Wednesday, July 05, 2006

It's just a Thing

I have a 1973 VW Thing. I've had it for twelve years now, and I suppose I'll always have it. Other than being a fun car that doubles as a Jeep or a convertible, it's fun to watch the Thing-unfamiliar stumble all over it with questions like "What is that thing?" to which I generally reply "Exactly" and smile at their dumbfounded stares.

It is also a rare enough car to turn heads, get grins, thumbs ups, and random requests as to whether or not we will sell it. We will not. It's too easy to work on, too cheap to get parts (granted, we did our research and built up quite a source book for parts), and too much fun to drive.

When we had to choose between the 1962 MG Midget (an even rarer car) and the Thing, well, I put my foot down and the Thing stayed. Honestly, there wasn't a lot of complaint from the peanut gallery. The kids love it, it's big enough for all of us (the Midget was a two-seater street legal go-kart with a sheet metal shell), and even though it doesn't have the perfectly synched dual Stromberg carbeurators that the Midget had, it sounds cooler. It's got that quintessential VW purr-growl-buzz that is unmistakable from a quarter-mile away. Yeah, it had to be the Thing.

Now my Thing will not win any car shows at present. It needs some rust removed, a paint job would be splendid, and I'm still waiting on the hubby to replace the VW hubcap that flew off a wheel when he was driving it home from work one day. However, that car with it's newly rebuilt engine, new carbeurator, new generator, new transmission, new distributor, cap, and wires, new tires, new brakes from the wheels down the lines to the master cylinder, new spark plugs, new oil, new belts, new engine shrouds (no wait, I just repainted those)... well, that Thing is as mechanically sound as any new car on the streets, and maybe sounder than some. Okay, so it only has 53 horse power... it makes up for it in torque, and it will do interstate speeds.

Granted, I might be obsessing about a car, which might bore more than one of my readers. I apologize. I figure... it's summer, it's sunny, and when is a better time to enjoy a car like the Thing than now? Come winter, when it's cold and drafty and sitting neglected, waiting for warmer days... well, who cares about a VW Thing then? Me. But I won't bore you with it, I promise.

In the meantime, if you feel I might be neglecting the blog a bit, well, I might be out in the Thing with the kids, soaking up the best parts of the summer. And I'm thinking of you, dear reader. I'm thinking of all the things I can blog about when I get back to the computer.


jerkface ex-boyfriend said...

You still have the Thing? Holy Farfergnugen. I still harbor a grudge for that pile of ching-wah tsao duh liao mahng go-se stranding us in Republic. Put it out of its misery already!

Margo Crawford said...

It isn't in misery. Rebuilt mechanically from the back to the front (the back being where the engine is...), it's doing just fine.

Next time leave off "jerkface"; I almost mistook you for someone else and accused you of all sorts of sordid things.

By the way, it wasn't vapor lock that stranded us that time. Wasn't the coil, either. Seems the previous owners had the wrong engine shrouds on it and had not sealed a few holes that were not supposed to be there. It was a vaccuum leak. Took me 10 years to figure that one out.

drop-dead-sexy ex-boyfriend said...

Vaccuum leak, eh? It's still a piece of go-se.