Sunday, June 15, 2008

Yellow Submarine

This is one of my best friends, and one of his four blond-haired, blue-eyed daughters, showing off his '72 Chevy 'Burban. This isn't a great shot. It was taken with my camera phone. The thing is on air bags and 22s. This was at a local auto show on Saturday and he actually won a prize.
This is an interior shot. He did all the custom upholstery himself, as well as the paint.This shot is a bit better. Anyway, what makes this all very cool was that this was the ol' wagon that I grew up with, was taken to my first day of school in, learned to drive in, and went on many vacations in, including hauling our boat to the Gulf of California back when I was a wee bairn. My brother bought the Suburban from my father in the 90s and had it painted. It was dubbed "The Banana Wagon". My brother wasn't very good at taking care of things, that and salted winter roads, made this old guy deteriorate pretty fast.

After I got done fixing up Clyde in 2000, my brother asked me for help in restoring the Banana Wagon. I helped him weld in new floor pans, rocker panels, and both rear quarter panels. It was a lot of work. We did all of this work only to have my brother not follow through and finish the job. He kept driving it around and all that work started to get ruined.

Two years ago my friend inquired about the wagon and I talked my brother into considering letting the thing go. Knowing that my friend is the type to finish things, and has completed many customs in the past, my brother sold it to him. It is now in good hands, and as you can see, living a better life on the show circuit.

Viva la raza! Viva, Banana Wagon!

Edit: I felt like I needed to add more to this post--it's very important that I do. My friend Jason and his family played a big part in supporting me through my battle with cancer. They would have me over at their home all the time and his wife and kids made my day much brighter. Being able to see the progress he was making on this wagon really lifted my spirits and gave me something to look forward to each time I'd visit. He and his older brother even did some major repairs on Clyde when I was unable to because of my feeling too weak to do so myself. I wanted you all to see the people that supported me through my tough times and let you know that it wasn't just me on my own. You have to have friends like this to get you through these things. I also want you to know that you all played a part in helping me through this as well, and the continuing saga. Thanks!


Outdoorsy Girl said...

Cool! I remember hearing tales of the banana wagon! That is cool that he won a prize for it. Looks like he did some incredible work on it.

NYD said...

There is one thing that every born and bred New Yorker hates and that is to be taken on the banana route. I for one would love to ride in a banana wagon on the longest banana route any hack driver could concieve.

Autumn Storm said...

To have such friends shows what kind of friend you are. Did you get to take a ride? :-D

Diane Mandy said...

Wow. I love restored old cars and that one is *the bomb*. In a good way of course...and your stories make it even better.

Julie Schuler said...

Car show season is something we really look forward to. I look forward to staying at home, alone, while the boys are out at the car shows.

Jules said...

Wonderful glimpse into your life... I didn't know you were so fond of bananas... ;O)

Christielli said...

You know, when you talk cars, I don't always understand it, but it's still fun to read. :)

I'm glad you have great friends who have supported you through all of this. They rock. :) (As do you.)

The Grunt said...

O-Girl~ Yeah, it is a sweet ride. My brother and I did the major body work, though.

NYD~ This is one hell of a fun cruising machine. You would not believe the amount of people who just stop and stare. The problem is that most of our admirers are dudes. You just don't see too many unique rides like this--most are what I call "belly button" rides. Everybody has one.

Autumn~ Yeah, me and my friend go cruising quite often. It's fun because we can fit his whole family in this thing and go to the drive in theater.

Diane~ It's been a bomb in more ways than one over the years. Fortunately, it has survived to become the good type.

Julie~ Smart woman.

Jules~ Oh, you drive me bananas.

Christielli~ You are a good friend to stick through my ramblings. You rock!

Anonymous said...

My dad used to collect old cars. I remember how much satisfaction he got out of fixing them up and then taking the family out after church on a Sunday drive.

You know, I think that you could find that same satisfaction "fixing" up stuff around my house... does washing my blinds and windows count as fixing stuff up? ;) No? Damn.

Have fun cruising!

Pants said...

The banana wagon looks great!

The Grunt said...

Meggypoo~ That's cool about your dad. Does he still have any of those cars? I'm good at that stuff you mentioned, but it isn't what I call a pastime;)

Pants~ Much better than the banana hammock wagon.

Karyn said...

I thought I was the only one who used the phrase "wee bairn".

The upholstery job is amazing. And so are you. ;-)