My co-workers ask me daily for phone number extensions. Ask them. Anyhoo, it’s not some fun game for me anymore. It’s a blessing and that’s it.

There was this one kid, Mark. Long blond hair and in my book from the complete opposite side of the tracks from me. I was chosen to work with him specifically. I was only responsible for 30 minutes worth of tutoring yet I spent hours with him. Only to come find out he got it all along. He just wanted to be off on his own vision quest of racing cars like I wanted to be writing and traveling. Two completely opposite peas in a pod we would ironically become.

Mark was always working on his car and finally one late afternoon after our tutor session Mark said, “Do you want a ride home?”
I said, “Oh, yes please.”

We walked to his car which was a 1968 Camaro. The paint job sucked. Ok, it wasn’t even paint. It was just a horrible, two-cent primer. The hood was off of the car and the motor looked….well, it looked different. It reminded me of something I saw on the races on tv that my dad and his best friend watched on Sundays. The part in the middle of the engine (the Edelbrock high-rise manifold and carburetor I would soon learn) looked ridiculously stupid. Why would anyone drive something like this?

He said, “Do you like to go fast?” I snickered because I had always been a speed freak. But, only on my bicycle and when my dad let me drive 40 mph and I felt like I was going 300 mph. He let me start driving on country roads years before I was legally allowed to. Or blazing down a snow trail on one of my uncle’s snowmobiles. I have no idea where on Earth my need to go fast came from that has followed me all of my life. Maybe it’s my mind needing to go fast? I don’t know.

But, there was no way this hunk of junk could go anywhere. Regardless, I wanted to seem cool.
I tentatively answered his question, “Oh ya, I like to go fast…”
We hopped in, closed the doors and he fired up the motor. Whoa….ok, cancel the hunk of junk remark. The entire car rattled furiously then Mark gave it a little gas and it idled. Purrred like a kitten…a very mean, hissing kitten.

I sat in the passenger’s seat looking around. This car was pristine on the inside.
He said, smiling, “It’s nice, isn’t it?”
Me, “Yep.” The car was damn nice on the inside.

Mark said, “We gotta go down to a country road. Do you have a few minutes?”
I tried to look cool, hanging my elbow out the window, “Ya, I got time.”
My dad would absolutely freak out that I was doing this…oh, and he knew every cop in town it seemed like. I had run in’s with them on a few occasions. Ahem, another post for another day. We pulled out off onto a long paved country road lined by vineyards on each side. There are probably thousands of straight vineyard roads just like this in the Central Valley in California.

Mark said, “You need to put your seat belt on.” Gawd, I looked at him. Long blond hair and he lit up a Marlboro. So frickin’ cool. Picture Steve McQueen with longer locks. Remember we only had waist seat belts. Full harness seat belts were a ways off.

I fastened my seat belt. His car didn’t sound like my Dad’s 1968 manual speed Ford pickup truck. Not even close and very ironic on the commonality of the year. There was a growl in the motor. Mark looked over at me and that I had halfheartedly fastened the seat belt.
He said, “You need to tighten that down.” I was thinking what is his deal?

Then Mark reached down into the dash container and opened a prescription bottle. Four yellow cylindrical objects tumbled out and onto his palm.
He said, “Here…””
I absolutely freaked out, “No!! I will not do those kind of drugs!!!”
Mark and I did a double take at each other.

Mark bowing his head down, and sighing calmly, “They are ear plugs you idiot. You need to wear them.”
Ya, I knew that!!! I was just testing him…*ahem*

He tossed his smoke out the window and said in hoarse voice, “You’re gonna like this. It’s a rush.” He was always so frickin’ calm. He looked in the rear view mirror for cops and at the same time he said, “Pop that cassette tape into the player.”
I gently pushed the cassette tape with my forefinger and it popped into his Blaupunkt stereo system (very expensive).

He began to rev the motor….it roared to life. I had never felt such fear. And excitement!!
Mark shouted, the first friend in my life to ever call me this by name, “Mikey, turn up the volume….LOUD….!!”
He continued shouting over our earplugs, “Things are about to get crazy!!! Kiss your ass good-bye…!!!” This is the song that came on…

Seriously, turn on your speakers, and read on and you can live in my moment some 30 years ago…


Shoot To Thrill performed by AC/DC

Great, I was going to die! Who was going to turn in my English homework? Why didn’t I have sex with Veronica? Who was going to cover my shift at McDonald’s? You think about these things at 16 years old when you’re told that you’re about to die.

I just now have tears streaming down my cheeks. Because this was one of my biggest life changing moments from the course I had been on. It completely reversed my life and sent me sling-shotting into a different direction for a couple of years. I was on the student government just a year ago. I was striving for a college basketball scholarship to a junior college. But I had a huge upheaval at home that I was just not able to overcome directly. So, I went in this direction. Because this direction made me feel good and it didn’t hurt. And it wasn’t home.

I no sooner turned the volume control up with the music consuming my soul that Mark dropped the hammer. For those of you who don’t know what that means watch the “Days Of Thunder” with Tom Cruise. It means stomping your foot on the accelerator and mashing it to the floor. Hell hath no fury.

Folks, this will knock any roller coaster ride you’ve ever had off the list. Trust me. Only there are no tracks to keep the vessel you’re riding in going straight.

The front end of the car came up violently and I never could have dreamed of a more angry dragon that could breathe and scream fire in those first couple of milliseconds. The song blared clearly over his high-end stereo.

Yet, we weren’t pointed in the right direction with the tires screaming and laying down rubber. Smoke was everywhere off of the tires and we were aimed left more for the vineyards. Imagine being almost deaf (earplugs) yet I could hear Mark. He calmly yelled at the car, “….bitch!! …come back baby…”

My eyes darted over to Mark. His eyes were glaring, focused. Intent. His glare down the road. So in control. I returned my horror back to the view ahead completely white-knuckling it. Digging my fingers into anything that I could grip.

Then the tires got traction. For anyone who has ever flown on a commercial flight. When your plane shoots down the runway on take off and you feel yourself slide back into your seat? Well, I got shoved like wholly hell back into my seat 10 fold that. It hurt. But, it was a good hurt. The motor was whining harder and louder, saying, “it’s been awhile….thank you…now here’s what I have for you…”

Mark snapped down second gear and we went sideways like no tomorrow, this time to the right. The motor shrieking at him, “Do NOT take your foot off of me…I need this!…”
He shouted, so very calmly again at this beast he was attempting to control, “Fuck you…!!! I got you…!!!” It was like he was riding a wild horse and I was a passenger holding on for dear life.

The entire car heaved up and become a linear bullet. This time I flew back into my seat even more violently and it was the most intense adrenalin rush. EVER.
Mark cussed loudly, “Piece of shit…!!!”

Then we launched off like a rocket. The vineyards became a blur as they whizzed by. The tunnel in my view ahead became smaller as the speed increased.

Mark whipped the shifter to 3rd gear, “That’s better….” I was  terrified out of my skull.
The motor was purring with delight now, “Oh ya. Gawd, I love when you give me this….”
He slammed down 4th gear and before I knew it he let off the gas.

What?!?! Why did he stop??!! Why now?

Approximately 14 seconds had elapsed.

He let the car wind down a bit then pulled off to the side of road. His only concern was looking in the rear view mirror for cops. That beautiful California sun was setting in the sky. And he shut off the motor. He reached over and cut off the stereo.

He looked at me, “Fucking street tires!! I should have taken you for a ride with my slicks on.” (slicks are treadless tires that pros use)
I was trembling as he lit up another Marlboro. I asked him, “How fast was that?!”
Mark, “That was fucking retarded. Probably only 100 mph and 14 something seconds in the Q (quarter-mile).”

But, this car was actually another story with slicks on. I had just gone for a ride in a 12 second quarter-mile street racer. (He had raced and been professionally timed at the Sacramento Speedway that I was there to see myself a couple of months later)

I was breathless. I couldn’t think straight. The only thing that could spill out of my mouth was, “I want one.”
Mark said, “No you don’t. You stick with all of that school stuff you do, Mikey.”
I said, glaring with an intensity I didn’t even know I possessed,”No, I’m going to have a car just like this.”

In his gravelly voice he said, “Fine. But, you’re not going to have one like THIS. Ever. You go get yourself a ’68 Bird (1968 Firebird) because it’s Pontiac versus Chevrolet. I will help you build it for all of the help you’ve given me in school. I will build it as fast as I can for you if you think you have the money. You think you can beat me in a race?”
Me, innocently and naively said, “Damn straight.” I had no clue what I was saying, I just wanted one.

He pulled up to my house to drop me off.
Mark, “See you after school tomorrow for math.”
Me, “Ya, don’t do anything stupid please.”
I got out of the car and looked at him in eye, “Please?”
He looked at me, “Street racers never make promises but we never cheat either.”

I began to walk away and I heard THAT roar again. Then the most horrifying noise of tire rubber hitting asphalt. For 100 feet. He went thru all 4 gears on my street. That made points with all of the neighbors. Not. But, I had a grin from ear to ear….

That was the moment I became a street racer and a lot of things changed as the car I would buy became the focus and the life that could surround it. Studying, sports, college all went to the back burner. There would be some much darker trouble coming up ahead though I never did get caught. Sorry for the tease but that will be a story for another day.

I revisited that street several years later. The tire marks had been paved over. But not the memory.

Have you ever been in a street race or secretly desired to?

And we wanted to add a shout out to our friend, Arianwen, in Australia has been working and stressing to find work having moved down under from England. She finally got a new position is doing great so far! She writes about the most amazing adventures and her posts are an absolute thrill just to read!  Check out her blog and the amazing adventure stories at beyondblighty here!

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Mike Vogler

I have been told (many times) that I really need to write a book about my life. The past 40+ years have been an exciting ride, and these days I find myself with a great many passions. However, I feel that this website is a much more personal way with which to share my musings, stories, commentary, and (of course) my greatest love... my Golden Retriever, Phoenix.

  66 Responses to “How Street Racing Changed My Life And Was A Shoot To Thrill”

  1. Awesome story Mikey! As I told you earlier I absolutely loved it!
    Can picture the whole thing and almost felt like I was there! What a ride!
    Can’t wait for the teasers to come to life!

    And your Firebird was bad ass!!!!! Beautiful car!

    • Thank you soooo much for the awesome compliment, Tony! I totally appreciate that. I’m glad you liked the car. Gawd, I loved that silly beast 🙂

  2. As You know Mikey, I dont like fast cars!!! Yeah right Ive never not owned some sort of sports car. I have a desire for vehicles that most would not understand, I would love to drive every car out there, just like some Men would love to spend a night with every supermodel. Its an addiction that only few will understand. Im glad you do…. This is something not for a usual person. You have to respect speed first in order to truly enjoy it.

    • I watched a car building reality show (Fast N Loud) last night on Discovery. That show along with Street Outlaws always gets me so pumped up about in reflecting about yesteryear, Chad. I loved what you said about respecting speed first. That is spot on, sir 🙂

  3. Great story Mike, as always. Funny how even a fourteen second trip down memory lane can stir such recollections. Looking forward to more details on the ‘Bird, currently contemplating my own classic car purchase. Not so much the need for speed, but some odd connection to childhood memories.

    • Thank you and I totally appreciate that, Mike! I’m looking forward to writing more about the whole two years eventually. What kind of classic car are you looking to purchase? Very exciting for you! 🙂

  4. Love the picture of the car and your hair! I too love speed, that’s why I drive a Prius.
    You laugh, but what other car can you just look at the officer and say, “Thank God you came along! It went crazy! I couldn’t stop it!”

  5. What a great memory and gorgeous car in the photo.

    • It is quite a memory but it did lead to somewhat of a dark experience on some levels that I wish to share another day, Becc! It’s great to hear from you, our friend! 🙂

  6. Leave the dead squirrels in the road and tell me more stories like THIS. Great job on retelling, love the pic and the AC/DC certainly took me back to stoner parties from high school. *laugh* Wow!

    I had a Buick, Centurion Sedan, 455 under the hood – everyone beat me at the start but no one could out run me. ;-D

    • Oh wow that is such a huge compliment coming from a lady who’s writing I consider one of the very best that I read! You do inspire me to improve always, Maria. LOL re: the dead squirrels. That was quite a ride you had there and lots of top end! 🙂

  7. Gee Mike, didn’t know you we’re a rebel badass!!! Learned something new about you today. Too cool a story not to be fitted onto a short story collection. Seriously dude, put that one up & consider doing it. It’s a keeper!! By the way, Suh~weeet, car!!!

    • That’s so awesome for you to say, Inion and Mathair! I have so much to learn about short story collections or where on earth to post them. re: rebel baddass lol. Ya, there’s a lot of stories to a whole other life there for a few years 🙂

  8. Thank you for sharing Mike. That’s an amazing story. I’m not the biggest fan of fast cars (I don’t even have a driving licence yet), but I adored you for being so brave and curious!

    • I appreciate that compliment, Agness, as I had written it quite some time ago but was very tentative to post it. I had my best friend read it first (filter) and he loved it so I went for it! Maybe when you get back to Europe you’ll consider driving 🙂

  9. I’ve never even been in a fast car, but this sounds exciting. I’m very intrigued about how this set you on a new path in life. I was always a bit of a geek at school too, but none of my friends ever introduced me to racing! 🙁

    • Actually it set me on a not so good path for two years, Arianwen lol! That was many lifetimes ago and definitely life turned out very well for me. It is/was very exciting but highly, highly dangerous. But, when we are so young we seem totally immune to any problems that there was an arrogance of defiance 🙂

  10. Great story, Mike. And so timely. It has me thinking about Paul Walker’s (“Fast & Furious”) recent death. I’ve never had a desire to street race per se, but I do love road trips on the open road when you can put your car in cruise control at like 100 mph because you know that the likelihood of cops stopping you is slim to none. Curious to see what kind of trouble your street racing years got you into. 😉

    • Thank you, Dana, and you’re right on the timing of Paul Walker. I had already written the post a while back; it was just getting up the courage to publish it! I will write more eventually about the whole two years with some interesting twists and turns. I’m glad the story kept your interest as with all of the other commenters as well! 🙂

  11. What a great memory to share! I had a 2007 Mustang for four years. It was such a fun car. Alas, about the time we bought the car, the decade of relatively mild southern Idaho winters decided to come to an end. A Mustang in the snow is decidedly not fun 🙁 Maybe someday, I’ll be able to have another Muscle Car when it doesn’t need to be an everyday car. I used to like to crank Joan Jett songs when I would drive around in the ‘stang.

    • Oh wow, how fun on that Mustang, Jeri! Like you my muscle car was not snow friendly so I (now with huge regret) had to sell it. I was 18 years old and barely getting by so I could not keep it. I hope you do get another dream ride of your’s someday. And I absolutely love Joan Jett!! 🙂

  12. Oh MY! My heart was racing reading this, that’s for sure! I’ve never raced in a car but after reading this, and knowing my addiction for a thrill, I have a feeling I’d like it a little too much! No wonder it took a hold of you the way it did. Especially when you were already at a place in your life where you were looking to be inspired. looking forward to more about this…..
    oh, and thx for the new blog to look into! sounds intriguing!

    • I’m so incredibly stoked you liked the post, Beth! Yes, racing was an incredible adrenalin-junkie fix. Though I’ve simmered down considerably at this point in life the desire and yearning is always there. And speaking of adrenalin, Arianwen over at beyondblighty.com gets that fix often. Great posts there that she writes 🙂

  13. ***Great, I was going to die! Who was going to turn in my English homework? Why didn’t I have sex with Veronica? Who was going to cover my shift at McDonald’s***

    Damn, Mike.

    This was freaking Bitchin’!

    I Loved every. single. solitary. word.

    LOOOOVE! xxxxx

    • What an awesome compliment and thank you sooooo much, Kim! I held onto that post for a while now and finally bit the bullet and posted it. From the comments and my friends above in those comments it gave me courage to once again open up that door into Mike a little further 🙂

  14. I read every word and listened to the music and felt like I was there buckled in the seat. I’m not a speed freak and I find it interesting how the ride ended up changing your life. I was sad to read how long it took you to get a Golden Retriever – 23 years is a very long time.

    Hard to imagine making $446/month? Wonder what a full time McDonalds employee makes now.

    Great post and I look forward to being enlightened about more of your adventures.

    • I totally appreciate that, Leigh! Thank you! I will post more off of this eventually and yes 23 years was wayyyy too long. But wow, did I hit the gold mine in perfection of being so deeply blessed with Phoenix. He’s special beyond belief. No kidding on the income back then as I look back and remember lots of mac and cheese out of the box and a ton of Top Ramen at 10 cents/meal! 🙂

  15. I can’t get past the photo of you at 16! 🙂

  16. Wow! Great story Mike! It brought be back to my own love affair with a car. I drove a ’68 Camaro in the 80’s. I didn’t care about speed, just looks and it was a convertible. What can I say? Love the small town bits, too, because I can certainly relate! Can’t wait to hear the…(drums…) rest of the story!

    • I’m glad you liked the post, Corinne! And what a small, ironic world on you driving a 68 Camaro! I’m sooooo envious and jealous that it was a convertible though. Gawd, those were such beautiful cars. I wonder if you wish you still had it today?? 🙂

  17. Mike, here is the part that went straight into my heart:

    But I had a huge upheaval at home that I was just not able to overcome directly. So, I went in this direction. Because this direction made me feel good and it didn’t hurt. And it wasn’t home.

    I had a rough home life as a teenager, too. I escaped it as often as I could with my boyfriend Bart, who was actually a solid, responsible guy, though not on the college track as I was. We didn’t race cars, but cars (his family’s pick-up truck and station wagon) were definitely our freedom machines. Bart taught me to drive the pick-up, which had a manual transmission, and over the years that was a very valuable skill for me to have. (My family could never have taught me that since our cars over the years were always automatics.) Bart and I were each others’ first loves. I wouldn’t again have a relationship as healthy as that one for . . . oh, about 24 years.

    So, I can relate to intense memories of adolescence and cars.

    Thanks for sharing this vulnerable, exciting story with us, my friend.

    • I really appreciate the kind words and compliment, Alison! I really enjoy hearing about folks childhood/teenage experiences and what they reflect back on the most. I enjoyed hearing about learning how to drive the pick-up truck as it was a direct reminder of my dad teaching me the same! I’m so glad you found Thor and him you! 🙂

  18. AMAZING STORY!!!!! Mike, I can’t wait to read your first book! Your writing is to good, I feel like I have to hear more! Like now!…. Can’t wait! You really know how to put your reader right in the moment. I could FEEL everything! Your dream of writing has came true! Proud of you!

    • Oh my gosh this made my day that you stopped by to read this one of my dear best friends! Your constant support over the past year with my writing and positive words and encouragement have continually helped me to keep taking chances and push the envelope. I was really apprehensive to share but your comment here along with everyone else’s has really put me up on a cloud and filled me with smiles and more confidence! Thank you so very, very much, Chareese! 🙂

  19. Wow, what a great story. You certainly have a way with words. I can almost imagine myself in your seat. No, I haven’t tried street racing before. I think I would have peed in my pants if I were in your place!

    • Trust me, Aleah, I about peed and spotted myself during those 14 seconds! Thank you for the great compliment and I truly appreciate that! 🙂

  20. Well that story certainly showed a different “you” than the one I was familiar with—the thrill-seeker!

    Thanks for sharing~

    • Thank you so very much for reading the story, Irene! I so appreciate that. Yes, many layers to the onion here with me and after being clammed up on many discussions most of my life I’m now taking baby steps in stretching my wings and sharing more candidly on well, a global level! 🙂

  21. I never knew you had this streak in you! Sounds to me like the angels were pretty busy with you.

    Excellent story, Mike. 10/10

    • That’s a great compliment and means a lot to me, Hugh! I’ve been so very blessed with angels all of my life as I feel all of us are even for those who don’t believe 🙂

  22. Hi Mike

    Okay very scary and a parent’s nightmare for sure. Never liked to go fast and I think I would be white knuckling it the whole time. Even as a kid I hated gut wrenching experiences. Such as skidding in the snow on an icy road and oh yeah, roller coasters. I am sure your father would have grounded you if he had known.

    Mary

    • Despite some dysfunction on certain levels ironically my dad allowed me to grow and learn and become quite street smart at a very young age. This served me well all of my life as I became a great success on the outside and inside. I will eventually share another chapter of the car story addressing being grounded, Mary 🙂

  23. OH MY GOD….YOU had me leaning forward in my seat, reading and holding my breath….I was so scared that the car was going to lose control. YET you must have made it out to the other side to tell the story.
    GOSH you are so good at writing stories, and I loved reading every minute of this street racing thrill.
    I have never ever been in a Street Race before, and I am not sure that I could have the courage to be in one, but gee the thrill of it sounds amazing….did you end up getting your car and beating him in a race?
    Don’t leave me hanging!!!!

    • Oh wow what an absolutely awesome comment AND compliment, Lisa! I appreciate that so much! This story really hit a note in that those who’s writing and opinion of my writing (which would be the 23 people who’ve commented to this point) mean the world to me. And that I need to start writing more of my stories. I will definitely follow up on this as there are several stories related to the car. Thank you again! 🙂

  24. I have never been in a street race. At least not a real one. I have been stupid as a teenager and drove really fast while trying to beat the person I knew following me. Street racing reminds me of Paul Walker and the Fast and the Furious. RIP Paul!

    • You haven’t missed a thing, Krystle, because the risk vs reward on street racing definitely favors the odds of the former. It’s highly dangerous and flat out against the law. I absolutely agree on R.I.P. Paul Walker, our friend! 🙂

  25. This is crazy. I just signed up for a ‘ride-along’ Mike but I’m sure I won’t be able to recount my story as eloquently as you have yours. You had me hooked on to every word.

    • I’m so glad you liked it, Marcia, I definitely want to read about your ride-along! And your’e right, it was flat out stupid crazy. There will be more to come. 🙂

  26. Aha, you’ve definitely got into your blogging mojo with this one Mike! The way you tell a story is captivating – there is memoir and then there is MEMOIR. This is the latter. You had me constantly asking, “And then? And then?” and then you kept teasing us too! I was with you all the way, transported in a very fast car – yep, can’t wait for the book 😉

    • Your compliments are absolutely awesome, Johanna! I really did get into a good groove and nailed it perfectly with “mojo”. I want to keep putting more of those out on the creative stories outside of my food and Top 10 posts (which are fun for me to do). I liked “memoir” too! 🙂

  27. That was a great story Mike and I really enjoyed knowing you more by reading a more personal post about your life and your past experience. Thank you for sharing this story with us. I was really gripped by every word you wrote. I’m looking forward to read more posts like this one too.

    • I’m so jazzed you were able to get around to checking it out, Rita! I know you’ve been so busy with the wonderful visit with you mom and dad! I’m so thrilled for all of you to be having that time. Thank you for the wonderful compliments and I will continue to push the envelope with sharing my real life stories! 🙂

  28. Hi Mike,
    We just followed each other on Twitter, so I wanted to check out your website. What first caught my eye was your age — you are 10 or so years younger than me but nevertheless much closer in age to many of the young folks I encounter all the time on the web. So I felt a common bond there. Then I liked your personal tone. You share of yourself in a real nice way that makes your stories so readable and fun. That’s a hard thing to achieve and you do it so effortlessly!
    Kudos on a great website and fun read this morning about your transformation into a street car racer! Fun stuff!
    Josie

    • Hi Josie, and thank you, thank you so much for stopping by! So, that would make you 39 or so, right? Just a little tongue in cheek humor to always stay young in heart, mind and soul 🙂 You are absolutely right that a big majority of my blogger friends are younger than me. But, I always see us as equals, if that makes sense. I’ve really been working on gradually taking more chances with peeling back the layers and sharing on my blog. I so appreciate your compliments very much! 🙂

  29. Hi Mike what a great story, I didn’t know you were such a rebel 🙂 I never did street races but I sometimes have to drive from Belgium to Frankfurt for work and there are parts on the highway in Germany you can drive as fast as you want. I love going nearly 200 km/hours there but do not think my car can handle more than that (and do not think I would date to do so). I’m looking forward to your other stories.

    • Holy schnikeys that’s 125 mph, Freya! You must have a REALLY nice car to be able to wind it up that fast!! Wow. Thank you so very much for your compliments and please be safe always, our friend! 🙂

  30. This was awesome! I could totally experience through your story! Thanks for sharing! Love fast cars and the need for speed!

    • What a great compliment, Adrian! I appreciate that so much! Always love to hear from another speed freak 🙂

  31. Oh my! I have never been in a car race nor have I seen one. I’m not that into cars and speed, but I understand people who do, especially men.
    You need to tell us the other stories about the racing etc. Can’t wait to read them.

    • Oh my gosh, Phoenix and I thought you had gone walkabout and joined the Aborigines, Jo! Not that, that would be a bad thing 🙂 Great to hear from you, our dear friend! It’s a good point on men yet from the comments there are several speed demon ladies here too! I’m absolutely going to give you guys the Full Monte on the Firebird and street racing soon. Just will take a little time. Hearing from you made our day. We are so glad you are well and safe! 🙂

  32. Great car and story. My step-dad raced cars on a 1/4 mile straight track. He had a cool car, but my mom did not get it when he passed away back in 1998. His kids got it. I went to the race track in Colorado with my mom and step-dad a few times; it was different, but fun–definitely loud!

    • There was always such an intense anxiousness and excitement at the racetrack and there will be more stories to spin off of this one. That’s too bad you didn’t get the car. What kind of car was it? 🙂

  33. Loved the story. I relate to it cause I was more like your long haired friend. My first car was a 67 firebird. I was accepted and popular in school because of my bird. In 1986 I got my car,painted it 85 corvette red.Cragers headers ,glass packs and one bad 455. I sold my car in 88 couldn’t get the car out of my mind. I located it in 2013 25 years later, I’m currently restoring it. It’s time for ac/dc Judas Priest back to a better time. Thanks for your story I understand how u felt when you went for that ride. I’m fixing to re capture it. Really liked your firebird.

    • Oh thank you very much Rodney. Sorry for my delayed response but I’ve been off of the grid for a while with a personal loss. Wow, a 455 is a beast of a motor and I bet it sounds great with the pipes and glass packs. That is absolutely awesome that you searched for and found your prized first possession in a vehicle. I’ve wanted my Bird back a gazillion times over the years. At the same time it would be dangerous for me because I would go crazy with wanting to make a big time street racer for today’s competitors. Absolutely loved your comment, sir 🙂

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